Thursday 9th to Saturday 11th November 2017

Posted: 12/11/2017 15:49

Thursday 9th.  A bright and  sunny start to the day did not presage an early start to flying as the NW'ly wind was strong enough to generate rough and  turbulent conditions on both take off and landing.  However, a slow backing of the wind, eventually into the WSW, the latter change being accompanied by an increase in upper cloud, allowed flying to commence around 1400 hrs, those who had patiently waited for a chance to fly being rewarded by some soaring conditions. 6 ATs resulted, all but one being in club 2 seaters, the remaining AT being by Geoff Wright in the Astir, Geoff claiming both the longest flight of the day, 1:23, but also the best climb, reaching around 8,000' asl in wave, although he didn't stray too far from site.   All but one of the 2 seater flights climbed to over 4,700' asl, with Jesper Mjels and David McKinney getting to 5,900' asl during their flight of just over an hour in the DG1000, while Andy Parish and visitor Bob Symons, off a low launch failure, climbed to 5,200' asl in their flight of 40 minutes in K21 JVZ.

Friday 10th.   A moderate, but very gusty WNW'ly wind peaking in the mid 30 kts, resulted in a decision to leave the gliders in the hangars, so a  non-flying day resulted.

Saturday 11th.  A light to moderate NW'ly slowly backed into the W over the course of the day, with flying commencing off runway 24 soon after 1000 hrs behind Pawnee FEV although the conditions resulted in pilots choosing a number of runway landing options.  All three available 2 seaters were busy dealing with the day's 5 First Flight pupils and members, while single seater flights were restricted to Tony Drury's test flight of the recently returned DG303 and Duncan Pask's flight in his LS10.  Lift was hard to find, although there were a few Cumulus during the afternoon, with the result that none of the flights in club gliders exceeded an hour and only three exceeded 30 minutes, with even the day's Mile High flight failing to breach the 30 minute barrier.  Private owner, Duncan Packs, on the other hand, managed to stay airborne for 1:21, although whether this was due to  his use of natural or iron thermals or a combination thereof is unknown to the writer. The best of the rest, to coin a phrase, saw John Marsh and George Claydon have 34 minutes in the DG1000, this flight time being aided by a tow to 4,000' QFE but hindered by some spinning practice.  John Marsh also featured in the > 30 minute list with 31 minutes in K21 KLW with Dave Murgatroyd, with Darren Lodge making up the list by having the same time solo in the DG1000,  After the end of the flying day, Andy Parish briefied instructors  in  the briefing room on aspects of instruction and procedures at YGC, with Polly Whitehead, YGC's safety officer, fresh from a BGA safety meeting in Portmoak,  covering safety issues.

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