Saturday 28th July

A very blustery day with some rain showers in the mix as forecast!. The hardy members flew all morning with JP, Glenn and JB. My duty started with a change of flag to Blue and just after JP launched we had gusts of over 30kts, so I called it a day. 
Not quite the wall-to wall early sunshine of late (NHLwebcam)
Most of the Trial lesson visitors flew in the morning but our afternoon gentleman agreed that it was best to wait for the good weather to return.  Ian and James flew the Falke to Yeovilton and back again reporting very windy. 

What is that saying again, ‘its better to stand and look into the sky wishing you were there rather than being in the air wishing you were on the ground!

Thanks to all for their efforts, everyone certainly made the most of it. - Lisa

Thur 26th July

After super-soarable Wednesday, Thursday was forecast to be rather disappointing but still hot. Either the forecast or the holidays meant that there were few Thursday regulars but quite a few visitors at North Hill.

There was the same decision about which end to set up early on, but we went with the southwesterly option, and this proved to be correct.

It was just circuits for the morning, but Andy Davey was the first to soar in the Junior at lunchtime. During the afternoon, the thermals became  quite buoyant but shortlived and most had soaring flights, with the south ridge assisting. 
Perkoz parked for lunch (Mark Courtney)
 Alongside the normal training and  solo flying, we welcomed Shona Fenion from Surrey Hills GC, Josie Baker on holiday from University in Durham  having had some flights at Sutton Bank, and Arthur Hayhoe's Uncle Nigel, as well as the three booked Trial lesson Visitors. 
Flat sky over Devon (Mike Sloggett)
Later in the afternoon John Pursey arrived with some work colleagues to fly into the hot evening. Thanks as always to everyone for helping in the extreme heat. - J&P

Wed 25th July

What a day, all the gliders out and the DI's done early and a great many private gliders being readied, for if the forecast was correct a very busy day in prospect.
Getting the Club fleet ready (John Strett)
The weather didn't disappoint, the thermals started early but with low launches because of lack of wind and and sometimes a slight tailwind, the winch-launched gliders had difficulty contacting the lift, no such problem with the aerotow. 
Rigging private gliders (John Street)
Because of the difficulty of getting away a lot of members decided to take an aerotow and the tug was kept busy all day with ten launches completed, not that tuggie Pete Warren was complaining. All the Trial lesson visitors enjoyed their flights plus some friends and family flights.

Anyone wanting a silver height would have had no difficulty if they had taken a winch launch as the lift went up to 5,000ft in the afternoon with a sea breeze front setting in just to round of the day. - John Street.

Cross-country stories
DD3  Into deepest Cornwall  305Kms Truro - Wellington

Egged on by Nick we blindly followed RASP deep into dragon country and squeaked out south of Dartmoor. Spoke to Exeter on way back who were polite and helpful. - Phil Morrison

Wednesday the 25th July another good day in this amazing spell of weather.
Where shall we go? RASP doesn’t look very encouraging towards the east but West looks Best. Ashburton, Launceston, Truro and even Lands End were discussed.
In the end Pete in 230 chose Launceston, Hembury Hill, Roadford reservoir, North Hill.
JB after a delayed start for lunch chose Roadford, Crewkerne, Northill.

JB in convergence near Chard heading east (John Burrow)

DD3 picked Truro and Phil with Nick set off down the A30 to Truro the flight was reasonably uneventful but the views of the north and south coasts were Spectacular. 
DD3 at Falmouth  (Nick Jones)

The return was a little more problematical as the sea breeze appeared to have closed off the northern route around Dartmoor so south we went.
Several times we started looking at possible fields none of them very appealing! The quarry at Hammerton and then a bit later the quarry at Ashburton saved the day and got us to Exeter racecourse where we had a climb to 4500 called up Exeter and a friendly voice allowed us to cross their airspace and wished us well. 

DD3 at Exeter Racecourse (Nick Jones)
To get over 300k we added a short detour to Wellington and then home to North Hill and a well earned bottle of Otter. - Nick Jones

230  Also into Cornwall 300Kms Launceston - Hembury Hill - Roadford
Forecast blue to the East but with some Cu to the West of North Hill so tasked that way for a change. A bit of blue and a bit of sea air but good enough climbs to compensate. On the last leg the sea air had come up the Exe estuary which meant a long glide from Whiddon Down across the gap. Not brave enough to go any further into Cornwall, well done to the DD3 crew.

