Friday 3rd to Sunday 5th November 2023
Posted: 06/11/2023 09:39
Friday 3rd. Storm Ciaran had moved off into the North Sea and weakened, its local legacy being a flying day with a moderate WNW'ly wind under relatively sunny skies, the wind dying down to light towards the end of the day. The result was a hill soaring day with 12 AT launches, 2 by private owners and 7 flights of over 30 minutes, of which 3 where over an hour. Fred Brown in his Ventus ct and Dean Crosby in his LS10t had the longest flights, 2.28 and 2.12 respectively. with Fred getting to 2,700' and Dean to 3,400' asl in weak wave, with wave enhanced hill lift keeping both pilots in a 900-1500' QFE band. Fred stayed local, mainly soaring the ridge just round the corner from Gormire, while Dean flew to within 1.5 km of Tontine. The other > 1 hr pilot was John Forrester who had 1:32 in Astir DPO, spending his time soaring the main bowl at 500-1,000' QFE. The 2 K21s were kept busy with 5 First Flight pupils and members, Clive Swain/Amelia Forrester having 48 minutes in KLW off the 1st flight of the day and Clive/Duncan Pask having 44 minutes in the same glider, while Clive/Tor Tavener in KLW had 37 minutes off the last flight of the day, landing around 1615 hrs. 4 of the First Flight pupils had flights of between 23-27 minutes but towards the end of the day Ian McFarland took his FF pupil for 40 minutes in K21 JVZ.
Saturday 4th. An advancing weather front brought low cloud and rain by midday, the light SE'ly wind backing into the NNE by evening and strengthening to light to moderate, the skies clearing after dusk. Although the weather didn't allow any flying the evening clearance did allow members and guests to enjoy the Bonfire night party, food being followed by the lighting of the bonfire and a firework display as the following photos show.
Sunday 5th. A bright and generally sunny day as a light to moderate WNW'ly wind slowly backed into the W and decreased to light towards the end of the flying day. 16 ATs were flown off runway 24, with runways 24 or 20 being used for landing. The conditions did provide some soft hill soaring which the 3 private owners who launched utilised to soar for more than 30 minutes, with Tomer Altman in Astir DPO also joining this group with a flight of 1:17 while soaring the southern half of the main bowl, mainly at 500-800' QFE, although he did manage a climb to 1,000' QFE towards the end of his flight. Darren Lodge in his LS8-18 was the first pilot to exceed 30 minutes, his 37 minutes coming as a result of a slow descent from release height aided by some weak lift in front of the main bowl and a period of weak hill lift on it. Bob Calvert in is Discus 2ct had 50 minutes, while Steve Thompson in his Ventus bt had 1:28 in hill lift concentrated mainly over the Gormire end of the main bowl, initially at 700-900' QFE, but then at 500-700' QFE.