Dartmoor Gliding News–Talgarth Expedition

Sunday 23rd March 2014

On Sunday four intrepid ridge runners Andrew, Phil, Malcolm and Roger all travelled to Talgarth - 970 ft above sea level ( ASL ) in anticipation of a weeks exhilarating week of soaring the Welsh hills. A party of young glider pilots from HMS Culdrose were also spending the week there with our chairman Martin as one of their instructors

Gerry Martin, duty instructor, explaining the field.
The weather forecast for the week was not looking good and although the rain forecast for Monday did not materialise the wind was southerly which apparently is the one direction which curtails flying from  the site. Consequently as is usual in these situations Don went into lecture mode and gave everyone including the Culdrose contingent a talk on ridge soaring .

Having had enough of Dons lectures  or maybe as he was by then hoarse we decided to go to Hay on Wye for coffee travelling by the scenic route via Hay common which he explained was the place to land should one fail to soar the hill from  Y Das to Hay Bluff  ( 2338 ft asl ) . Very reassuring !!

Circuit planning in K6, field below, Talgarth town in the distance
 The wind on Tuesday was North  Westerly 10 to 15 knots so we cracked on speedily ( Phil having his check flight even before the official briefing ) so that we all had our first check flights before lunch time when again we were curtailed by the incoming rain. During these check flights all four of us had chance to practice ridge soaring on Y Das .

Gliders on line
Wednesday the wind was from the north west , fairly light so that Mynydd Troad ( 1998 ft asl ) was the hill to be soared. By mid day we were all cleared to fly solo in our own aircraft so that each one of us had half hour flights or so  in the afternoon although the hills were not  working well.

Later that day the wind backed so Don took Malcolm onto Y Das where they enjoyed a good hours soaring.

Andrew waiting for the 'all out'
That evening we were all looking forward to having a full days gliding in our own aircraft but sadly on Thursday the wind had  turned easterly with low mist and rain so in the morning we had a detailed lecture on the Tephigram  from some odd looking kamikaze pilot.

Don briefing in mysterious 'kamakasi-style headgear.
After lunch the weather was still unflyable so reluctantly we all pulled up stumps and returned home.
Clearly we would have liked more flying but it must be said that we all enjoyed ourselves and thanks must be made to Roger and all his sou chefs  who seemed to magic up lovely evening meals. Mind you the reason might have been because the beer and wine was stored in the kitchen.

Andrew Beaumont

Dartmoor Gliding News–Saturday 29th March 2014

With strong south easterly winds forecast we expected the club to be busy with members wanting to use any wave that developed. In the event the club was very quiet with just enough members to allow us to operate; perhaps everyone was busy shopping for Mothering Sunday tomorrow? It was a nice sunny day but it was cold in the strengthening winds.

The early flying was interesting with wide areas of wave lift available right off the end of the wire. This led to Matthew Wiles commandeering the K13 for an hours flight in an attempt to get a 1000 meter height gain for his Silver Badge but the wave was very low level and, try as he might, this just wasn’t possible today.

This picture of K7M G-DDAK was taken by Matthew Wiles from the K13 
At launch heights the wind was in excess of 40 knots from the SE with the wave sitting north-south so you could stay in the lift with the glider stationary in relation to the ground. Making progress to the south required increased flying speeds. The glider could could then be “reversed” back to the north while maintaining a SE heading by just slowing down. Great fun.

Lucy, Marvin and Matthew all enjoyed their flights in the lively conditions.
We had several visitors today. The Brooks family from Teignmouth  arrived with the fearless 11 year old Lucy, 16 year old Matthew and their 16 year old German exchange student Marvin all very keen to fly. They all enjoyed some soaring in the lively conditions. They left the airfield with big smiles on their faces. I am sure they will be back for some more flying.

One Day Course Candidate Andy Small with instructor Ged Neviski
Also with us today was One Day Course candidate Andy Small who visited last Saturday and helped out during the winch crisis. Andy is very keen to learn to fly and took a couple of flights with Ged. The air aloft though was not really conducive to learning to control the aircraft so he will visit again to complete his course. After we finished flying, Andy was given a controls lesson and basic handling skills training on the simulator in preparation for his next visit.

Amazing how dry things look already from the air
With the wind strengthening and becoming ever more gusty, the approaches became increasingly “lively” ( or maybe should that be “character forming” ) and by 4.30 it was decided that discretion is definitely the better part of valour so the gliders were returned to the hangar.

