Saturday, 14 March 2009

Saturday March 14th

The day dawned with an enthusiastic group who brought the gliders out from the hangar to the launch point. This enabled the training gliders to be available and for two of the single seaters to be ready for when needed. Meanwhile in the Clubhouse, a quick cup of coffee was grabbed before taking a seat for William Parker’s presentation on Field Landings for early Cross-Country pilots (a copy of the presentation, along with several other presentations are available from the members page on our website). Presented in William’s larconic style, the talk was well received by all who attended and was suitably punctuated by supporting comments made by those who’ve made the odd field landing or two.

Post-lecture, it was over to the launch point to join in the flying fun. A series of aerobatic training sorties were flown by several members, aspiring cross-country pilots took the opportunity to practice their thermalling techniques and ab initio training and trial flights continued through the day.

There was a glimmer of hope earlier in the week that the winds would build sufficiently for the ridge to be working. The local met observations after lunch suggested WNW 12-13kts which was probably a bit marginal. So, we ignored the local reading and despatched Jim White in Z12 to go and sample the conditions first hand. He soon reported that the ridge was working well and that there was a ready supply of 3kt thermals around too.

Suitably inspired, Gary Nuttall and Stephen Williams took Booker’s K-21’s KCZ to the ridge and spent an hour mingling with the Halton gliders who were also making use of the great ridge conditions.

William’s comments at the presentation on Field Landings in the morning about having suitable fields available was particularly pertinent when beating along the ridge at 600’! A 3kt climb at the Stokenchurch end of the ridge to 3000’ ensured a particularly easy return back to the airfield where the K-21 was pressganged back into ab-initio training follwed by some more aerobatics.

Another great flying day with lots and lots of fun to be had.

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