Dartmoor Gliding News-Sunday 16th April 2017

The Armchair Pilot, looking at today's photos, might well have concluded that the blue sky, peppered with cumulus, made it absolutely certain that no effort would be required to stay aloft for hours on end. The reality was a little different as the NW'ly wind gave little chance for thermals to develop locally and it was only by having a clear strategy before launch that we (notably Roger Appleboom with our visitors) achieved soaring flights.

With Peter Howarth directing operations, there was lots of training/recertifying work to be done and we got underway a little after 1030 with a Training List which included Chris Owen, Ed Borlase, Dave Downton, Pete Harvey (check Flights), Phillip Selwood and Callum Doyle.

Visitor Hilary Nicholls, from London SW18 (Earlsfield), flew with IFP Roger Appleboom.
Hugo Nicholls enjoyed a 10 mins soaring flight with Roger.
Hugo’s brother Ollie also flew with Roger.
Exploring the inner atmosphere a little more extensively were Leith Whittington, Paula Howarth and Adrian Irwin, but for no longer than 11 mins (joint honours to the last two mentioned), whilst the aforesaid Roger Appleboom enjoyed showing Hilary Nicholls and her sons Hugo and Ollie, (and afternoon visitor Dave Carter) what can be achieved with no engine other than some dark grey cloud over Blackdown... We also welcomed potential new member Tony Forth (who also attended yesterday, and came back..!): Tony is a veteran of Shennington and former Skylark owner who was quickly shoved into driving the retrieve (to prevent him from leaving) before flying with Pete Howarth.

Afternoon Visitor, Dave Carter, about to aviate.
Whilst it might be said that the day didn't deliver quite as much as expected, we nevertheless got in some very useful training (inc. 6 simulated cable breaks, courtesy of PCBH...) and, after 39 launches, all went away happy with what they had achieved today.

Martin Cropper

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