The fair-weather forecast brought out a good selection of stalwarts, newcomers, triallers, trainees, visitors and even ab-initio students. A very pleasant day in some welcome November sunshine was had – many thanks to those on duty.
However, the weather did spring a little surprise (though with no effect on flight durations). Our local Met guru Mike Thorne was able to explain these striking cloud formations – known as “fallstreak holes”. I won’t attempt to repeat his explanation but you can look it up on Wikipedia. Certainly not something one comes across in the Bronze syllabus!
Saturday 13th saw uni, club and day members make a decent turnout for a November Saturday. With a northerly wind, tales of last Sunday’s wave abounded, with Mike as optimistic as ever. It was great to see Clive again after a period of absence, and it was like he’d never been away as he immediately set to work abusing the unbelievably diligent, hard working, under-appreciated and youthful LPC!
The wave never materialised, but thirty-four launches kept the club fleet of three Puchaczs and two Astirs busy until the light started to fade. There was some soaring to be found, with the longest flight of the day being 34 minutes from the winch. The motor glider also returned to the field from its maintenance, making two test flights which were reported to be satisfactory.
When the light started fading and bellies were rumbling, the launch point was packed up and around 20 people headed to the clubhouse for a chilli and raffle organised by J&J in support of the Wiltshire Air Ambulance. The unbelievably diligent, hard working, under-appreciated and youthful barman kept glasses topped up, and it was not long before everyone was tucking into the chilli (a straw poll suggests a unanimous verdict of it being absolutely delicious). The raffle was drawn, with some winning big, while others didn’t even get their bus fare home.
In case you’ve forgotten Julie is cooking Chilli Con Carne with Rice and Salad (very mild or medium heat with extra chilli’s available for those that like even more heat) on Saturday 20th Nov at 5pm (or after flying as appropriate)
A raffle is also being held, if you have any prizes please bring them along on Saturday, tickets on sale to the last moment (£1 a strip of 5) – all profits & raffle proceeds will go the WAA.
Hope to see you there – please email or text J & J if you’d like food to avoid wastage (we will be cooking extra portions)
We had a very useful demonstration today of the latest EuroFox 915iS tug. We did four Puchacz tows to 2000ft and Mark and I had a couple of passenger flights to assess the handling. I need to look at the traces but the initial impression is that it climbs exceptionally well at around 7000ft/min.
Here is a video taken on one of the tows from a Puchacz, with apologies for the tug being out of focus, but it shows the climb rate..
We welcome Tim Brunskill’s to the club with his K6E.
I took a trip last week to “The Gliding Heritage Centre” at Lasham with Phil D from the Bath Wilts maintenance team.
Phil and I had a great day out there.
The people we met were really terrific, knowledgeable, passionate about aviation, and generous with their time. Particular thanks to Glyn B and Gary P for making us feel so welcome and giving us a fascinating insight into the world of Vintage Gliding .
The Lasham Cafe is great too. Once our trip round the Heritage Centre was complete we popped into the Cafe for a late lunch. Phil tucked into a very nice looking piece of victoria sponge, while I enjoyed a delicious toasted teacake with butter and blackcurrant jam, all washed down with a refreshing cup of tea of course .
I would describe the Gliding Heritage Centre as a magical and truly inspiring place to visit. Possibly the perfect tonic for one of those stable airmass days 😎.
Link to GHC Website below if you would like some more information:
Well, a flying week with four very good cross country days and one sunny and flyable day, must be some sort of record.
Despite not actually having very many club members flying, four pilots achieved Badge flights:
Martin Davidson, Diamond Goal.
Keith Longden, Silver distance, 5 hours and 100K Diploma.
Mark Smallwood, 5 hours and Silver height.
Bill Prince, Silver distance.
Ian Simmonds from Dorset GC, Silver distance, Silver height and 100K diploma part 1.
As well as these flights, there were several successful 200K – 500K flights, and three field landings with no problems. Sorry I have no pictures, but believe several have some from the air of Keith’s glider in a field at Longleat yesterday.
Most of all though, a big thank you to the winch drivers and tug pilots for volunteering to launch us.
What a day this was! RASP forecasted a booming day, other sites were doom & gloom. It turned out to be a mixture of both as a few brave people rigged in the gloomy conditions. Club flying went ahead but with few students & only one person per single seater booked. Alastair returned from a 100km o /r to Wantage just as the conditions showed signs of picking up & a fair number of us achieved good long flights in what I can only describe as square thermals.
We welcomed Ian & Richard from the Dorset GC who bought along their Cirruses & Julian & Gav flew a lot of sorties together practising their patter ahead of completing the Assistant Cat course. Julian took the picture of me flying Bluebird at around 3500ft.
Jim Hasker completed his first day as duty Full Cat unharmed & not too stressed under the circumstances.
We rounded off the day with a BBQ, sadly only 8 people attended but sitting out in the warm sun with good food & great people makes the effort all worthwhile. Bring on the Vintage weekend!
We will be hosting a BBQ at the club next Saturday. To meet current regulations you (currently) need to bring (& cook) your own food & bring your own cutlery, crockery & drinks (although that aspect may change). There will be no costs levied. The club will supply the BBQ & cooking utensils. If the weather is inclement then the western end of the hangar will be cleared for tables & seating. Hope to see you there.
On a day that I was tempted to scrub, the few of us that flew had a great day, none better than Matt Oakes who I had the privelidge to send off on his first solo, well done that man! Tim Fletcher & Jim Hasker renewed their instructor ratings & last but by no mean’s least Gavin & Julian flew the spare Puch for nigh on two hours. Roll on next week
We were treated to two terrific mid-week flying days this week 🙂.
Both days were filled with glorious sunshine, with a wind-chill that cooled things considerably on occasion. The upper wind drifted from 040 – 080 degrees over the two days, and between 5 – 10kts. The cool air mass and warming spring sun generated some very good soaring opportunities for the time of year. Lots of extended local soaring flights were enjoyed on both days, and John G clocked up the Clubs first Cross Country of the year on Thursday with a very respectable 205k ‘out and return’ to Ledbury 🙂 👍🏻.
Mike J, Phil G, and Andy F were busy instructing. While John H and Phil R were busy flying the Tug. 🙂 👍🏻.
A very pleasant couple of days flying from the Park dear aviators 😎.
I took a few pictures from the two days to share with you all, hope you enjoy them.
We have returned to the skies once more dear aviators! .
It was a cool crisp Spring day at the Park today, but it did warm up pleasantly from around mid-day onwards. The upper wind was approx. 040 degrees at a brisk 19kts. The cool North Easterly air mass and warm April sun treated us to some much appreciated soaring. It wasn’t Cross Country weather at the Park today, but all attending Pilots did enjoy extended local soaring opportunities.
It was an absolute delight to be back in the air again following lockdown 😎.
A total of 20 Glider flights and 4 Touring Motor Glider flights today.
I took a few pictures from the day to share with you all, hope you enjoy them.