CVV  56kms - Cullompton - Tiverton - Culmstock - Wellington
Well done Dave for collecting more local turnpoints

Sun 22nd July

A busy day at the Club today, with a good weather forecast encouraging a number of pre- and post- solo members to fill up the flying list(s) well before 9am.

With Simon Leeson, as Duty Instructor, leading members well, all Club gliders and the winch were ready for launching to start before 10am, with a light North/North West wind seeing the launch point set up in the South East corner of the airfield.

With various other Instructors helping out with two-seater flights and with everyone present working well together to launch and retrieve gliders, the flying list made steady progress during the morning.
K21 on tow over dusty brown Devon fields (Peter Smith)
There were various Trial Lesson visitors and Friends & Family flights completed as the day unfolded and with sufficient members keen to help others to get into the air, flying continued through lunch, which meant that by the end of the day the flying list had been all but completed.

Geoff Lawrence (Pegase HES), John Pursey (Lak HOG), Andrew Logan (ASW15 FMS). Simon Minson (ASW20 SM), Phil Morrison/Stirling Melhuish (Duo Discus DD3) all rigged and flew. 
With Simon Minson on the Club 100 and John Pursey completing 177kms Tiverton, Yeovil, Crediton.

After a morning of high top cover cloud late morning the day started to look more interesting with odd blue thermals and distant cumulus clouds suggesting an afternoon of good soaring.

However as is often the case, whether it was a Club or private glider being flown pilots were either fortunate to find a thermal off the winch launch or unfortunate to find the heavy sink instead - when the Duo Discus (DD3) was heard to start it’s “iron thermal” not long after a winch launch one member was heard to comment ‘well, if they have had to start their engine what hope have I got?’

No surprise that gliders launched behind the Pawnee had much better likelihood of finding the elusive thermals and by late afternoon the sky had returned to that seen during the morning with little help, lift wise, being provided to gliders winch launching.
Packing up after a long hot day (Mike Sloggett)
But overall whilst a long hot day today there were plenty of (tired) smiles and happy faces, thank you to all those who worked away all day in the hot and humid conditions to get others into the air...-Mike Sloggett

Sat 21st July

With the first rain overnight for two weeks at North Hill, it was a little drizzly to start and the members had largely found other things to do. By lunchtime the forecast clearance had arrived and the cloudbase started to rise nicely.  
Pawnee back in action (Mark Courtney)
A big thank you to Ian Mitchell for getting the Pawnee back serviceable with a new Impulse Mag.  So with 8 Instructors and a Tug Pilot present, and the 3 booked Trial lesson visitors hoping for some flights, we set up a limited aerotow operation. with DD3 and ENW joining in the fun. With few members, we were also able to accommodate  two other trial lesson flights. 
ENW at cloudbase (James Hood)
Phil Morrison and Hans Jenssen were first to launch in DD3, with Lisa Humphries  next, getting some solo time in KEK, and reporting back cloudbase rising to more than 2000ft. There was even plenty of sky to get our Mile High flight in. 
Convergence (Stu Procter)
Conditions were quite strong especially when a convergence street set up over the airfield. 
Phil and Stu in DD3 (Stu Procter)
Stu Procter was invited to try out DD3 and Phil and Stu turned Crediton. So it turned out quite nice in the end with 10 aerotows,  and we hope to see some of our visitors returning during their 3 months temporary membership. - J&P

Thur 19th July

Another blue sky morning with a  light northerly wind, but it was fairly leisurely to see if the wind was going to settle at east of north or as forecast west of north, and a few minor fettling jobs were undertaken on the Club fleet. 

Eventually we set up for the north westerly wind but low launches were inevitable. The first few launches were a bit of a lottery on getting away, but then the soaring started in ernest. Every flight from 12:00 onwards was more than 30 mins. 

Thermals were plentiful and strong averaging 5 knots over the local area and to the west, (trickier to the east) cloudbase was initially 4000ft above North Hill reaching 5000ft by the end of the day.
Andy, Rob and John - Congratulations (Jill Harmer)
Congratulations to Rob Rand and John Borland for achieving their Silver heights in LRD and FZF respectively. Rob (flying over lunchtime) also got his 2 hour flight towards Cross-country endorsement. 

