|The soundings forecast for 1300 gmt|
|The Zugvogel 3B ready to fly|
The other syndicate members bravely nominated me to fly first. I ensured that I was well strapped in and that everything was secure ( I had an idea of what might happen next ) and off I went. The ground run was a little long ( windsock still limp ) and the initial climb was unremarkable. At about 500 feet all hell broke loose as I flew into the rotor and keeping the glider climbing correctly took a lot of control input. Releasing the cable at 1000 feet the glider began a wild dance through the rotor. Don't fight it Stephen, work with it.
Thankfully I was climbing in this rough air and suddenly at 1200 feet the air went completely smooth. This is WAVE. After a short, slow climb, I made my first mistake. Convinced that the climb rates should be better than this, I pushed forward to the east looking for what I thought was going to be the primary wave. In my defence, remember that the sky was blue so I had no visual references to help me. I flew into violent rotor and deeply sinking air and had to do a quick about turn and head for the airfield arriving adjacent to the runway at 800 feet convinced that I was going to have to land shortly.
This is where fate took a hand in the events and I flew into very strong rising air. Turning steeply I centred what turned out to be a wave enhanced thermal bubble which propelled me skywards with the variometers off the clock. Four circles later I was passing 1800 feet when the air went smooth again. Turning south across the wind I followed the wave bar in smooth lift and promised myself to climb first before going exploring again.
|Looking west towards Dartmoor|
|Yours truely relaxing in the sun |
( the left strap looks a bit dishevelled after the rotor )
|The hazy view with this thin cloud layer quite invisible from the ground|
|Roger ready to launch|
|Roger guides the Zugvogel up the wire. |
( notice the limp windsock and the haze trapped as a cap cloud over Dartmoor beyond )
|Roger's View of the airfield from the south looking north|
|Roger topped out at just over 4100 feet|
Our special thanks to Allan Holland for the winch driving and to Alan Carter for helping us to get the glider ready without flying it.
A great flying day for experienced pilots.