For those pilots who flew today, the satisfaction gained from exercising their flying skills was easy to see from the grins in the clubhouse. For those who could not make it today, you definitely missed out.


Dartmoor Gliding News–Wednesday 26th March 2014

A day of three parts really.

To start with, the usual early risers had got the airfield set up by the time time the murk lifted and two privately-owned gliders, the Open Cirrus and Astir G-CJSK, were soon rigged and ready. People-wise, we were well down on numbers, with Phil and Andrew at Talgarth, and Jorg away on a course. However, we enjoyed the company of Angela  Banfield returning for a second attempt at her one day course (bringing with her a bag of chocolates etc. to sweeten us up), and also temporary member Andy Davey, from Wadebridge. (Gastronomically, standards continue to rise, with bigger and better packets of doughnuts provided by John Rogers, and yours truly fulfilling orders for steak and kidney pies from the butcher in Holsworthy.)

Bob avoiding the hail storm in the K8
Part 2?  Well, the weather improved and 'cycled'. Visibility was pretty grim for most of the time, but between showers (including some heavy hail) there were clearances followed by strong thermals and cumulus with bases of 3,000 feet or more over the airfield. The ML winch worked superbly and despite a light cross- (occasionally tail-) wind, delivered launches to well above 1,000 feet in most cases. Best flight of the day was by Ged in the Open Cirrus (achieving 55 minutes and a climb to above 3,000 feet), while John Bolt and I each enjoyed half an hour or more  in the K8.

Today's "ace of the base" Ged after nearly and hour in the Open Cirrus
Late in the day the Zugvogel was extracted from the hangar, but sadly rather too late for pilots to use it to its full potential. At this time of year it is particularly important to get the gliders prepared and to the launch point at the start of the day. But with so few people around, some were working 'above and beyond the call' getting the show on the road and helping others,and consequently missed out on the best soaring opportunities.

Today's launch queue
And now to Part 3. During the afternoon we suffered several cable breaks (possibly due to cable on the ML nearing its sell-by date?) and also some problems involving the interface between the winch and the retrieve vehicle during cable tow-out. Ways of improving performance in this area are now being explored. Not only were we on the verge of hypothermia while things were being sorted out, but we lost an hour or more's worth of launches. With things back on track, we eventually we wrapped things up at around 1800 hours after achieving 26 launches. (This was in contrast to a fortnight ago when - through slick and energetic operation - we managed more than 30 with only one cable.)

Angela waiting to get her One Day Course off the ground
Flying-wise, after a 'hesitant' start (not helped by thermic conditions), Angela enjoyed her flying with Steve and will come back to complete her course next week. Meanwhile Andy flew with Ged, proving that he had not lost all of his skills gained in the dark and distant past, when he trained and soloed both at North Hill and with the RAF Gliding and Soaring Association. Reflecting on the performance of members present, it was a pleasure to observe how competently - and safely - they flew, taking poor visibility, a cross-wind and occasional launch failures failures in their stride.

I just hope that more members seldom seen during the winter turn up soon to start regaining currency.  And I stress 'start', because a couple of launches and a simulated cable break do not a current pilot make. 

Bob Pirie

Dartmoor Gliding News–Sunday 23rd March 2014

The day dawned bright and clear and an already good turnout at the club was enhanced by Rick Wiles, eager to test out the repaired ML winch and give some winch driver  training to the assemblage of trainees.

In the lee of the hangar all seemed well however, it was only when we got K-7M DAK to the eastern end launch point that the strength of the wind revealed itself, plus its almost 60 degrees across the runway.

K7M G-DDAK on the launch
Whilst waiting for the latest strain of sheep to be cleared from the runway, the gustiness of the wind also became apparent, however keen as we were to get member Andy Davey into the atmosphere we pressed on, despite Luke Botham struggling to keep the into wind wingtip on the ground.  A swift and muscular ascent  to 1100ft, courtesy  of the repaired winch, followed by an even more rapid whisk along the downwind leg rapidly confirmed that conditions were beyond the pale, particularly the gusts coming up and over the approach/ touchdown area and it was decided to take the K7M back to the relatively tranquil haven of the hangar apron.

The return to the clubhouse presented a welcome opportunity for those who needed it to rush up their skills on the simulator whilst Rick professed himself to be happy that the repair to the winch had proved itself in some pretty testing conditions. 

