An early start, but this time it was for a harness testing at Deimos HQ.
Matt was quick to decide that he needed an airbag harness so he selected the U-Turn IQ5 harness (which happens to be the same harness I fly with). Next was the P2 exam Section three, but said it was still too early for that so instead we watched Ultra low flying – still a useful and impressive video for being about 20 years old now! A quick check of the weather and we headed to Exit 92 to meet with Cliff and then off to Bridal. It seemed a little too strong still so we worked together on adding another step on one of the lower slippery sections. We were done in about 30 minutes and the wind was surprisingly not too strong now, so Cliff and Matt launched. I followed as usual. About 30 minutes later and Clif was below launch, so I decided to top land while it was still easy. Matt was just a couple meters off his spot landing leaving just one more spot landing for his P2 rating.
For our second flight (sled rides) Cliff volunteered to drive down allowing me to test out a B-Stall on the Black Lite II, while Matty played with his new harness and the Muse. Next week my new ProDesign wing arrives – can’t wait!
So it is a scientific fact that Cliff has the Whidbey curse, or else Brian and Art have mega Karma points!
My self, Brian and family spent the night at the Whidbey drive-in then very early (7am) headed over to Fort Ebey.
Matt and Andrew were already kiting but the wind was South and a little too lite to fly – so as Clif knows well (what happens next) we waited (slept some more and worked on our stick finding). I had rated the site 100% chance of flying and was not planning to leave until I flew. Sure enough around 2:30 the wind direction changed to West and everyone was flying. Each minute after 3pm it slowly started to pick up until around 4pm it was too much. We all had many flights, some landing in weird places (Art). Superfun!
A tricky afternoon of tandems at Bridal. The air was very “soft” at times which caused me to shorten my flight on the first launch. Probably a good thing because my passenger just started feeling queasy about one minute from landing. More tricky conditions but we still managed a nice launch and a smooth second flight. Another great day at Bridal!
Mark, Jon and Clif were all on time (as usual actually) so we headed up Bridal. Light conditions as predicted so we waited about ½ hour. Clif went first and immediately sank out, but after a short time he was back. Jon had another perfect launch, not distracted by his upcoming wedding next week. But Mark was a different story. Coming from a different school (mostly self-taught I think) his technique is nothing close to the Deimos method, both forward and reverse launches, so his results may vary. On this day they varied considerably! 9 out of 10 on my crash scale. He did clear launch and managed about two hours of air time – like the rest of us.
Conditions were started to back off so I top landed just to make sure we had a driver, moment later I hear Jonathan come crashing in arriving about ten feet too low – his first Top Landing at Bridal (speech to follow – see below). Soon Clif was back above launch so I suggested that he try a few 30’ fly byes.
On his third fly-by the sky gods showed their wrath and gave him a nice 50% collapse, but he handled it perfectly and head back out to the center of the air (the edges can be rough at times).
I was just about to head home when Will and Jeremy showed up “forcing” me to fly again. I switched wings so I got to fly my old U-Turn Obsession while Jeremy flew my new U-Turn Blacklite II. Two completely different wings. I was amazed how much faster the Blacklite was. We flew for another hour plus in better conditions, with Will as our driver – thanks.
- If you don’t have time to practice your launches at your local hills, then at least do a few practice aborts on launch.
- Unless there is a good reason to top land, best to take a pass – there is about a 1% chance IMHO that you will crash and get hurt killed or worst!
Reports of stronger wind due to arrive in the afternoon had as worried, So Maty and I launched a bit early. By the time we were ready to launch, a few of the beginner students had already called it quits. Our flight was relatively smooth with about a half hour long with a zero wind landing.
Super nice to be back in Pemberton again!
Surnny and hot
An interesting start to a great couple of days of flying in Pemberton.
After picking up Maty, I guess I was too excited to start our next Deimos adventure that I turned down a one-way street. Moments later I was stopped and reminded by a very kind police officer. Even with the extra delays we arrived right on time. A small crowd of pilots were waiting for Guy to arrive - overdue to road blockages due to parades . Upper launch had slightly cross but light conditions so we waited. Eventually we all launched and enjoy relatively smooth conditions for a 90 flight. Once in the air, conditions eventually got too strong so all but one pilot landed. I gave Maty a tour of Narin Falls and Mile One swimming pond. At 5:30 we packed up the truck and raced back up to Upper Launch. Conditions were still too hot so we needed to wait some more. Around 7pm I started kiting my Blacklight II (using very heavy D-Risers), by 7:30 it was time. Not quite the smooth Magic lift I remembered but constant lift was everywhere. With almost no effort I was able to persuade Maty to try (again) a Baby Spiral starting more than 6000’ AGL. The Muse, as usual, kicked him out after just a few 360’s. So we did a few more just for fun. Conditions at the School were still very strong, so we all followed Janice out to the Miller LZ. Thanks again to Guy for picking us up.
