Thursday, 19 June 2008

A 20knot day (No not vertical)

Nils said it would be a good day but windy. Then added but not a problem for an ASW27 or a Nimbus 2. That was almost a challenge that couldn't be ignored.

At the airfield Bob had already rigged 949, Jeremy LDV, then Roger turned up and rigged FUN and then Roy who was allowed the pleasure of Z3 as Tim was into house modifying mode.

The launch point was cluttered with a helicopter left over from Expo and the others were taxying around as though we weren't there, I'm sure they'll get back to normal eventually.

The task was decided as an into wind to Marlborough back to Thame Airfield and then into wind again to Membury and an assisted glide back to Booker with what turned out to be a 25knot tailwind. Just myself 918 and Bob 949 were going to attempt it. Jeremy had set himself a modest Membury Chieveley, which I don't know how he got on as he wasn't around when I got back.

The only problem was whether cloudbase was high enough to take a launch. Problem was solved when the 11.15 trial lesson arrived and Julian was able to inform us that cloudbase was over 3500 and climbs were 4knots. (Well we had to believe him didn't we).

After the launch I thought I was going to end up back at the launch point and go nowhere. Eventually I got high enough to start. Soon after that Bob was checking the Benson frequency as it looked highly likely a land out was in the offing, although he managed to climb away okay. Anyhow the run to Marlborough was was anything but fun as the wind was giving a glide angle more like a K13 than a Nimbus and chosing a place to land became a feature of that leg. Although looking at the clouds in the picture you'd neve believe that find a climb was difficult.

Once round Marlborough life became much easier and the day got better by the minute. The run to Thame took a couple of thermals and the into wind leg back to Membury was a real pleasure with strong lift lining up more or less along track. The day was gradually blueing out (not at all as the forecast which implied spreadout) but even so a street lead the way back to Booker and the only problem was not being able to fly fast enough in the old bus.

It turned out to be a great day (Sorry Jim if you were put off by my remarks) which only a few of us had the pleasure to fly on.

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