Ricardo Mantilla


Born in Bucaramanga, Colombia. Richi’s love of the outdoors and sports began at a young age. He camped and explored South America, excelled in soccer and all outdoors sport. In 1994 he had the opportunity to take his first tandem paragliding flight and he was hook right away. After that experience of free flight he knew he had found his passion and promptly enrolled in classes to become a pilot. Finding himself addicted to the sport, he flew nearly every day in his native Colombia. When he returned to the US in 1999 to live in the San Francisco Bay Area he quickly became involved with the local paragliders. He began flying the many West Coast sites and exploring all the National Parks and natural wonders that California and neighboring states have to offer. He took his flight training a step further when he became a USHPA certified T3 tandem instructor pilot so that he could share the experience of flight with others. His adventurous spirit and love of nature and the outdoors led him the decision to start a business based on his dreams and to share that dream with everybody. His tandem company in USA had another dream and Richi Started his Paragliding Tour Company in 2001 taking pilots to visit their flight sites all over the west offering Guiding, camping, transportation and food. He was very succeed and pilots ask him to take the Instructor course and he did it in 2004 when he did get the Instructor License, then he went back to his native country because a family lost and he decide to stay there in his home town where he knew the potential for doing the same but there in Bucaramanga, Colombia. In one month, he was bringing the first group of pilots and then his business start growing great. Then he started with a paragliding hostel, then with a back-packer's hostel and offering courses to all the travelers around Colombia. The school got so popular with the foreigners and now have more than 850 students from all over the world teaching his classes in English. In between 2012 and 2013, Richi did South America in motorcycle for ONE year flying and promoting his company and school. In 2014 he decides to travel to the great continent of Europe and of course make his dream of going to the Coupe Icare and meet Bruce Goldsmith his first wing designer, that it was a Reggae Airwave. He met with Bruce and Arna and told them about his company Colombia Paragliding. Right away he introduces him to Christoph and Richi was the Colombian dealer, flying a Base right away. Bought 2 wasp and as today the whole school have BGD wings with a very happy customers and buyers. His flying projects are to keep dealing with BGD wings, growing his school and keep travelling and flying forever. Also, his tours around Colombia are very popular right now and getting more year by year.


  • Age : 52
  • Flying since 1994
  • Current kit : BGD Punk M, Dual
  • Top sites : Chicamocha Canyon, Santander - Colombia Ruitoque, Floridablanca, Santander - Colombia Piedechinche, Valle del Cauca – Colombia Lots of places in Colombia Olüdeniz, Turkish Dolomites, Italy Alaska, USA
  • Gig : Paragliding Instructor
  • Bad weather fillers : Paragliding forever !
Website Teammates


    • Projects : School started at 2006
    • Favorite memorable flights: So many around the world and sorrounding with great people
    • Impressive place you have flown : Dolomites, Olüdeniz, and probably will be a very long list but you guys have to fly the Chicamocha Canyon in Santander, Colombia
    • Records (National and International) Instructor , tandem pilots for 16 years , champions different times in Accuracy
    • Competition results : No competitor, only in some fun Acuracy comps and wining hehe
    • Personal bests: Roldanillo, Colombia 76 Kms, and
    Ruitoque 4 hour soaring and having fun without landing, longest flights, etc