RVHPA membership required to use primary Woodrat LZ’s

Pilot Rick Ray landing in Hunter LZ at Woodrat Mountain. This privately-owned LZ is crucial to flying at Woodrat Mountain and RVHPA works hard to maintain this amazing site.

RVHPA has four different levels of membership:

* Visiting Pilot Annual Member– $30 online
* Local Pilot Annual Member– $60 online
* Instructional Tandem Pilot Annual Member – $60 online
* 7 Day Visiting/Special Event Pilot Member – $20 online
Good for seven consecutive days or duration of an event.

Please see the Join RVHPA page for detailed information on joining or renewing your RVHPA membership.  You can join online.  When you join on line your name will immediately appear on the membership web page. When you join online, you can request that we mail you a site pass and helmet sticker.


Where does the membership money go?

Membership funds  pay for maintaining windsocks in the greater Woodrat area, annual holiday gifts to every landowner whose field we use as an LZ, grading and improving the launch slope, maintaining the parking areas, maintaining the toilet on launch, installing cattle guards on the road, purchasing grass seed for the main LZ, etc.  RVHPA spends thousand of dollars a year to maintain the Woodrat launches and the related LZs in the Applegate Valley.  Any excess funds are invested towards our goal of purchasing a bailout landing zone.

How the Membership Requirement Works

Pilots must be current members of RVHPA and USHPA before using any USHPA insured landing zone’s in the area.  Joining requires completing a membership form, paying dues, reviewing the site guide, and displaying and or providing the proper membership identification. All RVHPA members must also be current USHPA members. This is very important for liability and site insurance purposes.

RVHPA membership is required to legally land in the primary LZ (aka Hunter LZ), use the parking area along Bishop Creek Road, or land in the “feed lot” field on Bishop Creek Road. Those fields and the parking area are private property. The landowners graciously allow RVHPA members to use them. Non-members who use them are trespassing. Please respect this rule and do not trespass on private property.

RVHPA insures the primary landing zones at Hunters Ranch and at LongSword Vineyard.  USHPA  and RVHPA membership is required to land at these sites unless you have prior permission from the landowners.

FAQ on the RVHPA Membership Requirement at Woodrat Mountain

How will RVHPA know if I am a member? All new and renewing annual members will have their rating and membership type show up immediately on the membership page after  completing their online application.  RVHPA club members and officers will be politely if you are a member. The flying community and the club will also sometimes check memberships in the LZ.

The launches on Woodrat Mountain are on public land. How can RVHPA require me to join before launching from land that is freely open to all people? RVHPA membership is not required to launch from Woodrat Mountain, but it is required to land in the privately owned LZs surrounding the mountain and to land in Donato’s LZ Donato, 16km (10 miles) to the east. Every pilot who launches at Woodrat is assuming that he or she will land in the Hunter LZ because it is the only LZ within a guaranteed glide of launch. We can fly at Woodrat only because we are welcomed–as RVHPA members–in the only field guaranteed to be within glide of launch. RVHPA membership is also required to use the privately owned parking area on Bishop Creek Road near the LZ.

I’m a tandem instructor from out of the area and I want to fly a commercial tandem flight at Woodrat Mountain. Can I do that?  Please see Tandem Instructor information here: http://rvhpa.org/instruction/wmic/

I’m coming for the Applegate Open this year. Do I have to join RVHPA? Yes. If you are from out of the area you may join as a Visiting Pilot, either for one year ($30) or for the event ( $20). Please see our Join RVHPA page. If you arrive at the Applegate Open and have not yet joined RVHPA, you will be able to do so at the  RVHPA table during registration.

Can I see a list of RVHPA members? Yes. The club keeps a frequently updated current member list on the RVHPA website.

Do I have to be an RVHPA member to fly at The Whaleback? No, but we’d love it if you joined RVHPA anyway as a way of supporting our ongoing work and improvement of The Whaleback flying site.

Updated February 3, 2020
Dan Wells

Ways to join RVHPA

Our Club

RVHPA is an active community of hang glider and paraglider pilots in Southern Oregon and Northern California.  We maintain several amazing flying sites including Woodrat Mountain and The Whaleback. Membership dues help maintain our flying sites into the future. Please become part our club and fly with us!

Who Can Join

RVHPA membership is open to all USHPA members and is required for all pilots flying at the Woodrat Mountain flying site and using our insured landing areas in Ruch, Oregon. Learn more about this requirement.


Sample 2011 Membership Card
A Woodrat Mountain site pass is required to fly Woodr

Two Ways to Join

1. Join Online (preferred)

You can join online . When you join online your membership information goes directly into the member database and can be verified on the members page.  Your emergency contact information is also loaded directly into a secure page that club officers can access in case of an accident.   This is the best way to join as it eliminates the treasurer having to re-copy the information from a paper application and the chance for errors.   We will mail a helmet sticker and membership badge to you on request (14 days) but they are not absolutely required since your membership can be easily verified online by smart phone if your membership status is challenged on launch or at one of the LZs .

2. Join at the Ruch Country Store ($5 surcharge)

You can now join RVHPA at the Ruch Country Store, one mile southwest of the Woodrat LZ on Hwy. 238. Sign up at RVHPA kiosk inside and pay for your membership at the store checkout with cash, credit, or debit. You’ll get your required Woodrat Mountain site pass and site guide after paying. This is a fast and easy way to join within minutes of the LZ.

Ruch Country Store Map
Join RVHPA at the Ruch Country Store, one mile southwest of the LZ on Highway 238. Get your Woodrat Mountain site pass and everything you need from RVHPA in one stop. Click map to enlarge.

