Sunday, June 30, 2013

Weekend report June 29 - 30

Both days of the weekend were hot and humid - good for training, but not much else.

The best news is that Pete Dodd showed up for his annual visit to Post Mills and Franconia.  He had the only soaring flight of the weekend (today), keeping 3J in the air for about an hour.  Pete will be here for a few weeks, and we are lucky to have him around.

It's always easy to show up on on a good soaring day, but volunteering to help out on a warm, sultry, stable, humid, stagnant weekend takes extra dedication.  Thanks to Andy, Doug, Thomas, Tom, Skip, and Sonny for helping others fly this weekend, without flying themselves.

Franconia is next!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Thank you, CBS News

Thank you CBS News, for publicizing our sport.  We might be insane, but you are definitely morons.

"Check out insane glider plane aerial acrobatics" by Leslie Savage, CBS News

Luca Bertossio is an extremely talented pilot.

Friday, June 28, 2013

The weather is better in Hobbs

Evan sent this image of yesterday's cloudbase forecast for Hobbs, New Mexico (X marks the spot). Red is good (note the scale at the bottom).

It could be better, I guess. We know what color comes after red.

I told him how to spell "Schweizer"

and I never said "air pockets."

But it's a pretty good article in the Sunday Valley News.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Weekend report June 22 - 23

We had a chance for five flying days in a row, but we only got four.

On Saturday, Dennis and Sonny got some lessons and some ground school (yes, Sonny is officially a student again).  Big thanks to Doug for coming up to Post Mills to tow.

We got snookered on Sunday.  The forecast was for marginal VMC with intermittent showers, so we cancelled the day.  In fact it was hazy and hot with low ceilings, but definitely good enough to fly gliders.  Rick, Tim, Creighton (!), and Kassie (prospective member) went power flying instead.

Dan flew the GBSC Puchacz at Sterling.

Other news

In other news, our friend Sarah Arnold is headed to France to represent us at the Women's World Gliding Championships, where she will be flying a Libelle in the Club Class.  You can read about her here and here and on the US Team Twitter feed, after the contest starts (June 29).

I have to admit that I like the official poster of the WWGC.

And Evan is geared up and ready to do battle at the US National 15 Meter Class Championships in Hobbs, New Mexico.  He will be busy flying for the next 12 days, but if he sends any reports or photos, they will be published on this blog.  When that contest starts (June 25), the official daily results will be published here.

Friday, June 21, 2013

We pick up and deliver

Moshe (RU) needed an assist to get home on Thursday.

He's at it again

Greg (JD) flew another 300 km triangle on Wednesday, this one declared.  His turnpoints were Pine Mountain and Springfield.  The last leg was a bit dicey, but his long wings helped to get him home.  He landed at 5:45pm. The flight should get him his Diamond Goal badge leg.

Here are three nice views - click to enlarge (right click for largest*).

Mount Washington from over the Hotel
Mount Washington from over Mount Madison
Boston from over Mount Lafayette
*I don't know what Mac users do.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Private Pilot

After making the drive from Boston and taking a couple of practice flights yesterday, Dan MacMonagle took his flight test with Bill Stinson today, and passed with flying colors. Congratulations, Dan!

Rick and Thomas are happy to get rid of another student, and our whole club is grateful to Bill for being willing to serve as our region's FAA examiner.

After his test, Dan celebrated with a 93 km flight in 3J.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Silver and Gold

Congratulations to Greg Hanlon for completing both his Silver and Gold Badges following his 6.5 hour flight to Berlin NH and back last month.

This qualifies Greg to enter a National Championships.  The next one is conveniently located in Hobbs, New Mexico.  Evan is going. Perhaps they can travel together.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Weekend report June 15 - 16

We had a very good day of flying on Saturday. Cumulus clouds appeared while we still drinking our morning coffee. Eventually they reached 8000 feet MSL.

Skip (JS), Greg (JD), Tim (PM), and Thomas (ZP) headed upwind and found some good climbs in the Knox mountains.  Greg made it to Morrisville and then dashed over toward Franconia.  On the way, he decided to turn for home in order not to miss the party.  Tim did the opposite: he turned short of Morrisville and made it to Franconia, and then home.

In the meantime, the 2-33 got a workout with John and Dennis flying.  Sam and Bob made local flights in the 1-23 totaling about two and a half hours, and Bill flew between the thermals in 3J at the end of the day.

The last landing was after 6pm, so the cookout got off to a slightly late start.  It was well attended and well supplied.  If you're not on this list:
Andy, Andy, Bill, Bob, Greg, John, Judy, Keith, Linda, Mary, Mike, Peter, Petey, Rick, Sam, Sonya, Sue, Thomas, Tim, Zach
you missed a good party.

Sunday was not as good.  We had a high overcast most of the day, and it ended in rain.  Dennis made three flights in the 2-33, after which we propped it up and wrested the main wheel out.  Andy and Dennis replaced the tire and tube and were about to reinstall the wheel when the rains came.  The job will be completed before a mid-week operation scheduled for later this week.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Weekend report June 8 - 9

Saturday was a fairly worthless soaring day, but we accomplished some good training, thanks to the dedication of Dennis and Dan, and to Doug's willingness to drive, tow, stand around, and drive again.  Dan handled his simulated rope break perfectly, and then helped us avoid a real one by discovering a defect in our newest towrope.

On Sunday, the weather was much better but not quite reliable enough for cross-country flying.   Greg (JD), Skip (JS), Bill (PM), and Dan (3J) had local flights, with the duration prize going to Dan.  Bob towed, Thomas instructed, and a small group of would-be mechanics attempted to replace the 2-33 main wheel at the end of the day.  They were foiled this time, but they'll take another shot at it next weekend.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Lone Slacker

Greg (JD) had a nice flight yesterday, 184 km, mostly at comfortable altitudes.  The rest of us were unable to take the day off!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Weekend report June 1 - 2

The weather on Saturday was a little bit strange. An optimistic view of Friday's forecast said that we could expect good conditions as long as the temperature stayed above 90°F, which didn't seem likely at the time.

The airmass turned out to be slightly less stable than predicted, and Mark (3J) was able to stay in the air for over an hour, beginning just after noon.  Steve (PM) and Evan (T8) followed with a couple of flights of over 2 hours.  They both reported variable conditions - 2 to 4 knots at middle altitudes, tapering off to nothing near the clouds.  Steve, by being patient, was able to reach 8500 feet (which was above cloudbase) over  Thetford Hill.

In the meantime, the 2-33 got a good workout, with Andy towing all day.  Bill and Greg flew some rides, John and Rick watched a rain shower barely miss the field, and Dennis (67) made his first OLC flight of the year.  Tim took our newest member, Dakai Zhu, for his first flight lesson.  Welcome, Dakai!

We had about a dozen people at the cookout, and way too much food!  Thanks to all the contributors for another good party.

We lost Sunday for two reasons.  The towplane's left brake line sprung a leak, which grounded it for the day.  The line was eventually replaced by Keith and Andy, just in time for the afternoon thunderstorms.  So we called it a day.