If March did not quite come in as a lamb, it's certainly going out like a lion!

Martin Cropper

Dartmoor Gliding News - Saturday 22nd March 2014

Cometh the Hour – Cometh the Man.

The club was in trouble. Both of the winches were inoperable. No way to launch the gliders then. So, did the members just stay away? Not a bit of it.

They rolled up their sleeves and got on with putting things right, helping out where they could. Those with engineering skills worked on the winches. Everyone else got on the the other jobs around the site.

Karon cleaned the kitchen before arranging members evenings with our Interclub League Team Captain Mike Gadd.  Andrew Swann and grandfather Mike repaired the chimney / flue for the woodburner which was damaged some time ago in the last major storm of the winter when the wind had ripped the canopy from the front of the clubhouse. As it was blown over the clubhouse roof it brought down the outer chimney which also disturbed the interior flue system.

The newly replaced chimney
Diesel fitter Ray turned up to continue work on the ML winch engine. This time he had a secret weapon, his friend who had been rebuilding diesels and pumps for more than 40 years. A previously undiagnosed fault was found and duly corrected. Time for a test flight. K7M G_DDAK was taken to the launch point and the airfield got ready. We decided  to sacrifice CFI Don to the task. The atmosphere was tense as we initiated the test launch and, miracle of miracles, the winch's power had returned. Don used the great height he got from the launch to go soaring for half an hour or so.

The early sky looked great. But there was work to be done.
The ML winch engine is back and producing more power than ever, winch drivers please note. It was not out of trouble yet though as the winch driver reported defective brakes. Although initially diagnosed as a faulty master cylinder, the more experienced among us realised that this was just the return of a repetitive maintenance issue. Replacing the disc pads and shims returned the brake system to full health. The winch was used for the rest of the afternoon to ensure as many members flew as possible before the rain stopped play.

Yours truly replacing the disk pads on the ML winch.
Rick is delighted that there was a picture of me working instead of sitting in the back seat of a glider. 
The GusLaunch winch was still broken. Winch master Rick Wiles took the lead and fitted a spare starter motor he had salted away from the recent engine change. This sounds easy but involved several hours of heavy lifting and fitting bolts that seemed to require 2 foot long double jointed fingers. As the starter was a different design from the original all the electrical connections had to be reworked. Once done, the winch engine burst into life with the first stab on the starter button. Great.

Rick buried in the depths of the winch replacing the starter motor
Worth a special mention today was a visitor, Andy Small. He had arrived at the club for a One Day Course. This could not be flown so he rolled up his sleeves and worked with Chris Matten in an attempt to resurrect to Perranporth winch ( As a long stop in case the other winch work failed ). By the end of the day the winch had been started, drums released and the controls checked out. Andy did manage to fly at the end of the afternoon. He flew with instructor Mike Sloggett for the hangar flight and will return very soon for his One Day Course.

The fall back position was to get the Perranporth winch running
One piece of good news was the arrival of the club GliderGuider. This is a fully fledged flight computer and moving map system purchased from the "tea fund" surplus. It will be fitted into the Pirat to allow club members to experience flying with the latest electronic aids and to allow the glider to be used more effectively in competitions, expeditions and cross country flying. Thanks to Ged and Mike Gadd for arranging this.

Mike Gadd shows off the new GliderGuider
The day finished in the warm clubhouse ( thanks to Andrew and Mikes refurbished woodburner chimney ).

Many thanks to all the members who helped today. There are too many to mention individually but you know who you are.

The winches are repaired and the club is back in business with a main and reserve winch. It is amazing how DGS club members pull together in the face of adversity. If a mountain needed moving, I am sure it would happen.


Dartmoor Gliding News–Wednesday 19th March 2014

 Some our more 'senior' members (of whom there are several in attendance every Wednesday) may recall the New Christy Minstrels' 1961 hit song, 'Three Wheels on My Wagon'. Well with a dry airfield, the sun breaking through, John Howe's arrival in his open-topped vintage Standard 8 and a healthy (and early) turnout of members (including enthusiastic one-day course candidate, Angela Bamfield , we started the day in an upbeat mood.  Indeed an appropriate theme tune as we got the kit out might have been 'Two (working!) drums on our Guslaunch'.

John Howe, Standard 8 and K7m
But then it all went downhill.  As the winch was prepared for a busy day, it was discovered that its solenoid was in a burnt-out and visibly-knackered state. It then took the best part of the day for a dedicated team, with a final 'assist' from Ray Best (diesel fitter), who happened to be present working on the ML winch, to succeed in removing the solenoid and starter motor assembly and take it off-site for professional assessment.