Congratulations also to Andy Davey for completing his Cross-Country endorsement field landings in the morning and Nav test in the afternoon with Mark Courtney in Rotax Falke.
Waiting for thermals to start (Jill Harmer)
Well done to Pete Harmer and Chris Wool for managing to soar to a Mile High for their respective Trial lesson visitors from 800ft winch launches, when the Pawnee wouldn't start.

Phil Morrison and Malcolm Vest in DD3 completed the Club 100, Pete Bennett in DG1 went to the reservoirs on Exmoor, and Robert Lee in DKU explored both coasts.  Paul Medlock and Eric Alston also enjoyed local soaring. Chris Wool and Ray Dodd flew Tiverton - Taunton in K21.
Not many occasions when there was a launch queue (David Clements)
We welcomed Jasper Hoopman a Dutch glider pilot to enjoy the delights of Devon soaring and look forward to seeing him back at North Hill.

33 launches in total  with everyone enjoying a soaring flight - What's not to like about this weather? - J&P

Wed 18th July

We unpacked the hangar onto a desert-like airfield with few members in attendance today, we only took the two K21s and a Junior to the north east corner of the airfield.
There appeared to be a low cloud base so John Street & Vince did a quick met flight and found the conditions OK for launching. Peter Warren was the Tuggie for today with three trial lessons visitors booked and members requiring aerotow checks he was going to be kept busy, we delayed the first trial lesson due to the overcast, initially it was quite thermic up to 2,000ft but on the first aerotow the glider nearly beat the tug down.
Andy's first aerotow (John Street)
Andy Davey had his first aerotow in the Junior and Malcolm Vest took a aerotow check flight and then a solo aerotow.
We couldn't fly the two mile high flights due to the limiting cloudbase. - John Street.

Sun 15th July

With a good weather forecast against a background story of badge flights yesterday, it was no surprise that the hangar doors were open, and gliders being pulled out for daily inspections, well before 9:00am today. A number of private gliders were either rigged or being rigged and there was much discussion as to what might be achieved by private and Club gliders.  The launch point was soon being set up in the North East corner of the airfield and first flight of the day was in the air just before 10:00am.

And with some fluffy clouds steadily appearing as the morning unfolded, alongside the Club gliders being launched there was a steady queue of private gliders getting airborne whether by winch or aerotow. Despite the optimism for some potential badge flights for Club members during the day, as ever the dreams were replaced by the reality of not being in the right place of the sky or not launching at the right time.
North Hill (Mike Sloggett)
Various instructors worked their way through the Club flying list which was completed late afternoon concurrently with the sky going blue and with evident cooler sea air generally driving the thermals away to the North of the airfield, out of reach from a winch launch.

And with a scheduled NOTAM for a royal flight transitting from Highgrove House down to Cornwall to the West of the airfield and with everyone having flown it was decided to stop flying early evening.  54 launches in total - Mike Sloggett

Cross-country stories

DD3 & 711
With probably the best weekend weather for cross country soaring, domestic jokers had to be played and a second day blagged to go flying.
Hot on the heels of Saturday's team outing to the Lasham area, the RASP forecast had people excitedly looking at routes in the club house which made the most of the promised good run out to the west late morning.
Phil M with typical nonchalance chose Holsworthy as the westerly end of a 500km with Lasham and Wroughton as the other two points. I say nonchalance because Pete S with much teeth sucking claimed it was too close to the sea, one of the cardinal no-nos (except in Enterprise) for serious X/C pundits. As it happens it was just ok since it sat in sea air but with this summer's great cloud bases a dart out and back was no real risk. Ron J ever the romantic for Cornish air, took on Phil's task and DD3 and 711 turned the Cornwall TP in rapid succession after reasonable runs down through Devon. Meanwhile train spotters JB and Pete turned Crediton station and started blasting off to their next station at Mottisfont on Pete's no-sea-just-trains 300k task.

