Thursday 21st to Monday 25th May 2020.
Posted: 26/05/2020 14:12
Thursday 21st. A moist and light to moderate airstream from the SW/WSW provided another soaring day with thermal and wave, although it took a little while for soaring to get going. Robin Hutchinson, taking off around 1045 hrs in K21 JVZ posted the first soaring flight of the day, 45 minutes, one of 10 flights out of the 17 to launch on the day to exceed 30 minutes. Around an hour later, Bill Payton, flying the DG303 had the longest flight of the day, 3:02, during which he climbed in wave to around 7,700' asl, the third best climb of the day. A further 4 pilots exceeded an hour while a further 5 used the wave to climb above 5,000' asl. Alan Beaumont, flying the DG500 climbed to around 8,200' asl in his flight of 1:14, closely followed by John May in K21 JVZ who climbed to around 8,100' asl, in his flight of 56 minutes. Peter Goodchild in his Pic 20, John Carter in K21 KLW and Kelly Teagle in her Kestrel 19 all climbed to around 5,200' asl with flight times of 1;26, 44 minutes and 1:42 respectively. Albert Newbery, having had 1:16 in KLW, completed the day's flying with a 44 minute test flight in Astir DPO. In accordance with current cross country restrictions, nobody went too far from site but Northallerton, the Tontine, Helmsley, Thirsk and Easingwold were all visited.
Friday 22nd, A surprisingly deep depression tracking to the NW of Scotland meant is was a non flying day at site due to wind speeds, gusts of 45 kts from the SW being reported from nearby RAF Topcliffe.
Saturday 23rd. The active depression had not moved or filled much, so it was again too windy to fly, with RAF Topcliffe again reporting gusts of 45 kts, with the wind now blowing from the WSW.
Sunday 24th. The wind had declined to become moderate from the W, so it was a hill soaring day, with some early indications of wave, although light rain fell at times from generally cloudy skies. Darren Lodge in his LS8 was first to launch, landing after just over 3 hours and posting the highest altitude of the day, 3,300 asl, the rest of the day's 13 winch launches getting to between 1000 and 1400' QFE. O/Rs to Boltby were popular, while Steve Thompson in his Discus sampled the lift on Cowesby Bowl in his flight of 4 hours and John Carter had a brief exploration of the forward ridge in the DG1000 during a flight of just over an hour. Most of the day's other flights had durations of between 30 and 50 minutes with 3 of the 4 club 2 seaters being flown but no club single seaters.
Monday 25th. A light S'ly, as high pressure again began to become established from the SW, gradually increased in strength and veered into the W towards the end of the flying day. Cumulus began to form by mid morning but gradually disappeared to leave a blue afternoon. Pilots reported some strong lift at times, particuarly over the North Yorkshire Moors, but most had to make do with some scrappy lift at times in order to remain airborne. The flying log was dominated by private owners who contributed 15 of the 20 launches flown off runway 20 behind the Eurofox and the thermic conditions meant that only one of these flights failed to last longer than an hour and even that lasted 53 minutes. The LS8s of Darren Lodge and George Rowden posted the longest flights, 4:40 and 4:20 respectively, with Rob Bailey having 3:45 in his ASG29. 6 other pilots had between 2 & 3 hours including Andrew Clusky who visited the Tontine, KirbyMoorside, Foston and Sutton on the Forest in his Shark with a flight time of 2:08 and Ritchie Toon who did an O/R to Pocklington in his LS7 having learned that they were open to visitors. Everyone else stayed local with the result that there was some good practice at entering, centering and leaving shared thermals. Others to be in the > 2 hrs group included Tor Tavener, flying K21 JVZ, who had 2:46 off the first launch of the day and Chris Booker with 2:20 flying the DG303. Thermic conditions lasted until the late afternoon before some high cover edged in from the west around 1800 hrs to end a very good thermic day.