Thursday 29th July

Similar forecast to Wednesday with strong north-westerly wind, cycling very quickly and cloudbase eventually reaching 3000ft QFE. 12 names on the 2-seater list proved a little daunting for the lone instructor first thing, but more instructors turned up during the morning and everyone flew. This must have been the busiest Thursdays for a long time, despite losing some time to a monster winch snarl-up! There was a Trial Lesson, who decided to join on quarterly membership on the spot. Congratulations to Nigel on soloing in the K21.
The Devon Youth Service turned up for an evening of Trial Lessons.

Wednesday 28th July

The forcast for Wednesday was for a sunny day, with a brisk N/W wind - and so it turned out, all the club gliders were in use all day.
The thermals started early at 10am and lasted into the evening, with the cloud base rising steadily and ending up at 3,000ft above site. Three Trial lessons and about 10 members wanting two seater flights kept 7 Instructors busy all day.
Roly and Clive were back-seat training with Mike and JB, John St passed 4,000hrs gliding (17,562 launches).
There were eight private gliders all having long flights, but no-one went far as the flying wind was a little strong 15-20 knots and the sky kept cycling so quickly (about 15mins) that the streets weren't totally reliable. Pete & Jill spent all afternoon in OL trying to read the sky with the expectation of some wave or a sea-breeze convergence.
The Swift Team comprising Swift S-1, Pawnee and a Silence Twister dropped in on their way to Culdrose air display. The Twister departed with smoke and two barrel rolls.

Pete (230) and Matt (477) also had a fun day at Sid's Task week - see National ladder.

Sunday 25th July

A few trial lessons were flown, two new members, with some coming back from last weekend to take advantage of their quartely membership.
Thermals were pretty much non-existent, it seemed as though we were playing with down from the wave all day. The ridge didn't work at times even with 10 kts face on!- it must have been out of phase.
Paul attempted his Silver distance to The Park, twice, however the thermals were avoiding NH and getting away wasn't going to happen. - HF

Friday 23rd July

Third, and final, course day. Waiting for the low cloud to clear lasted most of the morning, but we did get about half a dozen launches in before lunch - the first two being soarable, then it was back to circuits and launch failures, real and simulated.
By mid afternoon the gentle north-easterly breeze had dropped to nothing, restricting launch height considerably but as we were only practising circuits this was not a problem.
The week concluded with several very tired people, but all felt that they had advanced their flying over the three days. Thanks to Dick and Les for keeping the launches coming, to Nick for his ever efficient running of the launch point, and to John, Paul and Pete for keeping the back seats warm.

Thursday 22nd July

Throughout the morning we sat in the Clubhouse watching the rain, eventually the field was awash and covered in 10mm of flowing water. However it did start to brighten the field drained and at 3.00pm we were flying. It was soarable to cloudbase at 2000'QFE, the skyscapes were amazing, white clouds, black clouds, bright blue sky, sunlit fields, columns of torrential rain. Then at about 5.00pm a cloud over Taunton started to grow, making its way into wind towards the airfield. It started engulfing all other clouds around it, and turning black and very ominous looking. At 6.00pm, with two launches to go, it seemed to accelerate towards the field, we made a call to pack up, coincident with the first clap of thunder. Ten minutes later we had the field cleared and everything away, five minutes after that the field was awash again - good call everyone, and we rescued three hours good flying from a very wet day.

Wednesday 21st July

An early very sunny start to Wednesday saw a large flying list, we unloaded the hangar in record time only to be rewarded by a sudden downpour followed by a low cloud base. Flying started at about 11am only to be greeted by another deluge, followed by a quick retreat to the clubhouse for an early lunch.

At 1.00pm everybody was back from lunch to a very thermic afternoon's flying, three Trial Lessons were flown by Ernie. Training flights had to be limited to two each because of the long list, the Juniors were both in the air all afternoon with several flights of over 1hr.

It was nice to see Peter S back after his illness and JB returned from his wanderings,we handed over the two seaters to Chris H for the Trial Lesson evening.
- JS

Tuesday 20th July

The rain and low cloud put paid to any flying today, but the course members were treated to classroom work on various topics including:
Circuit planning
Launch failures
Air Law
How a wing works
to cover most of the theory elements on the training card.

Monday 19th July

First day of the Franco-Welsh course. Early rising campers were greeted with rain and low cloud on the field, but by 0900 it had cleared, the sun was out and it was starting to get hot. A gentle southerly picked up through the day, and high cloud from an incoming front started to intrude from mid afternoon. There were lenticulars all over the sky, but nothing was going up over the site, so it was circuits all day. Much advancement was made through the day with everyone achieving better flying by the end.
We left the field to the Evening Group of 22 Scouts from Taunton just as the first spots of rain splattered the dust on the wings of the K21s, but unfortunately the evening flying was eventually postponed.

