Monday 26th to Wednesday 28th June 2023
Posted: 30/06/2023 10:30
Monday 26th. A moderate/moderate to fresh at times W'ly blew all day, so it was winching off runway 24 with hill, thermal and wave lift utilised, thermal lift being the predominant choice for pilots. A number of cross countries were flown, but wave interference led to large blue areas and weak thermals putting paid to some tasks. John Ellis in his DG800 flew by far the longest cross country of the day, 355 km with TPs at Doncaster, Carlton Bank and Doncaster NW ending the flight with a landing on runway 24 after a 30 km long base leg (final glide), describing the conditions as hard work. Steve Thompson in his Ventus bt, declared a 313 km yoyo with TPs at Filey, Harrogate N and Hornsea Mere, but due to the aforementioned wave interference found the going, particulary into wind, very slow and abandoned the task after turning Harrogate N completing 160 kms. George Rowden in his LS8-18 attempted a 100 km FAI triangle with TPs at Northallerton, Harrogate N and Sutton on Forest but abandoned the task en route to Harrogate N due to a big blue hole and heavy sink., but then flew 132 km round other local TPs. The existence of wave was noted by a number of pilots, who used it to get above the 5,000' asl cloud base by a few hundred feet , but only Bob Calvert in his Discus 2ct fully exploited the wave, climbing to a maximum altitude of 8,000' asl 3 km SW of Ripon having contacted the wave just S of Ripon. Bob also used wave lift over Easingwold, Boltby and just SW of Northallerton but to progressively lower altitudes. Bob's flight time of over 7 hrs was matched by James Prosser in his Ventus ct whose local soaring included a visit to Boroughbridge and by Clive Swain who added a trip to the other side of Ripon to his local soaring. Tony Drury was one of a number of pilots to visit Tontine in his 2:20 flight, others being his syndicate partner John Marsh earlier in the day and Bill Payton/Sarah Stubbs in Bill's DG1000t, who interspersed periods of hill soaring with thermal soaring, visiting Tontine as well as 4 other local TPs. All the above pilots were among the 13 who had flights of over an hour, with 14 other flights being between 30 and 60 minutes, including Bruce Grain/Steve Sanderson's 44 minutes O/R to Tontine in the DG1000. Flying continued well into the evening as the winching conditions were used by a number of instructors to consolidate winching and winch failure teaching techniques, the day's launch total being 38, including one AT for the day's only First Flight pupil.
Tuesday 27th. A approaching warm front brought rain at times and a lowering cloud base that blanketed the hill from 1300 hrs so there was no flying.
Wednesday 28th. The warm front had moved off into the North Sea but the cold front was yet to cross the UK, so it was a day of overcast skies and some early bits and pieces of rain. The weather cleared sufficiently to allow flying to commence around 1230 hrs and end around mid afternoon with 7 ATs, including 2 for First Flight pupils. A lack of lift meant extended circuits were the order of the day with only two flights over 25 minutes and a further one over 20 minutes. Laurie Clarke/Camom Coonly in K21 JVZ flew 26 minutes off a 3,000' tow, while Guy Hartland had 26 minutes with one of the First Flight pupils and 24 minutes with the other.