The trip back towards NHL started what were some of the day's best conditions with super fast blasts twixt 6 kt thermals. Things changed beyond Salisbury with the air drying out and going blue. The spotters were lucky with their choice of TP and were able to blast back to the clouds while the ASH and Duo started to tiptoe. In the storming run up the smaller Duo wings really helped stretch out a lead but in the blue the mighty Albatross with it's seasoned skipper floated ahead and the LAS TP was turned line astern. Ron and Dan picked a good line leaving Lasham and went for clouds on the horizon. DD3 went on track and was soon in that out of phase with the lift feeling and much  grovelling was required.
Southampton Water (John Pursey)
 As an aside, in the bad air soon encountered I realised that Phil really did have no sense of smell and thought perhaps he would like to fly with me in the Eagle instead of JB with his sensitive nose and stomach...

On the radio the 300kers could be heard getting a fast convergence run home while the semi blue conditions towards Wroughton seemed a long way from home. The TP was probably in sea air  coming up from Bristol channel but by staying high contact was made with better clouds towards
Salisbury plain. Closer to home it was clear there was some kind of convergence working but I certainly didn't make the best of it and another slow but steady grovel was required before the triumphant final glide at 120kts as conditions over The Blackdowns boomed us back up. The ASH was already in its pyjamas when we landed (but only just) but importantly the pints of Otter were poured and on their way over in the trusty Discovery. 
Beer, nuts, olives (John Pursey)
 Beer, nuts , olives, good company and 500k  83kph- who could want for more with their joker?! - John Pursey

 Pete Bennett seems to be getting used to the DG100 with a swift 146kms round Cadbury Cross, Chard and Knowstone at 75kph - "landed early for the football" .....

JB & 230
Pete Startup's train spotters task. 300kms Crediton Station -  Mottisfont Station, I hadn't done this one before and when it was all blue as I approached Mottisfont and quite close to Southampton water I began to think I wouldn't do it again, but there were good blue thermals and it turned out to be an easy day. Probably should have done the 500 task! - JB

Pete and Jill took the last aerotow and headed off following the energy west turning Gillingham and Glastonbury, A fast encroaching sea air from the south sent me north into the area that I am not too keen on (Somerset). I now know why. Reasonable looking Cu, no lift. Convergences that were difficult to read, but after a bit of a struggle we escaped back to better conditions. 
Okehampton (Mark Courtney)

Mark Courtney flew his glider! and went west turning Okehampton, before returning to North Hill and climbing in the Pawnee.

Sat 14th July

The potential of a nice thermic day encouraged a good number of pilots to come to the club today.
The Team of Martin Woolner instructing in the morning, James Flory in the afternoon with Pete Bennett flying the Trial Lesson visitors,  got stuck into the flying list and soon the thermals started to work. 
Tom Sides completes 300kms (Rowan Smith)
Both Juniors were also used throughout the day with David Wojnar and Ellie Carter achieving their Silver Heights. Will Stainer managed his 2 hour flight  for Cross-country endorsement. Martin Bennett converted to DG100, DG1 before Tom Sides took DG1 to Lasham and back to complete his first 300kms flight for Gold Distance and Diamond Goal in 6hours 20, a busy day for the glider! Congratulations to all. 
Ellie Carter achieves Silver Height (Neil Carter)
A few other gliders made the 300km trip to Lasham and back: HOG (John Pursey), DD3 (JB and Nick Jones) and 230 (Pete Startup). 
Martin Bennett converts to DG100 (Pete Bennett)
Pete and Jill in OL did their own thing (as usual setting off later than the others) and following the energy up over Exmoor and then trying to make sense of the many convergences over the peninsular from both coasts and also on a north-south line. 

Tim Linee brought his Nimbus 2 over from Dorset GC to enjoy the Devon soaring.

Club flying stopped around 5pm, but it was nice to see a large number of members staying till the end of the day and enjoying the evening outside the Clubhouse. 

All in all, a very successful day for the club with lots of badge claims and achievements. 31 winch launches, 14 aerotows, 11 Private gliders flying alongside the club fleet with nearly all the flights soaring. - Pete Bennett

Thur 12th July

It was a bit of a slow start as most members had driven through some rain to get to North Hill this morning. But looking at the forecast rainfall, the Met Office were confident that North Hill would stay dry all day.It was hoped that the light and variable wind would allow us to fly from the east end, but the wind picked up to a steady 5knots easterly and so the gliders were all walked down the field.
North Hill airfield from the east.....(Mike Sloggett)

