I was given a 30 minute flight in an open cockpit gyrocopter as a 40th birthday present and it was fabulous from start to finish.
Highland Aviation is really easy to get to as it is within the Inverness airport estate with it's own car park.
On the ground side there is a spacious reception area,classrooms and welfare facilities all well maintained and spotlessly clean.
I was welcomed by a receptionist who was polite and professional. He answered all the questions I could think of at the time.
I was soon met by Instructor-pilot Nick,we talked about what I expected from the experience and how I felt about flying. Nick communicated very clearly and concisely about what we could do,he went on to show me around the aircraft and explain some very simple principles of how the gyrocopter works.
We donned some protective clothing and flying helmets with built in intercoms an very soon we were flying.
Climbing away from the airport facing west I had the most spectacular view of the inner Moray firth,Black Isle,Inverness,Beauly Firth and the Great Glenn with Loch Ness shimmering in the distance.
Now it was my turn to fly. Nnick guided me through the most basic manoeuvres and in minutes I felt confident in my ability to control the craft.
I had chosen to fly to Beauly(my home town) and in minutes we were there. We circled several times allowing me to get lots of excellent aerial pictures of the village.
We headed back towards the airport along the Northern shore of the Firth,again executing a few gentle manoeuvres then crossed over to approach the Airport from the East.
After the most gentle landing I've ever experienced we Taxied back to the Highland Aviation facility for some photos of a delighted novice aviator (that's me :-)) and a quick debrief.
Nick also sent me an electronic copy of our flight plan which shows exactly where we went in two and three dimensions.
Flying a gyrocopter has turned out to be one of the most exciting and fascinating things I have ever done. To anyone looking for adventure or just great views I would say DO THIS! without hesitation.