Sunday 31st July

A small but keen group of members arrived at the club on a morning that did not promise much . Simon L was duty dog , he looked less than enthused by the forecast printout (214, 215) . Discussions on which end we should set up continued for 30 mins or so , we set up for SE . No sooner we started to move the kit to the far end John St's wise old nose started to twitch " Wrong end , that's my hunch " of course he was right ! you get a feel for these sort of things when you have seen 84 summers.
Training was underway soon after we re-positioned. The Davis family really dominating the launch point, great to see a family enjoying the sport, they all had real progress, some following the new Bronze cards others being taught new skills on the ground.
Roly and Heather enjoying a rare five min rest

We had several visitors today, Mike S enjoying his new role as B.I flying the DG !! Roly kindly allowing him to fly his aircraft whilst he was in the K13, (I had to blink at least twice to believe my own eyes ! )
J.B took over after lunch and continued with his usual enthusiasm until well after 6pm.
The field was quiet today, a real shame all our trainees did not turn out because at times it was quite rewarding, the usual group of solo pilots were not around to cloud the issue.
DSGC tug of war team practice well into the evening

The Falke arrived back on site in a huge trailer, how nice it looks in its new livery, soon to be flying I hope, Carl was drooling over the engine which he promptly installed.
A very pleasant low key day enjoyed by all. - Mark

Saturday 30th July

A fairly mixed day with troublesome low cloud at times, but still some useful training flights and thanks to Andy for supplying winch training. In the evening, many members visited Exeter Airport to help Lisa and Malcolm celebrate Capital Air Charter 20th Birthday.

Thursday 28th July

The forecast was confused with a collapsing ridge of high pressure overhead, and decaying fronts approaching from both east and west. As it turned out we started with a very humid airmass and a lot of high grey cloud in a gentle north westerly, then around midday cumulus started to form under the high cover, which itself eventually dissipated. In the calm of the morning it was time to convert Heather to the Junior, quickly followed by Aston.
Two 2 seaters and one Junior were flying most of the day, with several half hour flights but nothing much longer. Roly flew a couple of Trial Lessons in the DG.
Once it got soarable a few private gliders came out to play, Pete (Discus 230), Simon (ASW20 SM), Andy (LS8 418), and Eric and Claire (Duo OL), all of who had something over two hours each, and some local tours of east Devon. CFI Pete flew a Skylark 4 for the first time in about thirty years so that he could brief Pete D on his new aquisition - it flies so slowly.
The evening Trial Lesson group from Devon Youth Service were flown by Simon M and Roly, with help on the ground from Heather, Cheryl, Graham and a team from our Junior contingent.
Congratulations to Jonathan who snuck off over the weekend, to Odiham, to successfully complete the flying tests for his Cross Country Endorsement.

Wednesday 27th July

The wind was blowing from all points of the compass at the start, so we set up S/W and for once it was the right call.

All available gliders were in use all day with some good soaring flights logged, Eric & Claire flew Duo Discus OL and later Eric & Al had a flight, Nick H flew his Oly to good effect, Andy flew the LS7.

Dave C had over 30 min solo and had to be called down, Joe D rejoined the club and re-soloed, nice to see him back, all three two-seaters had to be called down at 6pm to make way for the trial lesson evening group run by Stu, Muggles & Roly. - JSt

Sunday 24th July

The good forecast for the day had everyone peering through the curtains early this morning, to be confronted with low cloud and drizzle and the airfield shrouded in mist. And that was how it stayed until around lunchtime, although the morning was usefully spent with a couple of short presentations on - weather.
The afternoon was quite flyable, with plenty of circuit practise. The gentle westerly tried to keep the ridge working, under the low cloud, and the only people to make use of this were Rowan in his Libelle and Simon M in his ASW20. Congratulations to Rhodri for converting to the Junior.

Saturday 23rd July

Forecast was good, sky looked good, and it was 'goodish'. Cloudbase went up during the day - it looked better to the west with a lot of top cover to the east. Pete St Discus 230 and Matt ASW20 M5 took a leisurely launch at lunchtime and completed Whiddon Down - Dulverton 113.5km. Eric and Alastair flew Duo Discus OL South Molton - Yeovil and found conditions a lot better to the east. There were a lot of private gliders out and congratulations to Dylan and Rhodri for their Bronze soaring flights.
The epic seaside trip on the 8th May now has a brilliant writeup in S&G to go with the multitude of videos.

Thursday 21st July

A nice bright day with that annoying northerly crosswind. The two-seater list was long, and was a struggle to get away, but ½ hour was the norm. Robin ASW27 JPT did manage to get into convergences over Tiverton and sea breeze towards the south coast. In the evening, Torbay Round Table enjoyed the fine weather with trial lessons.

