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Sacha Dench will fly from Russia to the UK by paramotor

A 7,000km flight by paramotor to discover more about swans' migratory route

This September the Wildfowl and Wetland Trust (WWT) is hoping to bring awareness of the migratory flight that swans make from Russia to the UK – by flying along the same flyway by paramotor. 

flying1The numbers of swans making the migration has fallen dramatically over the past 20 years (from 29,000 down to 18,000 between 1995 and 2010) and the WWT wants to find out why and then carry out some life-saving conservation action along the route in due course.

By flying the swans’ migratory route, the WWT can see first-hand why some of them are unable to survive the journey.

The 7000km-long paramotor flight will be record-breaking and the woman who’s brave enough to make the flight is actually WWT’s Head of Media, Sacha Dench.

Sacha has four years paramotoring experience and eight years paragliding expertise so she is very at home in the skies. Turns out she’s also a British national free-diving champion – able to hold her breath for an astonishing 6 minutes and 22 seconds.

FOTS_home_expeditionThe expedition is called Flight of the Swans and it will begin at the Bewick’s Swans’ summer breeding grounds in high arctic Russia.

Taking to the skies in September, Sacha and the expedition team will set out on an adventure lasting as long as ten weeks.

Once they’ve safely navigated the Russian tundra, Sacha and the team will continue to track the swans’ progress through Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany, Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium and France.

If Sacha then completes a flight from the French coast to England, she’ll become the first woman to successfully cross the English Channel by paramotor.

On the home straight, and following the Thames, Sacha will then fly through central London before finishing the mammoth journey at WWT Slimbridge.

Find out more at www.flightoftheswans.org

About the author: Dan Tye

Dan came up with the idea for Adventure 52 after meeting so many like-minded people who love all kinds of adventure activities. He started out as pilot in the RAF, has worked as a ski instructor and has spent the past 12 years as an editor and journalist for motorcycling, aviation and adventure magazines.

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