Author Topic: Viv's Blog 2016  (Read 4361 times)

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #21 on: August 12, 2016, 17:34:17 PM »
30th July. Rhossili. A bit top end for me, with several hang-gliders waiting to launch, I get off quickly while I can and have at least 2 hours covering the whole site, making passes to land from all directions and finally landing nicely on the pimple. A nice pint in the Railway on the way home.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #20 on: July 24, 2016, 13:02:46 PM »
23rd July. Rhosili. An afternoon on the Club tandem is required in order for NickR to remain current, so I leave the Gin in the bag and lug parts of the kit to the pimple, where PaulW is packing up the students for the day. With two anchors we are up and away promptly, and I urge Nick to land frequently to get his logged flights up, but he is reluctant to stop the fun until he sees Ben's family turn up for some. 20 mins later we land nicely with only a teeny drag, SteveB helps contain the wing, Nick flies assiduously until the wind drops and avoids a beach landing for the wing, happy grins all round for the passengers.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2016, 08:52:40 AM by Viv Birchgrove »
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #19 on: July 07, 2016, 11:23:27 AM »
6th July. Nant y Moel. Gate open and the site is a sea of colour, gliders from school and the Services, we set up by the Steve Allen memorial area and join the parade. 1st flight to test the air which is light and I land after 2 beats to avoid slope landing. 2nd time the socks have swung round from the south and I get across the gully to the bowl and back. 3rd go I reach almost to the mast end and gain nice height before heading back to the triangular wood, seeing gliders all around helps me to plot my course. 4th flight I notice a brake line wrapped around the C line which is on the same riser, and sort it without mishap, then after several beats across the whole ridge gaining good height at times I push out down the side of the wood into the valley. But I am not high enough to withstand the pull of gravity in a lull, and come to rest in a green rock-free area which is thigh-deep in long grass with boggy ruts beneath, no wonder the sheep avoid it. I am only in the first field below the wall, so not such a hike back as for some, and I enjoy the walk. The sky is overcast now with not enough blue to make a pair of sailors trousers, but JohnW produces two pairs of jeans that he is sure will fit me. Good to see a lot of people I know, looking forward to the Club BBQ. A good hour airtime spread over the afternoon, and so to work.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #18 on: July 04, 2016, 12:43:58 PM »
3rd July. Fan G. Active clouds on arrival, NickR and I set up round the southside, PeterL bobs round from the trig point and lands just as the sock turns round. I inflate and hold for a bit, then the tug takes me up quickly and I soar back and fore in the liftband, gaining height and turning in any lift, Pete launches and climbs nicely til he is but a speck receding towards the horizon. There are good updraughts followed by a lull as the air is displaced, and I sink and land successfully back at launch after 20 mins for a tandem with Nick. We have 2 short flights for about 25 mins, pause for tea, and conclude that it has overdeveloped, too strong to launch solo, and retire to the AB where Pete gets dropped off from his XC. Nick spots a contrail from a plane doing a loop for the Swansea Air Show, 40 miles away.
« Last Edit: July 04, 2016, 19:03:55 PM by Viv Birchgrove »
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #17 on: June 23, 2016, 20:44:18 PM »
23rd June. Fan G. Launch after 1300hrs, the hottest part of the day methinks, bound to stay up being so lightweight, but again I misjudge the wind strength and as it is off to the south I venture too far round towards the bowl on the second beat and cannot fight the sink coming back into wind. I edge towards the road hoping for a low save by the bowl, avoiding the boulders scattered around, and land successfully without mishap in a nice green area which is green because it is so boggy, lots of runoff from the hill into streams. The lightweight kit comes in at 12kgs, and I trot round the base of the hill to the car comfortably. Fly'n'hike indeed. Nasher arrives and flies down, as does NickR, while I drive down and we console ourselves with a pint on the way home. 10 mins.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2016, 19:53:41 PM »
18th June. Seven Sisters. Despite all signs to the contrary Nick persuades me to give it a go, so we meet with SteveJ and later, DaveS. Very light wind off the hill, but the boys waste no time in testing the air, I follow and plop out of the liftband on my second beat, landing on the stone sill by the side of the track. 5 mins.I fill my sack with firewood while I wait for them to decide it's game over for today. I had thought the new wing would mean more airtime, but conditions are not right this week.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2016, 12:34:18 PM »
7th June. Rhossili.  A light wind day with a small window mid afternoon, liftshare with NickR to see 6 up as we approach, so we launch promptly to enjoy the wide lift band with the tide out there is plenty of albedo to glide around smoothly in. I run up and down the ridge, dunes, cliffs and beach, (often higher than Nick!) until orographic clouds start to form along the ridge, staying out of it and watching the movement of the air, decide to land when it gets quite thick and spreads towards the pimple. The air is so buoyant that I make several passes, Nick advises the speedbar/bigears combination as I still have loads of height to lose, speedbar on but I hesitate over my outer A's as the new wing has split risers, as well as the stabilos being the same colour. The few seconds it takes for me to decide correctly cost me the distance between a safe glide onto the pimple or a flop over the back, I steer away from the walls and wire to land safely behind the cloud. Nick comes to help gather lines and pack up in the increasing wind, and by the time we get back to the pimple the orograhic has dispersed, but still too windy to relaunch, one guy bounced around several times before deciding to wait for a lull. 1hr 45 min. I am delighted with the wings performance, the first time I have had to use ears and bar. Nice to get some decent airtime in.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #14 on: June 06, 2016, 21:50:34 PM »