Sunday 18th July

Stuart and Lisa flew approx 12 of Lisa's friends on Sunday night using the DG505 and a K21. One particular friend who is terrified of flying stated 3 years ago that he would have a go when Lisa was an instructor and able to take him up. He never expected that to happen so the thought of having to fly so as not to 'welch on a deal' was terrifying for him but I am pleased to say he now wants another flight asap! The visibility was fantastic and everyone thoroughly enjoyed the evening which we rounded off with a BBQ. -LH

Saturday 17th July

After the heavy showers and gusty winds on Wednesday and Thursday, the weather took a while to get sorted until the ridge pushed in properly, a moderate westerly with rapid cycling meant quite a busy launch point for most of the day. By the afternoon, the blackest clouds worked best, and it worked well locally but not many ventured far. Pete(230) did O/R to Eaglescott with some scary moments and a 'balistic climb'(see National ladder comments). At one point 7 gliders landed in the space of 2 minutes (unusual for North Hill when the ridge is working). There were 5 trial lessons and welcome to Jim and James who have joined us on quarterly membership.

Sunday 11th July

The forecasts looked good, and Henry & John had a soaring flight to start off before 10:00am, The launch queue was busy all day with all the club gliders and 8 private gliders, there were 58 winch launches and 9 aerotows, there were 5 visitors for Trial lessons. Pete (230), Daniel (611) and Ron & Phil (711) set off for 300kms Whiddon Down - Salisbury. The high cover and sea-breezes proved to make it difficult and the task was aborted. Pete & Jill (OL) played with the sea-breeze first on the south coast and then on the north coast until the convergence set up over the airfield. Cloudbase got to 4500ft QFE.

Saturday 10th July

A quiet day with only 11 members flying but there were also 3 trial flights.

Friday 9th July

End of Course report

Robin and Stuart's course finished on Friday with satisfied smiles all round. Glorious weather almost all week - just one day lost. All six of the participants made significant strides forward in their flying - Rob R and Geoff L saw tick after tick in the boxes on their training cards, David S was sent solo (having only recently solo'd in a powered plane too),

Ray R, Rowan S and Jonathan S all progressed to Red Cards. Rowan also did his first solo aerotow and solo'd in the K13 (at the same time) as well as completing his 50th solo flight.

Ray and Jonathan managed a 2-hour solo flight each. Big thanks to Robin and Stuart, as ever, and to the ever-industrious ground support crew - Wendy W-F, Dave A, Richard H and and Alan T for organising 155 launches in the four days - totalling almost 38 hours in the air.

News from Long Mynd
Most of us left the Mynd today under low cloud from the slow moving front, to a return journey with cumulus across the sky.

But what a week! - Congrats to all, both at home and away for all the fantastic achivements.

Thursday 8th July

News from Long Mynd
Low cloud bases and considerable top cover and light south westerly wind didn't suggest a particularly good day, but following no flying yesterday, gliders were prepared. Some struggled to get away,without the helpful ridge to assist, but then some thermals were popping off the ridge mixed in with paragliders. Strong thermals kept everyone up until the rain came in, Henry made his first field landing (friendly farmer) and congrats to Jimbob for achieving 50 hrs P1 on his way to Shrewsbury today. Some had been to Shrewsbury earlier to pick up repair kits for the wrecked models -just got back to rig when the rain started.

Wednesday 7th July A week in Paradise

Been in La Motte Du Caire for almost a week now and have flown every day. High pressure is dominating the region with hot sunny days, little or no wind and tricky thermal conditions. Even so, my first flight with Christain Seberger, JaquesNoel's deputy was indescribably EPIC!
From the winch we climbed away in a thermal produced by Early Morning, a hill on the south end of the airfield, jumped to the towering vertical face of Malaup, figure of eighting until we could 'spiral' away off the top. Mountain jumping our way to the east to the dizzy snow covered heights of Tete de l'Estrop at 9800' asl. Eagles, vultures and lots of other gliders sharing the spectacular views. Who would have thought you could have this much fun in a K21.

La Motte has a very friendly atmosphere, with glider pilots from France, Germany, Netherlands and us Pom's enjoying the site. There is a morning briefing at precisely 10:15am
explaining the days weather forecast, given in French and English and starting with Jaques greeting each pilot by name. The instruction is very good and pretty intense, with lots of information to absorb and then to attempt to put into practice, all the while trying to fly
accurately and above all safely, and not scare yourself silly when you get low and your nearest landing (non-stupid) field is completely out of sight. High work-load and distraction (a wall of rock just off your wing tip) take on a whole new meaning!

Jb is enjoying his ever expanding forays into the mountains,
honing his skills and building up his data base of knowledge.

