Saturday 24 December 2011
Friday 23 December 2011
The text refers to wave clouds as 'rare' and only occurring near large mountains like the Himalayas, we glider pilots of course know better. Though not as impressive as in these pics, wave occurs at Booker more often than you would think, especially in the winter when there are no pesky thermals to mess it up.
Monday 19 December 2011
Twas the weekend before Christmas, when all through the clubhouse,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The gliders were packed in the hanger with care,
In hopes that summer thermals soon would be there.
The pilots were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of final glides danced in their heads.
And Sheilagh in her ‘kerchief, and Sue in her cap,
Had just settled their brains for a long winter’s nap.
When out on the launch point there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the clubhouse to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The wind so strong blowing north side of west,
Gave Jim the idea, fly to the ridge at its best.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But the Pawneee and K21 to the rear.
With a little old driver, so lively and steady,
I knew in a moment it must be St Heggy.
More rapid than eagles his launches so stout,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called “launch All Out!”
Out on the ridge with good beats west and east,
Maintaining their height, 1400 feet at least.
Come says Jim this all very good but now let us press on,
Crossing Risborough a doddle and then on to Halton.
The joint decision is made and it’s time for best glide,
Setting course to the north what a wonderful ride.
The snow on Coombe Hill so fluffy and swell,
With height running out it’s not going well.
Children looked up low over the roof tiles of Wendover,
As a hearty cry went out – I have control the flight it is over.
The landing was smooth in the Aylsebury clay,
A soft muddy landing for Mike and his sleigh.
Elves duly arrived and carried it out all covered in mud,
An epic rig by the FOGers to much cursing sweat and blood.
The ground so crisp and icy that Crockett used his head,
He bashed into the tailplane – concussion, phew not dead!
Back at the apron where rumours’ abound,
Sat flying school planes tied firm to the ground.
The Duchess looked drained, things right on the verge,
But outcomes look up following a merge.
Sunday looms glorious so FZA with Rob has to fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, cloud showers in the sky.
Return to the airfield no longer an option it’s time to land out,
Field selection was good – winter wheat and not Sprout!
"Now Cooling! now, Phelps! now, Parker and Herman!
On, Williams! On, Hilary! On Davey and Richardson!
To the trailer park! to the top of the wall!
Now retrieve away! retrieve away! Retrieve away all!"
So off to Rockwell End they flew,
With the trailer full of HNK! and trestles too.
The light getting dim, cross field they plodded
The mud thick and sticky their shoes they were clodded.
With glider derigged all hearty and hale,
It was time to head back to the old Grouse and Ale.
But on arriving back at the clubhouse all frosty and cold,
Was an old man dressed in red standingever so bold.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose!
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a guffaw,
And away they all flew down the line of 24.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘noise abatement to the right’,
"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"
Sunday 18 December 2011
What could possibly go wrong? I didn't do well....
Wednesday 14 December 2011
The list for Booker Gliding Club’s trip to the French Alps (Serres) next year will be going up on the notice board on Saturday the 17th December. The dates that are currently being planned for are the 9th – 23rd June. If you are interested please ensure you put your name on the list. This will again be an essentially two seater trip so if you are considering bringing your own glider please talk to Mike Collett, Doug Hilton and Geoff Tabbner. Due to the high-expected interest there will be a deposit of £150, which will be taken from your account. Any questions please feel free to ask.
Just in case you’re wondering why we go have a look at the following:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QPvWblvIBp4&hd=1
Also dates for your diaries the Bronze lectures which will be taking place on the following dates:
7th January- Theory of Flight
14th January- Theory of Flight part 2 & Instruments
21st January- Navigation
28th January- Meteorology
4th February- Radio, Airmanship and Bronze C Exam
10:00am in the Briefing Room
Saturday 10 December 2011
Friday 25 November 2011
Thursday 17 November 2011
Monday 14 November 2011
Aerospool are an interesting company, very friendly and very busy. In addition to refinishing gliders they are completing gliders for Schempp Hirth for which they have the agency, building parts such as tailplanes for SH, and build nearly 500 Dynamics / year (The Dynamic is a very nicely designed and built Rotax powered ultralight which can aerotow two seaters and cruise at 250KPH).
They have a nice airfield with a flying club just W of the Tatra mountains and say that the soaring in March and April is very good. We have an invite for an expedition!
The highlight of the tour was however the German motorised toilet. So good in fact that I had to bring you home a video!
Sunday 13 November 2011
The low inversion made horizontal visibility a bit murky.....
.........but looking down was just fine!
Sunday 6 November 2011
Monday 24 October 2011
Tuesday 18 October 2011
Friday 14 October 2011
The most notable feature today was the low launch heights needed to get into the wave, some pilots managing to get away with releasing at 1100 feet.
Everybody flew today and there were a number of flights over five hours. Cloud at many layers prevented any good climbs, but William Parker found an edge over Glen Tanar and then a few climbed to 8,000 ft or more.
Great pic from Rob K that shows the East-West wave bar with a line of cumulus leading off towards Aberdeen. You can also see the layer of cloud at 6,000 feet that stopped many from getting any higher.
Despite the weaker climbs and lower cloudbase, Jane 118 still made it out to Braemar, but don't let J1M know.
We ended the day with some radio controlled rocketry, which entertained locals and visitors alike.
Thursday 13 October 2011
Jim has been practising his golf swing.
Today everyone has been off walking around Loch Kinord and up Burn o'Vat.
Some of us went to the outdoor clothing shop in Ballater for lunch and spotted this old bus in the depot. The destination board pretty much described our flying tasks for this week (sorry, you have to know the local landmarks to get this one).