So all depended on the ML. Test flights by CFI Don in a K13 last weekend proved that more work needed to be done to ensure full power during the launch, and with Ray and a small band of DGS members wielding the spanners and 'A-team' drivers in the cab, I embarked on a series of further test launches - all of which I had to abandon as soon as I had become established in the main climb. Until this winch can deliver reliable, full-height launches consistently, it must not be used other than in controlled, test flight circumstances, therefore all thoughts of flying today were abandoned, and Ray will return on Saturday hopefully to fine-tune it back to health.

So setting all thoughts of flying today to one side, Steve Lewis escorted Angela to the simulator. Then while some members re-packed the hangar, others were up to their elbows in grease delving in the bowels of our ailing winches.

"Many hands make winch work?" not today but spare parts are on the way
John Bolt reckoned that in 30 years at DGS he had never known a day when we had been totally 'winchless' - which says a lot for our current team of dedicated volunteers who keep the club running - as well as their predecessors. We sincerely hope that through a combination of Fitter Ray's professional skills and hard work by the 'usual few' we'll have at least one winch working this weekend.

The "Black Hand Gang". John and Jorg have been working on the oily bits of the winch. 
But I urge all members to turn up anyway and lend a hand with various essential chores, before the 'usual few' run out of steam and enthusiasm though lack of support.

Onward and upward!

Bob Pirie

Dartmoor Gliding News–Sunday 16th March 2014

Like many other members I have been keenly watching the changeable weather forecasts over the last few days wondering what to expect (not least as I knew I would be quizzed on my knowledge of the F214 and F215 charts available from the Aviation Met Office, as well as NOTAMs).  It was therefore slightly frustrating to see bright sunshine on my way up from Cornwall, and to hear from other members of more bright sunshine on the way down from Torquay, and on the way up on Plymouth, to arrive at the club in heavy mist.  Still this being Dartmoor the weather can change very quickly so the gliders were wheeled out in anticipation.

K13 launching into a low cloudbase
I was indeed quizzed on the weather charts and I think I even managed to persuade Don that I half understood what I was talking about when interpreting the information and abbreviations.  Don even helped me with some of the abbreviations and I now know that BR is officially Mist, otherwise known as Baby Rain, also that GR is officially Hail (5 mm or more in diameter), otherwise known as a Granite Rain.  Thanks Don :)  Of equal use was Dave Parker (and I don't get to write that phrase very often) who showed me how to check the weather charts and NOTAMs on my smart phone, giving me no excuses in future.

Darren gets a briefing
Anyway onto the flying, the cloud base was not increasing so Don saw this as a great opportunity for some practice low-level launch failures with Dave Parker and myself initially bearing the brunt of his enthusiasm.  When the South cable of the Gus launch decided to jam itself up for a couple of hours we knew that this would not be the busiest day of the year.  However Don then had one of his brainwaves - what to do with his new Cloud Flying Endorsement and examiner status?  There was only one answer as young Peter Clifford first found out, followed by the likes of Darren Wills and Roger Appleboom - to fly where no one had flown before on Dartmoor, straight into cloud to practice recovery procedures, which he did very successfully and to everybody's great satisfaction.

Well I'm ready where is Don? Darren thinking about the flight ahead
The Junior section.
In the meantime young Andrew Swann continued his solo flying in the K8 with 3 short, but perfectly executed, circuits, and grandfather Mike continued his own training with Don as well as continuing to pop up and help out whenever somebody was needed.  Michael Larkin was the final beneficiary of some short circuits before the cloud base finally got too low around 3:30 PM.  Luke missed out on some flying yet again so better luck next week and hope to see you at the club nice and early.