Saturday 16th July

The morning was cold, damp and horrible - low cloud, drizzle and scattered heavier showers. But just after lunch persistance paid off, the waiting game was over, the clouds parted and the sun came out. The wind had picked up to a decent westerly and the ridge was working well and kicked off thermals to a reasonable height. Those that sat out the morning were rewarded with a good afternoon's flying.
The conditions continued into the evening to provide a group of motorhome campers from Forest Glade with a session of extended Trial Lesson flights with glorious visibility over the whole of Devon.

Summer course - 11th - 15th July

Wow, how can I explain this last week's amazing experience ...........?

As the date for our course approached, weather forecasts were watched more and more closely but as it drew nearer, forecast uncertainty increased. Many of you will know now that the weather was incredible, providing a mix of conditions that couldn't have been better to challenge us.
Six would be pilots attended with skills ranging from ab initio to lapsed competition pilot. Robin and Stuart began our training in very light winds with little thermal activity. We were able to develop our basic skills by the end of Day 1 with growing initial confidence. Tuesday arrived accompanied by strong North Easterlies of blue flag level. These conditions knocked our confidence, especially with the lightweight K13. We were reassured by the instructors that this experience of frequent short flights had developed our skills and prepared us for Day 3.
True to their words, Wednesday's weather returned to more reasonable conditions and we celebrated Max's solo and Ray's one hour flight towards his bronze. But then came Thursday....... since described as the best North Hill gliding day this year.
We recorded a five hour flight for Ray and over 10 hours soaring for the rest of the trainees! Sadly, Friday arrived and the end of our course. Our total flights for the week amounted to 135 and our total flight time to over 37 hours. Everyone had developed their skills significantly and our two youngest members at ab initio were very near to first solos, whilst my brother and I made significant steps forward. Our star players, Ray and Max, bought the drinks at the Keepers to celebrate their excellent achievements.
Everyone on the course will wish to join me in thanking Robin and Stuart for their superb instruction and, particularly, for arranging the weather. Our thanks also go to Wendy for her support and guidance, Eddie, Alan, Dave who were volunteer helpers, Richard and Nick on holiday at the site who pitched in.

Without this great support, which was really appreciated, we would not have been able to reach such dizzy heights and enjoy our wonderful week of flying. - Rob R.

Saturday 16 July

The day started around 1pm, before this was rain, lots of it. The kit was readied and the few members who did show up were rewarded with hour long flights in the challenging conditions. Mark and Si Leeson went to Tiverton and back in the K13, with a 15 kt headwind, we're not sure how. The climbs were good and the sink even stronger with scattered Cumulus and wave interference. The day finished with a trial lesson evening, with plenty of instructors and helpers the evening went smoothly.

Thursday 14th July

The forecast promised much and it delivered, except for a fickle northerly wind causing a change of ends before starting and then a tail wind all morning before it settled down to a gentle north westerly. Soaring started from the word go with strong plentiful thermals to 3000' QFE, but reached 5500' QFE at the end of the afternoon.
The course had plenty of long flights, including Ray R completing his five hours in the Junior.
The Thursday crowd set off cross country with JB having a good attempt at a 500 km in Ventus (KJW) Unfortunately having to resort to the "iron thermal" about 13km short, Ron and Pete Sm flew the ASH25 (711) 465 km along the southern counties and Daniel completed his 300km Diamond to Candover church and back in ASW20 (611).

Andrew is claiming Silver height with a flight in his Ka6 (GDE). Other private gliders out were Eric LS7 (194), Mike Pik20 (DFK), Peter F Duo (OL) and Lisa ASW20L (LH). CFI Pete, after seven trips in the Pawnee, managed to blag a launch in Lisa's 20 to knock off a quick 120km around east Devon just before tea.
The field was handed over to the evening group to give trial lessons to Pinhoe Scouts who squeezed 23 flights into the very pleasant session. - PH

Wednesday 13th July

A quiet day considering the weather, with only a handfull of the usual Wednesday members turning up but with Robin & Stu running a course it was busy enough.
The thermals were strong and regular with a cloud base of over 4,000ft above site. We handed over to the evening trial lesson crew, with a very excited group of girl scouts. - JS.

Sunday 10th July

There was more cloud than forecast although soarable underneath. The members were outnumbered by visitors - some were away at ICL Mendip (where the tasks were again scrubbed) and others possibly watching the Grand Prix or at Yeovilton.

Saturday 9th July - ICL Mendip

Inter scrub unfortunately lived up to it's name today. After grid squatting under scruffy scrappy cu in a brisk wind while conditions down track looked distinctly gloomy, a scrub was called at 14:30.
True to form, within the hour small cu started to form in front of the ridge, enough to enable some local soaring but it was never easy and the cloudbase rarely went above 1500' justifying the decision to scrub.
Looks like the team should get a better day tomorrow so good luck to them.