With fairly dark clouds all around the local area, but only medium and high level clouds at the airfield, the air seemed very still, and nothing to extend the winch circuits or even the aerotows. It was a good day for training - 40 flights in all.
.....and from the west (Mike Sloggett)
Well done to Andy Davey who was checked out and flew solo aerotow. Well done also to Chris Mew who got the final signature on his cross-country endorsement having completed his 2hour flight last week.
Launch point (Mark Courtney)
Highlight of the day was when Freeda the new Freelander came out  to join the ground vehicles on glider retrieves. 
Freeda the Freelander (Jill Harmer)
As forecast at 15:00hrs exactly the wind swung round to SSW and a swift change of ends ensued.
Lisa Humphries flying the evening group (Mark Courtney)
In the evening, a group from the local pony club turned up for a very enjoyable 24 glider  flights and social evening. - J&P

Wed 11 July

Another sunny start to the day with a promise of some soaring, the kit was walked up to the N/W corner along with the tug with Peter Field as tuggie for the day.
Getting ready with a promising sky (John Street)
The temperature was cooler than the last few days and it was more comfortable on the ground, the first few launches had difficulty contacting  the lift partly due to the lack of wind and low launch height.
Tim Petty in his new toy (John Street)
Pete Startup 230, Dave Clements CVV and Wyn Davies W7 rigged their gliders and managed to stay up, the soaring then became good with thermals reaching 4,000ft. Pete and Wyn headed off to the east.....
"We set off earlyish from a winch launch and found good run to SHB and return to CLS. The way back to MBU was fine until I could see that the turn point was behind the sea air. At one time I was flying with sea air "tendrils" on either side of me - which was a first. That was short lived, as I then had to rush inland and scrabble about YEO reservoir , with 230 , and eventually was shown a great thermal by Pete in 230, over Yeovil. Once back at height the return to NH was straight forward." W7

Sea air tendrils (Wyn Davies)
 Around 12:00 we changed ends as the wind had backed to a light Westerly. Tim Petty converted to Pilatus B4.
The aerotow launch point (John Street)
The three Trial Lessons Visitors enjoyed their flights  and there were also two friends and family flights alongside training, in the afternoon the sky overdeveloped and put paid to the soaring.- John Street.

Tue 10th July

What a lovely evening for trial lesson flying! 9 Air Cadets who had 2 flights each and in addition their leaders. Terry Knight was with them and it was lovely to see him again. 
Flying into the setting sun (Lisa Humphries)
There was a little bit of lift in places, enough to let the students have some stick time and then a gentle float down to earth. 
North Hill Sunset (Lisa Humphries)
Many thanks to Stirling, James, Andrew and James for the help on the ground, all in all a splendid well organised evening for Paul, James and myself! - Lisa Humphries

Sun 8th July

Another scorching thermic day for gliding. Although temperatures were well past the 20’s by 09:00am it was apparent there were very few members that had turned up to fly and help on the ground. With the wind virtually non existent and after scrutinising the forecast the launch point was set up in the far south west corner.

A surprising visit was made by a Robinson R44 helicopter, who proceeded to hover taxi to outside the clubhouse, allegedly wanting fuel thinking he had landed at Dunkeswell. 

Unexpected visitor R44 (Graham Barden)
Flying started at around 10:30, cumulus cloud was already spotted this early providing good, lift. With tempting soaring conditions a handful of private gliders rigged and were soon flying off to complete their individual tasks. Instructor Glenn Turpin and student Mark Worsfold had a great flight early on soaring for 50mins with beaming smiles back on the ground. Meanwhile instructor Peter Field worked his way through the list. 
K21 ready to go (Will Stainer)

The  temperature rose to a staggering 28.6 degC. Guy Adams put student Will Stainer through his paces on some aerotow training eventually signing him off solo, along with some local cross-country, flying to Tiverton and then abeam Chard and back. Paul Summers flew a whole family of Trial Lesson visitors in the DG505 giving them all an enjoyable first flight with great visibility and a remarkable 5,000ft cloud base. Chris Wool took Ellie Carter for a fantastic 73 minute bronze flight in the Perkoz.
Exe Estuary (Rowan Smith)
Rowan Smith in CLM completed the Club 100, Pete and Jill in OL completed 298Kms to Eyres Field, the Park, Eyres Field and Mudford.
Pete and Jill - Visiting the seaside (Jill Harmer)

Around 4:30pm, the sea air off to the south that had been threatening all day finally invaded  overhead North Hill, making getting up to the superb convergence quite difficult. Suddenly a mass of gliders all returned to be on downwind within 5 mins of each other. With kit packed away Chris Warnes in the Junior was one of the last to land around 5:45pm.