Mike Larkin on final approach with Don in the K13
Whilst all this was going on our winch master, Rick, had managed to sneak away on a Sunday to give some valuable winch training to Roger and Dave, who have been successfully signed off on Gus, and myself who will need to get a few more flights under my belt before also being signed off - Darren you are next in line!!!
So from an inauspicious start we actually all agreed that this was a fabulous day's training and thank you Don for your efforts in putting together a slightly unusual and invaluable day

Jerry Wellington

Dartmoor Gliding News – Saturday 15th March2014

Part of the life of a glider pilot is given over to monitoring weather and soaring forecasts and this is no different for me. I had been monitoring the potential forecasts for today since last Wednesday. The atmospheric soundings were strongly suggesting wave. Sharp inversion ( less than 2000 feet above sea level in this case ), wind strength increasing with height but maintaining a constant direction, north westerly in this case.
The atmospheric sounding for 1pm Saturday showing the inversion, increasing windspeed with height, and a fairly constant wind direction. It also suggests very little in the way of cloud cover
North westerly? Surely Dartmoor Gliding only gets wave in easterlies? Only one way to find out; off to the airfield. The sky was full of wave clouds, lenticulars, wave bars, etc. There was a complete absence of the signs thermal activity. That strong inversion and high pressure is responsible for that.

Henry in the K13 with instructor Ged with Stefi in attendance
Henry and Ged about to commit aviation into a dramatic sky
There was a full training programme with junior Henry Flower working towards solo, Stefi Guiu working towards her General Flying test, old hands Jeff Cragg and John Blaskett working towards solo after their winter layoff, Rick Wiles and Mike Jardine working towards an air experience flying rating.

What cloud there was showed an extensive wave system
So, did they find the wave. Well, yes they did. It did not go very high. Less than 2000 feet. Flights of half an hour were common place and the wave bar was aligned with our north ridge so access was easy from a winch launch. Longest flight of the day was by recently solo junior, Andrew Swann, who logged 36 minutes in the K8. He is making a habit of doing this.

The view from the K8 taken by Andrew looking down on the local cloudscape
My only regret was that I had not rigged my own aircraft so that I could have used it’s extra performance to explore the local area properly. Easy to be wise after the event. I should have learned that lesson years ago.

Elsewhere around the airfield the testing of the winches continues. The bad news is that the ML winch is still unacceptably down on power. The diesel fitter with be summoned again. The good news is that the Guslaunch winch brakes are now working and it is back to two drum operation. Some work was being done at the hangar to the roller to make it heavier.

The instructors look cosy at the Mary Tavy Inn.
Missing from the photo was Bob Pirie who was on family duties, Martin Cropper with car troubles
and me behind the camera.
At the end of flying, after the kit was put away, the instructors made a quick exit to the Mary Tavy Inn for their periodic meeting. This went on well into the evening but was not really much hardship in the convivial surroundings. Great choice of venue Don.


Dartmoor Gliding News–Wednesday 12th March 2014

Earlier hopes of wave-producing easterlies were thwarted, and my drive down from north Cornwall was in thick fog and near-freezing temperatures. However, I arrived to find bright sunshine, and was encouraged by the number of members who had made the effort to get there early and get the kit out (and as the day progressed, some privately-owned gliders as well).

Open Cirrus and Astir basking in the sunshine behind G-DDAK
At the airfield, this first spring-like day inspired some opening of trailers, polishing of gliders and fiddling with instruments. Meanwhile every farmer in the west country (except our own Phil the Farmer , who came gliding) seemed to be engaged in spreading a full winter's worth of cow dung across their fields. (Some of the roads got a bit slithery too.) This 'spreadathon' included the top field at Brentor, with the farmer depositing aromatic bi-product less than half a span from the west end launch point, from which we were operating. With the wind varying from zero to 'light airs' from various directions, we found ourselves downwind of the fallout for much of the day - but at least it helped to clear our sinuses.

Farmer at work
After the worst winter mud anyone can recall, we found that the airfield had started to dry out beautifully, which made life on the ground  much more bearable. But now the challenge is to start rolling and filling in the ruts and holes left over by the winter weather and the club's energetic efforts to keep the show on the road year-round. Some of the longer-serving members present today observed that whereas in the old days members all pitched in to help maintain the surface of the airfield and tracks, in 2014 this just doesn't seem to happen - and the results are there for us all to see (and sometimes feel when we land).

Vice Chairman Colin with tractor and roller.
 Phil Hardwick and Colin Boyd seem to be leading the charge to improve matters. As ever, there are plenty of bright ideas from members about what needs to be done - but what these guys need now is actual help from us all actually to get the job done.

The 3 musketeers and a K8.
Wednesday stalwarts John Howe and Steve Raine with Field Treasurer David Rippon in the Glider  
But back to today's report. The weather warmed up beautifully, to the extent that many of us were in shirt-sleeves - although no one went as far as exposing their knees. However with high pressure and an inversion, visibility remained pretty awful the whole time.

