Thursday, April 30, 2009

Task 3

It was another long task today. 90 miles. My flight started with some frustration since it took four tows to stick in the air. After I got to cloudbase, I realized I would be doing this task all alone. This made my day much more difficult. The climbs today were quite nasty also. They did not seem as organized as yesterday. I made the first turnpoint with relative ease, but getting to the second tested my patience. Crawling low over unfriendly terrain had me on my toes and taking every climb that I could find. I made the second turnpoint just South of Arcadia and headed north only to hit steady sink. After a short glide I had to land in a pasture next to the highway. As I broke the glider down I noticed all the clouds going away and knew I wouldn't have made it much further anyway. So, I made it 56 out of 90 miles and was surprised I made it that far. Sitting in the field waiting for Dale, my driver, was quite peaceful.

Lucas made goal today although it took almost 5 hours. He should do well in this comp because he has been consistant. Way to go man!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Day 5, Task 2. They decided to give us an 86 mile task today with one turnpoint. I launched near the back of the line but had a good tow up to a gaggle. Long story short, I had an AWESOME flight. I made goal and not too far behind the leaders I think. I came in with Jeff Shapiro and Ben Dunn, but I'm not sure which start time they took. I'll have to wait until tommorrow to see the results. I'm glad I had this flight since I was pretty bummed about yesterday's flight. It was great conditions with my averager on some climbs stuck on 900 fpm.

There was a bit of confusion on where exactly goal was and I just landed where I saw other gliders. Turns out the land owner did not appreciate us there and made us hike our gear out about 1/2 mile under one fence and over another gate. At least he didn't call the police?

Here is a clip of some in flight footage I shot while on glide. Looking forward to tommorrow.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Finally Flying!

After three days of too much wind, we were able to call a task and go fly it. Even though the strong east wind tore apart the thermals, many pilots made it into goal. I was not so fortunate. A series of wrong decisions or maybe bad luck forced me to the ground just 13 miles out. This was my worst performance ever in my short competition experience. Oh well, I have learned a bit more now and hopefully will do better tommorrow. Until then...

Monday, April 27, 2009

Dune Goons

It has been blown out here for the last couple of days here at the ridge. Saturday Lucas and I played a round of golf to pass the time. On Sunday the safety committee decided it was also too windy so a group of us went out to the Atlantic to soar an abandoned hotel on the beach. We were launched by 3 or 4 pilots pulling on a rope to hoist us up into the air. This is the first time I have tried this and it was simply amazing. This is what hang gliding is all about. We were able to get maybe 60 feet into the air, pin off of the tow, and then glide over into the lift band next to the hotel soaring as long as we pleased. It was hard not to be selfish as others wanted their turn. The view was great. We are having fun despite the comp weather setbacks.

Here is a short vid of the fun.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Tandem Terror

I found this picture of a tandem flight last summer. It is of me and a very excited/terrified passenger coming in for a landing. She was by far the most difficult passenger I have ever taken up. I had scratches on my chest and arms from her nails clenching so tight and she never stopped screaming. She told me she had never been on an airplane and thought this would be a good way to introduce herself to flying. I don't think she was impressed since she has never returned for lessons. Oh well, flying isn't for everyone.

Well, I am here in Florida now for two weeks of competition. More to come!

Monday, April 20, 2009

This one's for you, Mom.

This post is for my family. It is a short movie showing off my wonderful little boys. Feel free to watch, but it may be boring if you aren't related.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Fly-in 2009

I decided to try and host a fly-in type thing a long time ago, but never was motivated enough. Early in the week I saw that it might be light NE winds on Thursday and made the call. This meant we could launch off of the bandit launch in light cross or calm wind, and be landing slightly up-hill and into the wind. PERFECT!

So Tuesday I started mowing a design in the field beside my house. I was inspired by the guy who does this in Ellenville, NY. Even though my design is far less complicated than his, it took all day. First, I marked it all out with a pole, string, and marker paint. Then I went around on the riding mower. And finally, coming back with the weed-wacker in the small areas.
The weather turned out to be right on, couldn't be better. We had a Spot landing contest in which Mark Fink won. The actual spot was the small ringed circle in the center, marked with a paper plate. This made it a bit confusing on final but that's the fun. Everyone had good landings, well, OK, at least nobody broke anything.

Stocked coolers and hot dogs were waiting for us, and we made a huge bon-fire to get us into the evening. Check out the short video. I Wish I had used the camera more around the fire, but then I guess we could have looked like a bunch of idiots.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Glider needs new home!

I guess it's time we went our separate ways. We don't seem to "hang" out anymore. I've met someone new (T2).

I am selling my Airwave Concept 149. I flew it for a long while but need to sell because it is just sitting around. Great flying glider. The performance is similar to a U2. Asking $800, but I am negotiable. Check out the pics, there is a patch on the left wing. Other than that it is in great shape.

Nice winglets Here is the blemishLeading edge is in great shape. Bag in good shape, new from Gunnison Gliders, heavy duty fabric. Also has a bag to keep the winglets.
Nose cone removed