Congratulations to James Flory and Chris Warnes who got their Silver heights in FZF and LRD respectively.

A great day for some local soaring, 38 flights total,  with blisteringly hot temperatures experienced by all. Many thanks to all who helped to make it a great day. - Will Stainer

Nympsfield - Sids Task Week round up.

I thought I'd just give a brief(?) rundown of what we got up to last week.

Firstly it was very hot, the first half of the week with blue and windy conditions, the second was still signifcantly blue but with some very welcome Cu in patches and most importantly the wind had died down to almost zero.
230 and W7 on the grid at Nympsfield (Wyn Davies)
Day 1 Sat 30th June - NYM-BAN-NYM 146km - upwind/downwind task due to the wind strength and solidly blue. There's something strangely addictive about heading off into the blue once you know there are thermals there somewhere, you just keep going until you hit one - it'll be fine! Pete 230 was second for the day but Wyn found it difficult into the wind. It was a slow day with task speeds around the 60kph mark.

Day 2  Sun 1st July - scrubbed so we went to a model flying show which was very entertaining and included a surprise display by the BoB Memorial Flight Lancaster en route between some other displays.

Day 3 Mon 2nd July - NYM-MOR-BAN-WCB-NYM 160km - more of the same hence the similar tasking. Again hard going into wind and slow achieved x-c speeds. Pete 230 and Steve(LT from Nym) got a bit low(less than 1000') over the middle of Banbury but eventually found a climb and got round with 230 3rd for the day. Wyn was going well but missed the climb he needed to get home and landed in a great field near Broadway for an easy retrieve. In the evening we met some of the Comp Ent guys in a pub to hear of their exploits.

Day 4 Tues 3rd July - no official task set as it was very windy today, 25kts+. Comp Ent had already scrubbed before we briefed. If you decided to fly however, you could claim anything you did as undeclared by BGA ladder rules and it would count towards the task week results. The only person to fly was Nympsfields Graham Morris who achieved a very creditable and blustery flight of  180km to win the day.

Day 5 Wed 4th July -  NYM-BID-GRM-NYM 134 km - today Nympsfield was right on the very edge of the front which gave you all a lovely soaking in Devon last week so the soaring conditions weren't great locally. Pete and Wyn decided to tiptoe off towards Cheltenham which had some sun on the ground to the North. Once we got to the sun it was actually ok(but blue again), so we went round Bidford to Great Malvern. From there we could see that conditions back towards Nympsfield had deteriorated with heavy cloud and reports of drizzle. We managed to climb high enough over the Malverns to glide back to Nympsfield through the murk and drizzle - you couldn't actually see the airfield until you were almost on top of it! We were the only 2 who attempted the task today so it was great to complete the task with 230 just pipping W7 although Wyn was in front showing me the way. Some of the Nympsfield stalwarts were surprised we got round.
Difficult conditions(Wyn Davies)
Day 6 Thurs 5th July - NYM-GRM-GRW-DID-NYM 357km - Yippee, very little wind and some Cu! Lovely conditions for the run up to GRM with strong climbs and high cloudbase. On the second leg to Grafham Water the clouds thinned out and we were back to flying in the blue but it was very good blue. On the third leg to Didcot some Cu appeared but it wasn't really on track. A glider pilots natural instinct is to go with the clouds but that meant going under airspace with a lower base. This actually slowed you down because it required more climbs and what slows you down the most? - time spent going round and round, so pervesely the guys that stayed on track and in the blue did better and the Cu we slavishly followed off track didn't last for long anyway! Everybody got round the task, 230 achieving 82kph and 2nd for the day with W7 not far behind at 79kph.

