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24/05/2009

Permalink 16:00:28, by admin Email , 279 words   English (ZA)
Categories: solo, motor falke, circuits & landings, thermaling & soaring

I was the first to arrive at the airfield and over the course of the next hour the members arrived in dribs and drabs. No one, including myself, looked particularly in the mood for flying and this was compounded by a dead looking sky and a warm northerly wind.

Northerly (berg) winds usually signify strong winds higher up and also lots of turbulence created by the various mountains that the wind blows over on its journey inland towards the ocean.

It was decided that we would do training in the Motor Falke and about halfway through the proceedings I opted for a short solo flight to test out the conditions. I used runway 34L and the wind was relatively calm on the ground, but from about 500 feet up it was a very light northerly, but quite turbulent.

I made my way to the northern side of the gliding ridge (a side seldom used) to try out for some lift and found quite a few nice strong bumps. There was however sink between the bumps and the lower I slowly drifted on the ridge the worse the lift got. After about 30 minutes of this (with the engine on idle) I decided to fly around the back of the ridge and back to airfield.

I made a wide berth around the leeward side of the ridge so as to avoid the worst of the sink and turbulence but still found myself being tossed around quite a bit. I experience two particularly strong bursts of turbulence that really unsettled the plane and gave me a bit of a fright. Never-the-less, I headed back for a nice short landing onto 34L. Cost = 112.80ZAR.

17/05/2009

Permalink 14:17:00, by admin Email , 11 words   English (ZA)
Categories: no fly day

WindyNo flying today due to bad weather and lots of wind.

10/05/2009

Permalink 21:15:00, by admin Email , 225 words   English (ZA)
Categories: solo, twin astir, thermaling & soaring, single astir, backseat training

Astir JeansAnother extremely hectic week behind me, but fortunately there was time to head out to the airfield to escape the pressures of normally daily life. Things got off to a late start as some repair/maintenance work first needed to be completed on the winch.

The gliding weather looked to be very marginal and the weather forecast predicted the south-easterly to move though later in the day, so when the Twin managed to stay up for a few minutes I seized the opportunity and jumped into the Single for a winch launch.

Fortunately I found some weak lift and managed to stay up for just over an hour, spending 90% of that time going in circles. It was huge fun and for me the highlight was some close and tight thermalling for about 15 minutes with the club';s Skylark where I managed to hold my own against and plane that was better suited to these weak conditions.

Skylark

Later in the day I made my full backseat flight in the Twin where I did everything from the takeoff to the landing. All went off very well, especially for the flare and hold off during the landing where I was a little worried that things could go wrong. Fortunately the wind was relatively calm so a steep approach was not required.

Another great day with lots of flying at 244.05ZAR.

03/05/2009

Permalink 19:20:00, by admin Email , 108 words   English (ZA)
Categories: circuits & landings, thermaling & soaring, single astir

Day's EndLife as been extremely hectic the last two months on the work front and thus time for this blog has been little. Today there was a very good turn out of members at the club with some good flying in the morning. The lift was very weak but good for 15 to 20 minutes flights.

I was up for 37 minutes in the Single and enjoyed the challenge of working the weak and broken lift. Unfortunately at 1pm there was a bad cable break and after that the cable just kept on breaking, five launches in a row in total; so we decide to pack up for the day. Cost: 93.65ZAR.

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