Friday and Saturday - Camphill

Friday - Most of the group left after breakfast, Paul went to visit his brother and Graham & Cheryl explored local landslip and lead mine.
Saturday - Ridge was booming!!! Paul and Cheryl both flew duel with local instructors but were unable to solo as had to de-rig and head back to NH - GB

Thursday 7th July

Camphill - The same showery airstream hindered flying for most of the day, although the showers became less frequent in the afternoon, there was not much soaring to speak of. One model was again lost - but found without the help of the 'DSGC Mountain rescue team'. Henry stayed out on the field all evening helping the evening group and flew the local K18 on the ridge.

DSGC Mountain Rescue Team

North Hill - Thursday dawned dry after heavy overnight rain. The campers emerged from their tent a bit damp and bedraggled but still enthusiastic.
A good number or Thursday thermallers turned up and we welcomed two new members, Aston and Michael – we hope to see a lot of them.
Weather was better than forecast and we were able to fly all day in weak thermic conditions with a brisk southerly wind. We handed over to the night shift at 18.00 for a party of scouts. - JSi

Wednesday 6th July

North Hill - All available gliders were out early because a large number of members turned up, all three two seaters were soon soaring in the easy thermals, we had to limit flying to half-hour each to fit everyone before the promised rain arrived in the afternoon.
It was nice to see Liam, one of our junior members, cleared by Les to drive rhe Skylaunch, we welcomed back Dehane as a club member who has been working abroad, the rain and high wind arrived at for an early finish. - JSt

Camphill- Rain greeted the camphillers this morning, but a quick dash to Sheffield and Manchester shopping centres brought the sun out and a race back to site. Meanwhile we set up the launch point for the Puchacz training circuits. The wind was stronger than previous days but at south-south-westerly neither the west or south ridge was working.
After a couple of big thundery showers, the wind changed slightly and the south ridge kicked off some thermals enabling Ian M Kestrel 523 and Mark C ASW20 ENW to get high enough to have reasonable evening soar on the ridge.

Tuesday 5th July

Camphill - The forecast was for rain from the occlusion reaching Camphill by 1300 and the wind increasing southeasterly. In the event there was only a short rain break at 1330 under the medium level cloud. Paul S Cirrus 477 continued circuit and soaring practice and found that the Cirrus didn't like wet wings, and Ian M Kestrel 523 had 2 extended circuits. There were some tours of the Peak district by car, and the model flyers tried out the southerly ridge which was good until they got caught in the curlover and 3 models were lost. Search parties found two of them easily but the third model was more elusive and needed the 'DSGC Mountain rescue team' after dinner for recovery.


On Sunday SM also completed a Salisbury o/r while Ron and Phil in 711 went to Sturminster Newton and then planned to go West but the sea air scuppered that idea!
Everybody had the last real climbs around Yeovil which meant a VERY long glide to North Hill - this link to the satpic for Sunday afternoon shows it well.

Today at Nympsfield Phil M in 611 also completed Wantage o/r.

Monday 4th July

Camphill - A slow start with solid cloud cover in the morning. Light southerly wind picked up at lunchtime when the cloud dissolved into cumulus sky. Visibility was pretty poor and it was a little bit of pot luck to get away. Once above 1500ft it was easy to stay up locally. Paul S Cirrus 477 & Cheryl B4 CVV competed for number of launches / soaring time. Steve W Discus FER and Ian M Kestrel 523 both managed to get away first time, Ian flew for over 4 hours locally. Mark & Simon DG505 JZK set off on their declared cross-country at something below circuit height and landed near Scunthorpe.

Nympsfield - Pete St Discus 230 completed Sid's task O/R to Wantage 121kms.

Sunday 3rd July

North Hill - From the BGA ladder, Matt ASW20 M5 completed 216km out and return to Salisbury, whilst Pete St Discus 230 completed 156km out and return to Shaftesbury - sounds like it was quite tricky with the blue and sea air.

Camphill - Conditions cycled during the day but most managed to get away. Simon L and Mark DG505 JZK and Steve W Discus FER flew out and return to Mansfield. Pete & Jill Duo Discus OL toured Alton Towers, Chatsworth and Mam Tor. Ian M arrived in the evening but had to request a work party as he got the Kestrel trailer stuck round the hairpin.

Saturday 2nd July

North Hill - any reports?
Camphill - The advanced party having flown at Aston Down on Friday continued up the motorway and completed site checks. Cheryl having arrived the day before, soared the B4 for 90 mins.