Wednesday 21st to Thursday 22nd July 2021
Posted: 23/07/2021 16:00
Wednesday 21st. A low overcast brought in on a light ESE'ly flow from the North Sea didn't start to break up until late morning, delaying the start of flying until early afternoon. Thereafter, 22 ATs were flown off runway 20 with most landings on the same runway. Five private owners rigged and contributed 6 launches to the day's total of 22, with Tomasz Rusin having two launches in his DG300, the second of exactly an hour making up for the first of 26 minutes. This illustrated the difficulties of the day, with isolated Cumulus giving non-reliable lift, consequently, although all but one of the private owner flights lasted more than an hour, no one ventured far from the site. the longest foray being Rob Bailey's visit to the East Coast main line in his ASG29. Rob had 1:33, with Albert and Martin Newbery in their DG1000 having 2:14, the best of the day. andPaul Bulmer in his Libelle having 1:36. The day's soaring limitations can be judged by the fact that only one flight got above launch height and the Newbery's flight of 2:14 had a maximum height of 2,000' QFE. The day also saw 4 First Flight pupils and a Day Course member flown, one of the First Flight pupils having 31 minutes, the best of the rest in terms of flight duration.
Thursday 22nd. Clear blue skies and a very light NNW'ly wind saw the first launch off runway 24 around 1040 hrs, but operations soon switched to runway 20 and remained there for the rest of the day as 20 ATs were flown. Cumulus soon started to blossom over the North Yorks Moors but were very slow to appear over the surrounding vales of York and Pickering. Cumulus development continued apace over the Moors and quickly led to virtually complete cloud cover. 6 private owners launched and found reliable lift over the moors but sparse cloud elsewhere, not all of it giving lift. These conditions, coupled with very poor visibility especially close to cloud base, led to the abandonment of cross country plans by the majority, with the exception of Chris Handzlik in his DG300, who flew to Goole and Burn. Martyn Johnson in his DG600 got as far as Rufforth attempting to get to Pontefract, while Andrew Cluskey in his Shark, Rob Bailey in his ASG29 and George Rowden in his LS8-18 all gave up going south on their tasks approximately half way between Easingwold and York. Going north was, if anything worse, as the clouds stopped well short of the Tontine due to sea air, although the cloud base at around 4,000' asl was considerably better than that around the site at the time, although this improved latter in the day. The day was also marked by a number of usable convergences allowing Bruce Grain/ Charlie Atkins in K21 KLW and John Carter/Kevin Briggs in K21 JVZ to have 39 and 44 minutes soaring respectively. All the private owners had flights of between 1:50 and 2:37 on a day when 5 First Flight pupils were introduced to gliding.