Words: René Wildhaber
Against Gravity - an interplay between the professional paraglider Patrick von Känel and the professional mountain biker René Wildhaber. The paraglider pilot used thermal winds to fly easily to the hut with his bike attached. The mountain biker used his own muscle power to make the way up to the Blüemlisalphütte 2800 m above sea level. Together they enjoyed the incredible descent by bike in the breathtaking mountain scenery of the Swiss alps. The riding pleasure was abruptly stopped by a bike riding ban. But this was no obstacle for them. Patrick unfolded the paraglider, and they flew together, including the bikes, over the bike ban into the sunset.
When I was 16 I started paragliding, climbing and biking. At the age of 21, I decided to give my main attention to biking. For more than 20 years I was regularly at the starting line of mountain bike races. I still hold the record of Megavalanche wins and got a couple of podiums in the Enduro World Series. I loved to travel the world for bike adventures and now with a family I try to find new paths back home in Switzerland. Patrick von Känel brought me back to the paraglider. The experience of soaring through the air with the latest generation of wings was wonderful and calls for more.
Patrick von Känel
Patrick von Känel is a professional paraglider pilot and works as a test pilot for the Swiss paragliding company Advance. He finished second at the Red Bull X-Alps in 2022 and gained notoriety as an athlete and adventurer beyond the scene. Patrick says: "It fulfils me to be able to live out my passion for sport in nature and to experience new magic moments again and again.