Tuesday 16th to Thursday 18th July 2019
Posted: 19/07/2019 10:22
Tuesday 16th. A light to moderate WSW'ly blew all day with ATs off runway 24, medium level cloud at times not seeming to detract too much from lower Cumulus development, allowing some local cross countries to be flown from the day's 50 launches. The 2 seaters were busy as another group from Barnsley College, sponsored by the Air League, visited Sutton to experience gliding. while the Tuesday evening group continued the day's flying into the late evening, the last flight landing at 21:35. Just under 50% of the day's launches resulted in flights of over 30 minutes, with 13 exceeding an hour. Visitor P Mather in his LS8-18 had 3:55 as he visited Market Weighton and Rufforth, while YGC's Martyn Johnson had 3:41 in his DG600, visiting Northallerton, Osmotherly and the northeastern hinter land of the North Yorkshire Moors. Visitor S Bort had 2:25 and also recorded the highest altitude, 5,700' asl, as he visited Kirbymoorside and went via Osmotherly to have a look at Captain Cook's monument on the N edge of the Moors. Bruce Grain and John Dore made sure 2 seater pilots were mentioned in the Blog by having just over an hour in K21 KLW, while Albert Newbery and Stuart Heaton took their DG1000 to Knaresborough and Northallerton in their flight of 2:16. Club Astir pilots Andrew Bedford, George Claydon and Andy Tyas all enjoyed over an hour each as the Falke was well used with 4 sorties.
Wednesday 17th. Some early brightness with Cumulus development, led to an O/R task to Beverley being suggested, with a call in at Castle Howard enroute. In the event, soaring conditions deteriorated as a front made progress eastwards with lowering and more extensive cloud formation and rain arriving early evening, just after the gliders had been put away for the night. The suggested cross country task of 131 km was completed by Rob Bailey in his ASG29 who experienced some large, thermal free gaps and the increasing cloud during a flight time of 2:40. Martyn Johnson, flying his DG600 had 2:36 and visitor I Russel had 1:50 although both stayed relatively local to site. Alan Beaumont, flying K21 solo, joined the group of 6 pilots to exceed an hour with1:02, while Ian McFarlane took one of the day's First Flight pupils for 50 minutes in the DG500. The day's total of 24 launches included 10 for a visiting group from a local WI.
Thursday 18th. An initially light WSW'ly with early Cumulus development led to ATing off runway 24 and this continued throughout the day, although with the wind strength increasing to moderate, winching also became a more popular option. In all 26 launches were flown, 16 via the winch and 10 via AT. All the winch launches resulted in flights of over 30 minutes, with 7 exceeding an hour, while ATing yielded 15 flights of over 30 minutes and 8 in excess of an hour. The early thermal conditions encouraged some of the 9 private owners to launch to embark on cross country flights, but over development meant most abandoned their attempts and remained local. Steve Thompson in his Discus set off for Burn and, arriving at Pocklington, continued on to Burn as the weather back to Sutton looked dire compared to that down track to Burn. However, a hoped for cycling of the cloud cover back to soaring conditions for the return to Sutton did not happen, so a landing was made at Breighton after a flight of 2 hrs. The extensive cloud cover during the late morning/early afternoon, did slowly disperse to give a much sunnier end to the flying day and also revealed some wave activity which Mike Greenacre had indicated was present in the morning by climbing to around 4,000' asl in Astir HVK in his flight of 1:20. Jesper Mjels in his DG400 made the best use of the afternoon wave in a flight of just over 5 hrs during which he flew deep into the Pennines and also visited Catterick, Ripon, Garforth and Pateley Bridge, achieving a maximum altitude of 14,000' asl. George Rowden, taking a Mile High pupil for a flight in the DG500, took advantage of the high tow to contact the wave over Disforth, eventually climbing to 8,500' asl over Boroughbridge before a high speed return to site in a flight time of 1:02. These were the only significant wave flights of the day. George also provided a day course member with flights of 1:02 from both an AT and a winch launch as the hill provided consistent lift all day, with thermal thrown in for good measure. Other 2 seater flights to achieve an hour or more included Bruce Grain and Tony Crossman with 1:05 in K21 JVZ and Albert Newbery and Steve Ogden with exactly and hour in K21 KLW. The visitors from the Kent GC were clustered at the top end of the duration board, with flight times 5:10, 4:00 and 3:34 hrs while YGC members also made use of the conditions, Conrad Thwaites having 2:55 in his Discus, Dave McKinney 2:25 in his ASW28 and Fred Brown 2:11 in his Ventus. Paul Bulmer in his Swallow also graced the skies for 1:47.