Day 7 Fri 6th July - NYM-STU-BAS-BAD-NYM 293km - Again no wind and plenty of Cu. Down to STUurminster Newton only to find it in sea air so climb high, in, round and out back to the clouds - phew. Then the most fantastic conditions around the task until heading back to Nympsfield. A plethora of temporary airspace issues today so BADminton was put in as a control point to keep us clear of it. Unfortunately sea air was well and truly in from the Bristol Channel late in the day which meant a long glide from Lyneham, around BAD back to Nympsfield, a distance of around 40km in lifeless air. Pete 230 just squeezed round to finish 2nd for the day at 79kph. Wyn W7 set off later and was just beaten by the sea air and landed at Hullavington(where Pete went solo in R37, the K13 we've just sold!), for another easy retrieve. Several others didn't beat the sea air either. We didn't quite make the Comp Ent party as planned but did find a great fish and chip shop!
W7 at Hullavington (Wyn Davies)
Day 8 Sat 7th July - NYM-LAS-BIC-HUN-NYM - 310km. Difficult to get away from Nympsfield today as the thermals started quite late and the were no clouds until you were some way down the first leg but otherwise a fairly straightforward day with good conditions with some quite large blue areas especially to the West for the run home to Nympsfield. 230 in second place at 76 kph and Wyn a very close 3rd at 75kph.
W7 in another field on Sunday near Frome (Wyn Davies)
So a great week of flying with variable conditions going from the windy blue and difficult conditions at the begining of the week to some of the most amazing conditions I've experienced in the UK - 5,6,7 knot thermals to 7000'asl in the very best bits. The unusual weather pattern has meant late starts on most days wiating for the thermals to pop and saw people setting off on big tasks at 15:00! The late starts also meant that any landout retrieves were relatively late but when the weather's like that, who cares? And no muddy fields! and a well done from Pete on Wyn's field selections!
Congratulations Pete Startup - Winner of Sid's Task Week
Pete in 230 won the Nympsfield Task Week trophy with a total of 10657 points and Wyn came in 5th with 9738 points so a successful week out for the North Hill pair. Let's hope the season continues like this. - Pete Startup

Sat 7th July - Comp Ent

Saturday 7th was the final day of the comp and the scorers wanted everyone back early. So the task was a number of turning points to the north east and south east of Aston Down. Scores were awarded 1point / Km for distance to each completed TP and each TP earned a 10 point bonus - but you could only claim the bonus points once per TP. The overriding clause was that you only had three hrs from starting the task to end of scoring.

We launched and the thermals were very scrappy and we had a job to climb above 2000 ft! We headed south and after a monumental struggle we turned Tetbury, Calne W and headed SE for Pewsey. As we went further south the thermals got stronger and we turned Pewsey with 4000 ft and headed for Rivar Hill and Newbury S. We calculated that we would get back to Pewsey from Newbury S within the three hours which would give us a respectable distance and 50 bonus points.

We arrived back at Pewsey at 4000 ft with about 19 minutes to spare and I handed over to Malcolm to fly us home. After we had been gliding for about 5 minutes without turning I noticed that the Oudie was saying we were 200 ft over glide and 14km from Calne W, and Malcolm confirmed that we still had 14 minutes of scoring. If we could average more than 60kph and conserve enough height to find a field when we arrived we were in with a chance!

We selected Calne W and set off. It was a race against the clock but we were smoking along at a blistering 45 kts and milking every bit of energy along the way! With 8km to go we were 800 ft over glide and had 8.5 minutes remaining! We needed a margin of height as we didn’t really want to land at the TP as it was in the town! 3km, 3.5 minutes and 1000ft over glide - now we're cooking!

We spotted a suitable field on the way in to the finish that we could reach with about 500 ft and put the speed on to make really sure we got there within the time. Just as the Oudie said we’d arrived, with five hundred ft and one minute to spare we hit a 4 kt thermal and climbed away! We haven’t laughed as much in years! Malcolm was convinced the old Eagle was keen to get to Calne  because she could smell the Harris’ bacon factory!

The scoring distance was about 160 km and with our handicap of 68 we were 15th for the Day and 17th out of 38 overall for the week.

A huge THANK YOU to Nick, Stirling and Steph for retrieving us from so many fields.
Eagle Trophies (Nick Jones)

The John Cadman Trophy for the most outstanding flight of the competition - JP & JB to Weymouth, over the sea and back to Mere.
Blunt Nails Trophy for best overall performance of a ‘old’ glider throughout the comp, and Jura Whisky because like the old Eagle, it’s the best! - JB

Sat 7th July

Same old, Same old - Hot and Blue waiting for the thermals to start, but there were nice clouds today.
Not many members though, must have been the footie this afternoon, or are we all wilting in the heat?