One of our Astir syndicates. Phil Hardwick attended by Andrew Beaumont
The combination of our temporary single-cable operation and no thermals or wave meant that we only had one glider in the air at a time, which worked out just fine given the weather conditions. Today we achieved 30 launches.

Today's Air Experience visitor, Bill Reade
Having only a single cable has encouraged us all to strive for greater efficiency in the way we operate, and I believe it is important that we build on this when the ML winch comes back on line, hopefully in the near future.

With the first hint of Spring, members seldom-seen during the winter start to reappear. From an instructor's perspective, today consisted of an encouraging balance of 'returnees', ab initio trainees, solo pilots of club aircraft who have strived all winter to maintain their currency, and private-owners who take the challenge of being really current in their own gliders seriously, and were getting in some launches and stick-time as they prepared for expeditions or competitions at other clubs.

But although those present today focused determinedly on their personal gliding objectives, everyone engaged in flying operations worked very hard and with good humour, and ended the day knackered, but hopefully satisfied with what the day had delivered.

Jeff Cragg back in the saddle 
Highlights? Firstly, Jeff Cragg - having ended last season with a big birthday - getting back in the saddle, with a return to solo flying surely only a few launches away. Secondly, John Howe, after a bit of a layoff, returning to solo status. And finally, Karl Andrews, who soloed the weekend before last, doing some more today in the K13 - and then progressing to the K8.

Karl looks pleased to be in the K8
Bob Pirie

Dartmoor Gliding News – Sunday 9th March 2014

  Sunday was another day where threat and error management revealed that flexibility and patience would be required, and were delivered with an addition dollop of teamwork. 

Threat and Error management at work. The CFI takes a launch in the K8
The ongoing problems with the ML winch inexplicably losing power, despite running to full revs following fit of its reconditioned injector unit, were subject to a threat error test by Don in the K-8, our lightest glider, the outcome of which was emphatic: the power loss was dramatic, approximately 10 seconds into the launch, in spite of full throttle being applied.  Mitigation of the threat was by 'Termination', i.e.. to stop using the ML and fallback onto the Guslaunch as the vehicle of choice for the day.

That was where the teamwork came in as, with only one drum in operation, this meant a pretty constant shuttle for the retrieve driver plus a slick operation at each end of the airfield to ensure that the maximum launch rate was achieved.  It was very fortunate that we had David Jesty on hand to instruct, despite his snowboarding injury, for the flying list consisted of at least three juniors, all keen to get into the air, plus regulars Roger Appleboom, David Parker Colin Boyd and Allan Holland.  And with a wind just east of south and a clear sky beckoning, why not? 

K7M G-DDAK takes another launch
Sadly the much anticipated wave did not materialise, but with both K-13s on hand we did manage to get through the flying list and pack the gliders away with a sense that everyone had made their contribution to making the day a success, so far as was possible and safely practicable.  Let's hope the mechanical genies can work their magic on the ML for Wednesday: there's an Easterly forecast!

Martin Cropper

Dartmoor Gliding News – Saturday 8th March 2014

The forecast gave a sunny mostly blue sky day with a strengthening, gusty south, south east wind. This and the fact that the day started with low cloud and mist kept a lot of the Saturday regulars away.

Stefi polishing a canopy repair. Don looks on 
Undeterred Don Puttock arranged a canopy sanding and polishing workshop with Mike Gadd and Stefi Guiu. They were working on the couple of repairs to the 2 seater canopies. This is starting to show real promise. Well done and thank you.

Visitor Heidi Mayroher gets some family support while waiting to fly
Visitor John Hayward finally managed to fly after several earlier bookings were scuppered by the weather.
Eventually we had enough members to fly and spurred on by the arrival of a couple of visitors, the newly repaired ML winch was positioned at the east end. This did not perform as we had hoped but Don coped well with the somewhat erratic launching and we managed to put together a flying programme to fly the e air experience visitors, David Parker's family visitors and let Stefi Guiu and Mike Jardine to test their skills against the lively approaches.

David Parker's family visitors.

Canadian glider pilot Zak Morgan
Amanda Parker
Mana Longmire
While we were flying the committee held a meeting in the clubhouse but even this could not generate a thermal to increase Don's entertainment.

So, the day turned out well considering the trials and tribulations and ended in traditional fashion in the clubhouse. Ray, the diesel fitter, will be back on Wednesday to adjust the ML winch.