Friday, 21 March 2008
Good Friday....Good ridge day!
With the wind as predicted, exactly NW'ly at 20kts several Bookerites decided to go and explore the ridge today. Alan Johntone set off under his own steam in his AS-26E 'AJ'. This was useful because he was able to confirm the the ridge was working before the first K-21 came off tow.
We ended up with both K-21's, a Ventus, DG303 and a couple of ASW27's taking launches to go ridge running.
The single seaters also went off cross-country after a short while as, despite the 35kt winds, it was consistently thermic and streeting nicely in places too.
Some of the climbs were incredibly strong with several "off the clock" climbs being observed.
The cumulus grew and decayed with some regularity which added to the fun as you had plenty of time to practice choosing a cloud to head for and then, if it didn't work, scuttle back to the ridge. Spot the Ventus in the second pic!
Some of the thermals were so good that it was tempting to stick with them and practice thermalling (as did at least one who went straight up to 4,000'). Lower down on the ridge was much more fun though....super fun running along at 800' and 90kts+, pulling up and gaining 3-400' while turning to beat back along the ridge. This is what it's all about! For anybody who can access MP4/QuickTime/RealPlayer, etc. here's a short video (15Mb) of John Herman showing his thermalling skills....