Andrew Logan FMS was the first one to get away from the winch at 12:30,  with clouds to the north and gradually they started popping over the airfield, and the launchpoint emptied.

Cloudbase rose to over 5000ft, and multiple convergences set up all over Devon. It was actually much more pleasant underneath the clouds.

Jill & Pete  in OL followed the lines of energy turning Lapford, Crewkerne and Mudford for 187kms.
North Hill very brown now (Jill Harmer)

Barbie Fairclough in DFK enjoyed a lovely late evening soiree. Total of 20 winch launches and 10 aerotows for the non-footie people. - J&P

July Course Summary

The weather was very good, with flying possible in blazing sunshine on four of the five days – Wednesday being the only day that the course was rained off.  However, the latter poor weather enabled course members to catch up on some theory with a series of briefings from Stuart and Martin.

July Course (Stuart Procter)

A short resume of our week:


A lovely, clear sunny day, but the wind developed into a strong 16kt easterly, with gusts of up to 28kts. Some soaring was possible, but mostly training circuits.


 Another lovely, sunny day.The wind was initially a strong 12kt easterly, but gradually backed and settled into a 15kt southerly. Mostly dual training flights, but the two more experienced course members did get some flights in the Junior.


This was a right off as far as flying was concerned, but the course members caught up on theory with briefing sessions.


The wind was light and variable, but with a slight easterly component, so launching was from the western end of the field. Dual circuit training includingsome extended flights, and aerotow checks (the club had the tug out) for David and Lukasz. The air became buoyant in the afternoon, so that everyone enjoyed some soaring. The field was incredibly busy, and we must thank Jill for her work in the LPV, which kept the field running smoothly.
In the evening the Course members, Instructors and helpers enjoyed a course dinner, arranged by Stuart, at the Otter Inn, Awliscombe: lovely pub with delicious food.


The wind was again light and variable, but with a very slight westerly bias, so launching was from the eastern end of the field all day. Excellent soaring conditions all afternoon, and everyone had extended flights.

Course Achievements

David Herbert and Lukasz Kieruczenko:  both had their Bronze Paperwork signed up, and that is now winging its way to the BGA: Congratulations to both on this achievement.  Both Dave and Lukasz were also checked out solo on aerotow on Thursday during club flying. ( Aerotows are not included in the price of the course, and this was done at their own wish and expense, to extend their skills.)
Dave and Lukasz, congratulated by Martin and Stuart (Stu Procter)
 Mike Pearce and Trevor Johnson: both progressed incredibly quickly, so that by the end of the week they were able to fly the whole circuit without input from the instructor.
Mike Rigby: our reserve who joined the course on Wednesday also made excellent progress, and had his longest flight in a glider – one hour’s soaring on Friday.
Well done also to Wendy Willis-Fleming: re-soloed on Friday.

A huge “thankyou” to all who made this course possible: the instructors, Stuart and Martin, who worked so hard to keep us “cool and calm” in the blazing heat, and equally to our wonderful helpers – Hans, Andy, Robert, William and Tim. - Wendy Willis-Fleming

Fri 6th July - Comp Ent

Day 5 ‘To The Seaside’ - The task set was a string of turnpoints running north west and south east of Aston Down. Pilots could use a maximum of 5 turnpoints before returning to Aston Down.

In DG1, I opted to fly to the North West into Wales, picking up the bonus points for doing so and avoiding all the nasty looking airspace to the South East. I then flew North to the Mynd and back to Nympsfield where I had to land due to Aston Down being cut off from the sea air for a total of 270km. It was nice to bump into 230 Pete at Nymps! 
DG1 (Pete Bennett)
Ron flew a similar task into Wales but was able to get back to Aston Down due to the 60:1 glide angle of the ASH.

Team Eagle and DD3 opted to go East and carefully plotted their paths trough the airspace, with the Eagle notably managing 250k’s!

Nick in JDD decided to have a rest day to recover from the excitement and lack of sleep after yesterday’s adventures.

In the evening, we all enjoyed the enterprise party.  - Pete Bennett

Positions for the day:
5th - Pete DG1
7th - Phil DD3
9th - JB BBB
20th - Ron 711