Mountain de Gache

Tete de l'Estrop kicking off 6 knot thermals at 10 000'

Lac de Serre Poncon looking south along the Parcour

Wednesday 7th July

Course week at North Hill
Today has had to be scrubbed - the southerly winds brought low cloud and rain.

News from Long Mynd
Also scrubbed due to low cloud and bands of rain, however, the models were out in force again - with all damage repaired.

Tuesday 6th July

Course week at North Hill
Tuesday dawned with more blue skies and promised much. Tuesday was a day of spin/stall training - I'm not sure that anyone escaped the delights of the K13 pointing vertically downwards!

News from Long Mynd
There was a veil of thick cirrus this morning with a southerly wind, but by mid morning the cumulus started popping underneath. The wind veered round to south westerly and the North Hill fleet was launched. Most flights were between 1 and 2 hours, but all stayed fairly local, rain fell out of the thickening medium cloud but the promised wave didn't really set up until about 6:00pm although even the locals couldn't make contact. 18 hours total flying from 12 flights.

Monday 5th July

Course week at North Hill
Monday dawned with blue skies, promised much and lived up to expectations, with excellent soaring conditions. There were thermals of such strength and abundance that the junior pilots had to fight their way back to earth!! The three pre-solo course members made excellent progress in the capable hands of Stuart and Robin.

News from Long Mynd
The day started blue and the clouds started popping early before 10:00. The wind was westerly with just a touch of north and about 15knots - perfect!
The North Hill fleet was airborne all day with a few crew changes totalling 48 hours from 18 launches. Simon & Mark flew in Mynd DG505 and visited the west coast of Wales, Talgarth and return. Ian (523) went to the coast and around for 5 hours. Pete & Jill (OL) did 192km into mid-Wales and Talgarth. Jimbob converted to Discus, Mike found the tips on the ASW20 to be awesome. Henry has now completed 50 hours P1. Congratulations to Paul for achieving his 5 hours in Mynd's K23.

News from the Alps
Matt's in paradise.

Sunday 4th July

InterClub League at North Hill, a promising start early morning with clear blue skies and warm sun, weather front started rolling in at 0930, but with south westerly wave which soon filled in underneath. Following a report from Nick in the Junior of good climb to 2700 above site, there were 3 competition launches before it went horrid, Joe (JD7)Mendip pundit and Ron & Dan (711), both pundits returned to site and Joe disappeared, and phoned in from Culm Head after 30 mins. As Joe went on task he won the day with 6 points. Final scores from the weekend the Park 41pts, DSGC second with 38pts, Wyvern third with 36pts, Shalborne fourth with 31pts and Mendip 29pts.
Club flying continued. Well done to Andrew for organising ICL with very few helpers due to the detachment up north.

News from Long Mynd
The expected cold front took all day to clear, it looked really nice at 5:00pm, a few ventured off to visit Cosford museum, others worked on the models and then model flying into the evening.

Saturday 3rd July

InterClub League weekend at North Hill, conditions looked good and tasks were set to the east, first launches started at 11:00, Novice NHL-BEA-STU-NHL 136km, Intermediate NHL-SHA-TAU-NHL 162km, Pundit NHL-STU-FRO-NHL 180km
Good effort from Fred (FZF) the only novice to turn 2 TPs winning the novice class. Joe upgraded to Intermediate but despite not reaching the 1st TP didn't come last. pundit Pete (230) got round 2 TPs before landing at Merryfield came 4th. So although only 3 Pundits completed the tasks it was agood scoring day, with Shalborne winning the day, the Park second and North Hill joint third. The day ended with a well- attended barbeque. Thanks to Pete the chair, Lisa and Alan for retrieving,and Ian & Stu for tugging and Tim J for duty launch point marshall.

News from Long Mynd
The early risers arrived in time to get check flights and some soaring, let's hope that Paul's navigation skills for his 50km will be better than following the M5 all the way to Birmingham.
The ICL tasks for Rockpolishers were 100-150km due to the late start.

Wednesday 30th June

All the usual Wednesday crowd turned up we had a nice early start with thermals from the word go in the light S/W wind, the cloud base went to 4,000'QFE and we had a nice sea breeze front to fly in.
There were three two seaters on the go, with Lisa and Ernie flying several Trial Lessons, Matt did his first stint as a tuggie and came down with a big grin on his face (nothing new there). Jeff has flown his Mosquito from North Hill for the first time, much to his enjoyment. Dave got through his bi-ennial flight review with Ian in the Falke, so much better now that he has his new eyes.
A sea breeze arrived in the afternoon and spoilt the thermals a bit but the two K6's and the Oly stayed up.
At 5.30pm a group of scouts from Pinhoe turned up for a Trial Lesson evening.