Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Last Gliding Post this month - I promise :)

I went up to the Drakensberg last weekend to do some gliding, but the weather forecast was not all that great. On Sunday morning, we took the Motorglider (Grob 109) out fairly early and took off while the rest of the crew were getting ready for flying. The cold front, that had brought temperatures down to freezing point the night before, was just passing through and I had a suspicion that we may find some good lift. We immediately picked up a strong, gusty thermal that took us up to 8000ft and then headed off to the Berg. Although the wind on the ground was reasonably calm, I picked up that we had a 45 knot headwind - perfect conditions for wave flying. Within a few minutes we were firmly established in the wave and climbed up to 14,000ft, at over 1000 ft/min (5m/second) - see the instruments in the first picture above. The wave was still strong, but we bailed out as we did not have any oxygen and took a gentle glide back to the airfield. This was definitely one of those flights that I will remember forever.

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