5th June. Pandy. Arrive lunchtime to find the site heaving with pilots, nice to catch up with some not seen for awhile. Wind light so a queue to launch, eventually I get off and manage a few beats, avoiding the trees where two had landed, and missing my thermal bubbles as my vario was flat. I drift out and miss the landing field, putting down in the adjacent plot which had no crops. A lift back up and loll around for a bit, then a final top to bottom as the sun starts to lower. Nice landing in correct place this time, then off to the pub.40 mins.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #13 on: May 27, 2016, 21:21:11 PM »
26th May. Tal y Bont on Usk.  A long drive out with Nick, and a big walk up, with Alpha males offering to carry my bag part way, what a treat! Being one of the things men are good for, how can I refuse such a chivalrous offer? We launch from the lush moss and wildflower covered area nearest the carpark, after a few practice inflations in light wind, and I gain height rapidly, push out into the valley and set up a figure of eight circuit with Nick, circling in lift and drifting back to T.O. in sink, after half an hour the wind drops and we drift round the front of the trees and land near each other by the road. Nick walks back up for the windsock while I get the gliders aboard, and we enjoy a pint in the Red Cow on the way home.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2016, 20:28:16 PM »
6th May. Abernant. Thanks to a lift with NickR I have hopes of a little XC on the X-Alps, but after watching him for a couple of beats I launch and given my penchant for landing in the dumpsite lately, I stay well behind the fence below and use the hotspots at the gullies to creep higher, then the backslope to cruise back and fore, keeping away from the turbines which are merrily spinning into wind, wavebars are evident out front, people on Telegram saying it's gnarly, which it is here, so we land to groundhandle for a bit. 15 mins airtime. Short and sweet, like the birthday cake.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2016, 20:31:25 PM by Viv Birchgrove »
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2016, 17:45:40 PM »
17th April. Seven Sisters. Track improved, and a new pond. Light wind, slightly off the hill, pockets of snow in the fresh moss. C.D, Ben, DavidS, SteveB, Jared and later, JonM, we all test the air and land, clouds increase and so does the wind strength, I beat along the ridge until well above the trees, then bob across to the cliff, follow the lip of it along and push out over the track and field, then back to launch, repeat the circuit as the sun is obscured by clouds, I waft to earth by the cliff for a cuppa while I await developments, the windsock goes off even more, C.D ends up by McDonalds, Glynneath, retrieved by Steve, Jared's retrieve by me is much shorter. I fill my bag with a plethora of firewood. At the gate I find a * embedded in my tyre. 2 flights, a good half hour airtime.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #10 on: April 13, 2016, 11:17:49 AM »
12th April. Nant-y-Moel. A shout on Telegram and I find a good crowd parawaiting and scratching, some walking up from the bottom. The wind is off to the south, but after some groundhandling and a few inflations I feel ready for the maiden flight of the X-Alps. I tuck in close to the edge as the wind is light, and tickle along for a few beats, some above the ridge and some below, the sun is starting to warm the front of the slope and there is good lift from the albedo effect off the boulders behind the woods. I enjoy the feel of this glider, it's so light and responsive. I land at the back of the launch and the wing flops onto the muddy track to christen it. After lunch the wind is more onto the hill, still fickle though and I stay between the woods and the gully. Land nicely and bask in the enormous feeling of wellbeing like you do, and after tea go again, but venture too far out of the lift band and after some deperate scratching in sink head for a twmp in the valley. Land accurately in the long grass, Miss Muff-It on her tuffet, sending skylarks scattering, this is the perfect opportunity to test the Hike'n'fly capabilities of this wing. It is more Fly'n'hike, but a leisurely stroll back up the face is easy. 3 flights, 1 hour airtime.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2016, 12:47:37 PM »
5th April. Rhosili. Arrive lunchtime to see GerryL, Quint and Kate with family, SteveB, and a visitor from Derbishire.  The breeze is constant and I unwrap the new Gin X-Alps and lay it out for the first time. It's like tissue compared to the Zulu, the lines and risers have the delicate strength of nerves and tendons to the canopy, and the cells promise to eat the airflow through miniribs. I attach one set of risers and a gust rolls the wing, the boys are keen to help though and before too long we are all checked and ready to groundhandle. I strap in and, brakes in hand, gently fluff her out into a wall. The lines have a different layout, with soft shackles to add to the ineffable lightness of being (airborne). The wind has increased and the others launch, I practise getting the tips level and find the brakelines are so long that I have to stand with arms back like a jet in reverse launch position. I locate the C and D risers which are joined on one  strap, and use them to keep the wing from leaping into the air. The wind has by now picked up and I see even Gerry not making forward progress, people doing bigears and wingovers to get down, and peoples wings getting blown all around launch. I fold the wing into a concertina bag and leave it out in case conditions improve, but they don't, so I trudge down to the carpark for a cuppa with our visitors in their campervan, and the icecream shop for consolation and meet Barry with his kids. Nice to have got her out the bag, will wait for a nice calm light wind day for taking off for the first time. Didn't fancy my usual trick of being blown back today.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2016, 13:06:16 PM »
23rd March. Rhossili. light wind, a bit of groundhandling, several passes along the front, gaining little height, I keep scratching until I get above the ridge but it's overcast and the wind increasing as forecast. The tide is out and the beach wet so head for the pimple to land, unfortunately as I cruise up the gully there is a lull and I end up in the slurry, luckily the wing drops off to the side but my legs and harness are caked. 1 hr airtime, another hour sponging it all off. The new wing has arrived from Korea, hope this means an improvement in my flying.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan

Offline Vivien Biro

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Re: Viv's Blog 2016
« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2016, 11:06:41 AM »
18th March. Heol Senni. Lunchtime launch after minimal groundhandling, SteveW shows the way and Jared follows, I gain a little height and effect a little triangle out front, decide to land when the wind picks up and wisps are visible at low level, land ok but wing flops onto gorse, 25 mins airtime.
I may as well try to catch the wind - Donovan