Dartmoor Gliding News-Sunday 20th March 2016

There is a motto inside the canopy frame of one of the private gliders which reads, “Remember, Gliding is Fun!” Sometimes this is easy to forget, particularly when you’re at 800ft battling it out at with a thermal which seems intent on showing you the exit, rather than welcoming you in.

The ‘fun’ in gliding is very often realised only after the event - upon reflection - and this was clearly evident on Chris Owen’s face after his 14 minute jaunt in the K-8: “There was lift everywhere!”, he said, “I just couldn’t put a foot wrong..!” Nor could recently requalified Josef Nobbs a little later, with his 1hr 1min Flight of the Day a little later. Yes, there was plenty of fun to be had at the airfield today, but the question is, what conditions were they flying in?

Returning member Jerry Wellington framed by parallel bars of wave.
 Although the clouds were forming parallel bars (see photo of returning member Jerry Wellington), and the wind remained in the North-east at ~10kts, unlike yesterday (when it was possible to fly proper beats and stay climbing – with full airbrake deployed!), today the only to gain height seemed to be to treat the lift as thermic and circle within it. Unless you were a trainee, in which case you were just as likely to find yourself assuming the Recovery Attitude as the cable mysteriously parted company from the glider halfway through the launch.

One again, thanks go to winch drivers Barry Green, Dave Downton, Leith Whittington and the retrieve teams who made four expeditions to the southside common in search of the drogue parachute.

Our visitors were sensibly dressed up against the cold
We also hosted our first visitors on Sunday of 2016: Len Clayton, Jake and Jason Madelin and Paul Elliot being flown by Roger Appleboom in the morning and early afternoon. We were also treated to our first ‘walk-in’, that rare breed of passer-by who just fancies giving it a try. In this case, however, our walk-in came with previous: Adam Fox-Edwards, mine host at the Arundell Arms, Lifton, was previously an RAF Tornado and Tucano pilot, and so by Flight #3 was probably critiquing Roger’s flying rather than the other way around! (see photo). We look forward to seeing Adam again, as his duties at the Arundell permit.

Visitor Adam Fox-Edwards, who flew with Roger Appleboom.
 Analysis of the log shows that we flew a total of 48 launches today, with launch rates in the afternoon almost reaching 9 per hour (two 7s and one 8), clear evidence, not only that Rich Roberts was back on the field, but also of the positive team effort made by all today – many thanks!

Martin Cropper

1 comment:

Rich Roberts said...

Days are getting longer, 60 next target!
Well done everyone, bring on the summer.