Tuesday 11 October 2011
Everyone from Booker flew today except for JDV.
As the pic below from Rob Kehr shows, there were times when it was difficult to avoid the clouds, and this morning the clouds kept forming between 3,000 ft and 9,000ft. It was a bit like climbing up the middle of a packet of polos.
Congratulations to Steve Williams on his first solo in the Pegase (yesterday). His briefings for other first Peg solos should now be even better.
Steve 318, John HXH, Phil 315, Rolf 318, Rob 315, Bob 208, Bob 279, Sarah 315, Jane 118, Richard 2R, Dave 315, Denis 370, William LC, Graham 315, all had good flights. Pete Wyld and Adrian Hegner spent the day towing. Glyn was exploring other interests at the Black Faced Sheep tea rooms.
Geoff flew off in his RV and we wait to find out whether he got through the band of rain that is forecast to be across Northern England for the next few days.
J1M at 11,000 feet over Aboyne Airfield.
Blair Atholl Town and Castle taken by Denis from 370
Monday 10 October 2011
Mike C took a break today by flying his own glider, HA, around the Don Valley.
There has still been a fair bit of cloud around, but there has been good wave and it has been possible to get high on both Sunday and Monday. The local hot spot of Logie Coldstone still the favoured release point.
Today we had our second badge claim, a Gold Height, Jeremy Gilbey taking FGT to 15,000 feet over Dinnet.
Your correspondent has not had time to check out all of the flights over the past couple of days. We've been flying until sunset and derigging with the help of light from car headlights. Hopefully there will be a more extensive update tomorrow; then again, we do have another good wave forecast for tomorrow ....
Saturday 8 October 2011
Loch Muich from the K6 wing cam.
Friday turned out to be another good wave day, although most didn't launch until mid afternoon. Mike and Graham set off for Loch Tay in 315, Will and Denis declaring the same task, the Ventus Turbo turned back, but the K6 made it. The K6 was also the last landing at 18:45.
As always with the Autumn flying at Aboyne there were some great sunset views through the clouds late in the day.
Sunset from 10,000 feet above Logie Coldstone
Changeover day today, we did have eighteen club members here yesterday, Geoff Tabbner making the hop from Chiltern Park in his RV6.
Dinner in Birkelunn steak, chips, peas and onions or an indian from the new restaurant in Ballater.
Those lucky enough to be staying in Birkelunn have also been treated to Rolf Kern's pastry making skills with the Kern signature dish, tarte tatin, and chocolate bread and butter pudding.
Link to the BGA height ladder for flights.
Thursday 6 October 2011
Adrian Hegner arrived yesterday, but despite this the weather is still good. Glyn has booked first flight of the day in 315 tomorrow so there must be more good wave on the way.
Wednesday 5 October 2011
Cloudbase was 4k and the gaps kept easing closed only to open up again. A few of us climbing to around 15k in the strong lift then descending below cloudbase only to repeat the fun later. Best climbs, as so often, just North of the lochs.
Some launched late in the day for some filming, the results are in the editing suite, hopefully there will be a new Aboyne video soon.
Daily heights and flights, provisional. (Flights will be on the ladder soon).
Mike & Russell, 315, 13,500ft
Ashley, 318, 15,400ft and then a second flight to 8,500ft
Mike & Arne, 315, 13,000ft
Denis 370 (evening flight to 10k)
Graham & Mike 315, 13,500ft
Mike & others, details to follow
Barry, JDV, 19,200ft, not quite a Diamond.
Bob, 279, 19,400ft (17,200 gain)
Bob, 208, 15,000ft
Robert & Mike, 315, 13,500
As I write this on Weds morning, 315 is climbing in wave for the second time today and 118 has just launched, so we're all off to do it again.
Rolf has arrived taking Booker numbers up to fifteen and the forecast is looking good for a busy few days.
Photos to follow.
Monday 3 October 2011
Sunday was wet, but it dried out enough for the first round of model flying. Will Ellis demonstrating his electrified Discus, Pete Wyld dug out his micro video camera and we taped it to the Cub. In flight video to follow.
Monday was the first flying day. A classic wave sky (see the photos). Team Booker were first to rig despite not arriving till 08:30, Ashley and Mike launching around 9 in 315.
The roll call of achievements follows.
Denis, 370, 10,000 ft, Lochnagar then Braemar.
Jane, 118, Flat tyre, barograph inop, oxygen broke, then 10,500 Ft over Cambus o May.
Mike & Robert T, 315, (TBA)
Not sure about tomorrow, the wind may be too strong, but might be OK with an early start.
Photos courtesy of Ashley Birkbeck and Robert Turner.
Saturday 1 October 2011
September really did deliver an Indian Summer and there were only 4 days in September when the club didn't fly. Over 450 launches were achieved during the month that inlcuded several cross country flights late into the month and a significant amount of soaring.
Several instructors have been frantically getting hours in before renewals expire (the message here is to do it sooner!) and the Bronze course run by Richard C was a success with Phil Binnee and John Lambe getting their Bronze badges, 1st solo for Neil Parkinson and type conversions with Ali Elliott on the K18 and Sam Gervais on the Junior. This list doesn't include the other achievements already mentioned in earlier September Blogs.
Jonathan Morris chose Booker as the best place to learn aerobatics having been awarded an Air League scholarship and went away having achieved his Basic level award under Graham Saw's excellent tuition.
The 1st October arrived hot and sunny and even though a large contingent of the club are wending their way to Aboyne, there were still 38 launches on one of hottest October days known. The sunshine brought out the T21 and all the flying was done in shirtsleves.
Jim White giving a pre-flight brief (?)
Jonathan Morris after gaining his Aerobatic badge