Thursday 20th to Saturday 22nd April 2017

Posted: 22/04/2017 21:18

Thursday 20th.  Thursday turned out to be another predominately cloudy day, the light WNW'ly wind soon backing into the W and becoming light to moderate.  20 ATs were flown off runway 24 as all the club 2 seaters were flown but none of the single seaters, the only solo flight being by Martyn Johnson in his DG600, the day's soaring potential being illustrated by his flight time of 2:16, courtesy of mainly hill lift.  The increasing wind speed resulted in all the longest 2 seater flights coming towards the end of the flying day, with Tony Kendall and Bob Symons having 59 minutes in K21 KLW, Paul Whitehead and A Polkey 57 minutes in K21 JVZ and Tony, this time with Alex Davison, 54 minutes in KLW.  In all, 7 flights exceeded 30 minutes, with the Falke having a single flight and  the day's 5 First Flight pupils having a good introduction to soaring.

Friday 21st.  Another approaching but weak cold front provided another predominately cloudy day, but this time with pre-frontal wave and a light to moderate W'ly wind that slowly veered to become WNW'ly by the end of the day.   Transient wave slots were a feature of the day, resulting in many a broken off climb in 6-8 kts lift with the result that the day's  maximum altitude was around 5,600' asl.  This was achieved by George Rowden in his LS8, one of 4 private owner flights,  Fred Brown and George Feeley in K21 JVZ off the last flight of the day, Duncan Pask in  his LS10, with Duncan venturing as far as Dishforth, and by John Carter and Gerry Murphy in JVZ.  In all 6 flights exceeded an hour and a further seven 30 minutes, with George Rowden's 3:03 being the longest.  Colin Troise had 2:09 in his DG600, while his syndicate partner, Nigel Burke, had 1:28 and Duncan Pask 1:18.  Tony Kendall and Bob Symons had 1:06 in JVZ with John Carter and Gerry Murphy's wave flight occupying them for 1:05.  Among all this activity, 4 First Flight pupils were flown, as was a single sortie in the Falke.

Saturday 22nd.  Friday's weak cold front eventually crossed the site around 1900 hrs, but its influence was still observable on Saturday morning with extensive cloud and a low base at around 1300' QFE, plus a cool and light wind from the N.  The latter slowly increased to become light to moderate over the day, while the cloud broke up and its base went up to around 4,500' asl, providing a very soarable afternoon.  With 7 Scouts from Morley, 4 First Flight pupils and members to fly, the 2 seaters were busy all day, while 8 private owners rigged and launched, contributing to the 13 flights to exceed an hour, with a further 5 in excess of 30 minutes.  In all, 34 ATs were flown off runway 02, with Jon May and Steve Ball taking their Duo Discus for a 3:02 flight around Masham, Leyburn, Stamford Bridge and Rufforth although a sustained period of sink near Leyburn meant recourse to their engine in order to continue the flight.   John Ellis, after a good climb to cloud base over the site, set off towards Pocklington in his DG800, but in spite of investigating a number of clouds enroute, found no lift and had to recourse to his engine, getting back to Sutton after 2:07.  Other pilots to exceed 2 hours included George Goodenough with 2:33 in his Cirrus and Fred Brown with 2:04 in his Ventus. A number of pilots reported finding weak lift under the clouds but much better lift outside the clouds, with Naomi Kennard climbing above cloud base on the sunny side of the cloud to record the best height of the day, 5,100' asl, in her flight of 1:32 in Astir DPO.  Other pilots to exceed an hour included Gerry Murphy with 1:58 solo in K21 JVZ and Chris Booker, who had 2 flights in Astir DPO, one of 1:20 and the other, from the penultimate flight of the day, of 1:00.  Paul Whitehead and Toshi Marwahe almost made it to the > 1 hour list with 55 minutes in the DG500 and George Claydon, on his 3rd solo flight in K21 JVZ, had 48 minutes.

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