Sunday 12th to Wednesday 15th November 2017
Posted: 16/11/2017 15:02
Sunday 12th. A moderate to fresh NW'ly wind gusting into the mid thirty kts meant it was a non-flying day in the real world, although in the virtual world a number of members made use of the simulator.
Monday 13th. A light to moderate WNW'ly that slowly backed into the SSW provided a quiet day's gliding, albeit with some soaring opportunities, as the initial light, medium level cloud cover lowered and thickened ahead of an approaching front . The soaring opportunities were best utilised by Steve Thompson in his Discus. Taking a 3K tow off runway 24, Steve slowly descended to the low end of ridge soaring heights, the lift proving to be weak. However, while delaying his landing to allow Alan Beaumont flying K21 solo to land from an even lower height, the ridge lift in the main bowl slowly improved, no doubt as the result of wave enhancement. This improvement allowed Steve to gain to 1200' QFE before the wave moved out of phase, the hill lift weakened and Steve landed after 1:33, Alan's flight time being 45 minutes. The day's 3 other launches, all in K21 JVZ, saw Tony Drury provide the day's First Flight pupils with flight times of between 22 and 27 minutes.
Tuesday 14th. Low cloud and morning rain delayed the start of flying until early afternoon, the subsequent flying, all in K21 JVZ, comprising 4 ATs behind the Eurofox off runway 20, the wind being light to moderate as it veered from SSW to WSW with the passage of the front. Neither the post frontal air mass nor the wind speed and direction provided much in the way of rising air so flight times from the 2,000' tows were in the range of 14 to 19 minutes, the latter time being achieved by Martin White as he flew JVZ solo.
Wednesday 15th. A light SE'ly flow that became ESE'ly later, led to operations off runway 20, various nearby bonfires in the Vale of York indicating the wind to be light and variable at this level. Indeed the lightness of the wind, even at hill top level, allowed some landings to be made on runway 02. The day resulted in 9 ATs, all in K21 JVZ, with the majority of them being for the day's First Flight pupils, with Reg Rowlinson and Chris Haresnape providing member flying, Reg with a solo flight in JVZ after an earlier check flight. The good visibility and smooth air provided ideal conditions for the day's First Flight pupils, most of whom where introduced to gliding by Graham Evison, aided by Tony Drury and George Rowden. One of the day's First Flight pupils, Helen Cotterel, had the added bonus of being accompanied on her flight, not only by CFI Andy Parish, but by the close formation of Derek Smith in the Falke, the combination starting from a formation take off, via the whole flight, to round-out by JVZ on runway 02, with the Falke then doing a go-around. The reason for this formation flying? To provide free lance photographer and First Flight pupil Charlotte Graham to fly with Derek and produce some stunning air to air photos of JVZ that she subsequently offered to the Daily Telegraph and the Yorkshire Post. So, if you are a subscriber to either of these newspapers look out for the photos. A lack of any lift meant that virtually all of the day's flights generated times in the range of 22-26 minutes, the 26 minutes being achieved by Tony Drury who took Helen Cotterel for a second flight, as her first had been continually accompanied by Flarm warnings of a potential collision with the closely accompanying Falke. The day's aerial activity was completed by Derek Smith's earlier solo sortie in the Falke.