Wednesday 10th to Saturday 13th August.

Wednesday 10th.    A moderate to fresh S’ly that veered into the W deposited 6.5 mm of rain and left the site in cloud all day.  No flying was possible.

Thursday 11th.  Another day of rain, drizzle and low cloud so no flying was possible except in the evening on the Simulator when a group of 14 Scouts and 4 Scouters were given an introduction to gliding via an informal talk, a visit to see the gliders, tugs and  winch and a flight each on the simulator.  For some inexplicable reason the only scenery available was somewhere in Norway with the AT through the trees an interesting departure from normal practice.  Although 1 Scout had a Kamikaze streak, with a flight time of around 10 seconds from 3300′ QFE, most were able to descend more sedately.

Friday 12th.  Friday brought another day of low cloud and occasional light rain and drizzle in a light to moderate SE’ly.  The cloud base was above the hill, however, so flying did take place with 2 flights in the Falke.

Saturday 13th.  Morning briefing saw the site in cloud in a very  moist, light to moderate WSW’ly, but the low stratus soon cleared away and over the day  the cloud base rose to around 4000′ asl.  The initial low cloud base precluded ATing, so winching off runway 24 commenced, with initially the  hill lift being weak.  With landing on runway 20, the preferred option, the low operating heights were not a problem.  14 winch launches were flown utilising both K21s, the DG1000 and the DG303 and there was a single private owner launch, with Bob Calvert flying his Discus in search of the wave that could be seen to the West.  Bob made repeated forays forward  in his flight of 4:32 and utilised the weak thermals that were a feature of the afternoon, but no significant wave was found.  3 other pilots exceeded an hour in the air with John Shaw having 1:15 in the DG303 and the 2 seater honours shared by Martyn Johnson/R Hume and Andy Parish/R Carter who each had 47 minutes in the K21.  3 Trial Lesson pupils were flown.  By early afternoon the wind speed started to decline and the decision was taken to change to ATing with another 14 launches being  flown off runway 24 to generate 28 launches for the day.   The ATing batch of launches generated 2 flights in excess of an hour with one of them by  Phil Jones on his first flight in the DG303, with 1:31 in weak thermal.  Congratulations to Phil.  Robin Hutchinson/Fred Brown provided the other flight in excess of an hour with 1:15 in the DG1000 while Fred managed to get involved in another meritorious flight when in company with Marian Stanley they took a tow to 3000′ QFE in a K21 and managed to climb 300′ in wave before an encroaching cloud forced a rapid descent.  2 other Trial Lesson pupils enjoyed some pleasant flying on the hill while the visiting group of around 8 pilots from the Kent GC were welcomed and some had check flights.

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