Sunday 10th to Monday 11th January.

Sunday 10th.  Sunday dawned with bright skies and a light to moderate ENE’ly wind that slowly veered into the E.  As the day progressed cloud spilled in from the S and the temperature ROSE ABOVE ZERO for the first time since New Years Eve, bringing the prospect of improving approach road and airfield conditions in the not too distant future.  Perhaps even flying!!!. 

Monday 11th.  Spurred on by Chairman Graham Evison call for people to attend the club today,  an unsuccessful attempt was made.  A light to moderate E’ly was bringing in continuous low cloud and light rain at low levels which was helping in a general thaw and road conditions were good up to the club access road off the A170 which was still snow covered.  Here, the rain had turned to sleet/wet snow with cloud base below hill top level.  Encouraged by evidence of more vehicle movements than on my previous visit,  I ventured down the access road, successfully negotiating an increasing number of drifts which had turned the normally flat surface into a series of undulations.  On approaching  the bend where the road goes right to the club,  the ground clearance of the car became less than the depth of the tracks I was following with obvious results.  Out came the spade to dig out the packed snow under the car when first Dick Cole and then a local turned up and, after more digging and pushing, out came the car backwards.  Our plan was to reverse down the access road and turn round where the tree felling crew had parked their vehicles, before going back to the visitor centre, parking there and getting to the club on foot.  The first part of the plan worked admirably, apart from the fact that trying to back down a snow covered road keeping in the wheel tracks in poor lighting conditions is quite difficult.  However, but by the time we had both turned around, the snow was well and truly coming down so, discretion being the better part of valour, we went off to our respective homes.  If you want to visit the club, parking near the visitor centre and walking is recommended until the snow cover on the access road has diminished.   In conversation with one of the tree felling crew he informed us that his earlier venture up the access road had revealed a Toyota Land Cruiser stuck in the same drift, but that too had obviously been recovered.   Incidently, the last of the trees should be felled this week, while the Met Office aviation forecast predicted wave, confirmed by some nice wave bars over the Pennines on the day’s Sat pics.

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