Woodrat Mountain Site Pass & Site Guide

Every member who joins at the Ruch Store receives a membership packet that includes a plastic RVHPA Woodrat Mountain site pass (membership card) and a site guide booklet.   Please attach the site pass to your gear bag, harness, or other location where it can be easily seen while you are at Woodrat.   If you purchase your membership online you will need to request these items. Displaying your card and helmet sticker is one way of verifying your membership.  However it can also be verified on the members page of this website. The site guide will be very useful for all pilots and includes maps, info, and the site rules.  They are available free at the Ruch Store.

RVHPA Membership levels

RVHPA has four levels of membership. You will choose your membership level when you join at the Ruch Country Store or online.  Annual memberships are valid for 1 calendar year. However memberships purchased from Sept 1-Dec 31 are good for the following year as well.

Local pilot annual membership $60  Required for all pilots living within 50 miles of Woodrat Mountain launch. Optional for members living up to 75 miles away who would like to support RVHPA and have voting rights. Available for purchase at the Ruch Store or online.  Memberships purchased at the Ruch Store are $65 due to the extra time necessary to transcribe member data into the pilot roster and emergency notification database.

Visiting pilot annual membership $30  For pilots living more than 50 miles from launch who do not wish to purchase a local membership.  Available for purchase at the Ruch Store or online.   Memberships purchased at the Ruch Store are $5 more due to the extra time necessary to transcribe member data into the pilot roster and emergency notification database.

Commercial membership $100  Required for event organizers and tandem instructors charging a fee for tandem instructional flights. Not required if you are not charging a fee for tandems.  This membership requires WMIC approval.  It is available for purchase  online, from a WMIC member, or club officer.

Visiting pilot 7 day or event membership $20  RVHPA also offers a temporary membership valid for 7 consecutive days or during the duration of a special event (i.e. Applegate Open, clinics, etc) for non-local pilots.  Non-local pilots are pilots who live further than 50 miles from Woodrat Launch. These memberships are available online or at the Ruch Store.


NOTE – The WMIC is not accepting applications for new solo instructors at this time per landowner request.  For all tandem instruction and visiting solo instruction activity read below.


Hang gliding and Paragliding at Woodrat Mountain is a privilege.  Instruction is more so.  To protect our shared resource, local landowners and the RVHPA have RVHPA have initiated several new developments designed to protect our access to this site.  RVHPA is placing all instructional activities under the supervision of the Woodrat Mountain Instructor Committee (WMIC).  Any eligible pilot wishing to conduct instructional activities at an RVHPA-insured site must be approved by the WMIC.

Instruction  (solo or tandem)

USHPA certified Instruction at Woodrat Mountain shall be limited to instructors approved by the WMIC and Insured landowners.  All instructors must be approved by the WMIC prior to conducting any instruction at Woodrat Mountain site and LZ’s Instruction includes tandem flights, basic instruction, advanced instruction, clinics, paid tours and competitions.  All Solo instruction at Woodrat Mountain requires supervision by WMIC lead (Kevin Lee).

Commercial instructors (solo or tandem)

NOTE – The WMIC is not accepting applications for new solo instructors at this time per landowner request. 

Commercial instructors (solo or tandem) must be approved and sponsored by the WMIC, current USHPA, PASA certified, RVHPA members for one year, and have a BLM Special Recreation permit (the BLM permitting process involves completing a 2930-1 Special Recreation Permit Application, submitting an operations plan, and paying the BLM fee of $105.  See the link below for additional details).

 Non-commercial instructors (solo or tandem, local or visiting)

To be considered for any instructional activities at Woodrat, non-commercial instructors (solo or tandem) must be approved and sponsored by the WMIC prior to any solo or tandem instruction from Woodrat Mountain, and current USHPA and RVHPA members.  A commercial RVHPA membership or BLM permit is not required as long as you are not receiving compensation of any type for tandem flights, or solo instruction/training.


This currently applies only to Woodrat Mountain and associated LZs: Hunter and  Long Sword

To download WMIC and BLM documents along with a sponsorship form, click here.

Questions?  contact a WMIC member:

Kevin Lee (Chair)   (541) 890-7142     kevin@thermaltracker.com

Sam Crocker            (503) 781-1795     samwise19@hotmail.com

Karl Blust                   (541) 944-9415      kblust@hotmail.com

Ryan Grizzell            (541) 941-1496      ryangrizzell@gmail.com

USHPA Temp Membership required for Foreign Pilots

Foreign pilots (including Canadians) must hold a current USHPA membership in addition to a membership in RVHPA to fly from Woodrat Mountain.

Having the USHPA membership is important because it provides you with liability insurance for any damage you might do to someone’s property.  It is also important because our landowners are not insured against claim by injured parties if the pilot is not a USHPA member.

If you are not a USHPA member you may purchase a 30 day membership from one of the local instructors.  It’s easy…

Just present your IPPI card issued by your country’s free flight governing body to one of the local instructors, complete the 30 day application with the instructor, and sign the waiver on the back side.  The instructor will give you the temporary membership portion of the form and mail the completed form to USHPA.

Typical fee for purchasing this membership  from USHPA through the instructor is  $10 USD.

Local instructors who can issue your 30 day membership are listed below:

Kevin Lee | Thermal Tracker Paragliding

USHPA Advanced & Tandem Instructor
+1 541.890.7142

 Sam Crocker | Sundog Paragliding

USHPA Advanced & Tandem Instructor
+1 503.781.1795