Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Classic Gliding Day

For me, Tuesday was one of those fantastic classic gliding days that reminded me what it is all about. All those that worked please look away now.

Woke to clear blue skies and condensation on the house windows with car already packed with gliding kit. Managed to get the day off work at short notice and then to the airfield in time to launch before midday with a nice simple 300k declared, just two turnpoints in the logger AND HUS, Mr Turner's favorite.

Straight off tow in start area with 4 kt climb and on task after a few turns. Followed J1M past Henley pulling in the first four climbs then reminded myself that I was in an LS4 and easily scared, so took a climb and then went in the correct direction for my task!

Slight bewilderment en route to Bicester when I noticed that my shadow on the ground looked like that of a C130, then the realisation that there was a c130 about 500 feet underneath me on the same track on downwind leg for Weston, even more bemused to see it turn base then finals and pass underneath me again - closer - as I continued to BIC.

Memorable run of strong climbs at Bicester, Stowe and Northampton. The joy of rolling into a thermal with 6 knots on the vario and rising, only for the raised wing to be hit by an event stronger gust, oooh this'll be fun, real thermals.

Felt great after landing until Ed Garner landed 10 minutes later having done the same task an hour faster (also in an LS4).
Then off with Ed for a simple retrieve of Nick Newton's beautiful (well some of us think it is) Hutter vintage gliderette (empty wt 230 lbs, Va 55 Kts, Vne 70Kts) from a stubble field at Tetsworth, he flew it to BIC and almost back.
De-rigging a wooden glider in a stubble field at sunset and talking about epic flights. It almost felt like August.

Young, middle aged and vintage!

1 comment:

Denis Campbell said...

Fancy calling a glider middle aged!