Apparently, my stomach did not like the little bugs that live in the Mile One Pond and immediately let me know just moments before we had our camp set up – not my favorite memory. Maty wanted me to burn my shorts but instead I was able to clean them. This gave me a strong flashback of when my kids were baby’s and some of the classic BM’s they would surprise me with!
The mosquitoes were quite persistent, but I was too tied to fight them so I crawled into my “bivy bag” and past out.
Bridal then Woodside
Movie Dave, after recovering from some major life changing events, took to the sky today. We started early, at Bridal, so he could practice his forward launches. The Aeros Vitamin was the best choice due to the light conditions. After his flight, we headed to the Wildcat for a brief lunch and lots of catching up. It’s been about three year since he flew last.
Pilots at Woodside were about 1000’ over so we headed there. Dave, flying his new U-Turn Infinity, had a good launch and was even with launch for about 15 minutes but eventual chose to head to the Dykes before he got too low. I launched and was above take off until I aborted a few top landing attempts (It was difficult to set up with pilots everywhere). Eventual I made a sweet landing (between launches).
I was hoping for another flight but Dave got the “Call” so we called it a day.
Welcome back Dave!
Surprisingly light conditions at launch, so we waited. I was busy cleaning up the trash and installing a few new steps, the first of many to come (I just need to find the materials). A big thank you to all that worked on Bridal last week – nice improvement with the road, bushes and tree topping.
Finally, it was time to fly. Jonathan was our wind dummy, since I promised to pick him up if he sank out; instead he shot up to 3500’ which sparked the rest of us to gear up. Maty joined Jon for awhile, but by the time I was ready they were both below launch. A quick drive down and up again. The shade was even more pronounced this time around so we waited again. A few pilots could not wait any longer (for thermals) and ended up heading to the LZ. Another 15 minutes and the sun was back bringing lots of fun thermals. Maty and I flew halfway to upper and Cheam then back to launch. I was worried about rotor and collapses so we keep our distance from the tree. Jon reported a 50% collapse so probably a good idea.
After about 1.5 hours it calmed down enough to top land and call it a day. A couple more days and Maty will be singed off – another Deimosian is born!
Conditions were just starting to pick up when Clif , Maty and I arrive on launch in Maty’s near new Zip car. Jim's student made it without issue to the Eagle Ranch: but to keep it simple, our plan was for the Dykes (typically smoother air) instead of Riverside. Elena and Andrei reported bad conditions there earlier.
Maty had a near perfect launch, but my rushing did not impress the judges - Clif was criticizing me for hours afterwards, but since it was his 32 birthday (or so) I decided to agree to practice more next time!
Happy birthday old man!
With Ivan’s help – Clif and I got to have a challenging flight with lots of scratching. Unlike Clif who landed just a few feet off the target, I misread the LZ and picked up a last minute unwanted 20’ and slightly over shot the target by a 3-4 meters.
Andrei managed Jeremy, while I flew with Colin. After about 30 minutes Colin got caught up in the excitement and started to feel uneasy so we headed out (no Titanic this time).
Surprising nicer conditions for our second flights. Tim and I had a great flight flying over to the Cheam Valley and back, ending our flight with a baby spiral and big wing overs – I decided to leave the Titanic for next flight.
Mark had a 1.5 hour flight and landed just because. Lots of pilot high so another great day at Bridal!
A fun afternoon at Bridal. It was Clif, Mark and Maty today. Clif set his new personal best for highest and longest flight (2:30), outstanding for being his first flight of the year! Mark was away from the sport for a few years and also managed a long two hour flight. Both Mark and Maty made some errors during their SIV maneuvers, and conditions were starting to pick up, so I ordered Maty to the ground. I managed another soft top landing (On my Blacklite II) and headed down to pick up the boys. However they were all spent after their long flights so we called it a day.
Some Deimosian’s are flying under the radar by not paying their WCSC fees – if you fly Bridal, or Woodside then you need to help share in the costs. Please update your membership. Thanks to whomever cut the the grass in the LZ. Congrat's to Peter Spear with his huge XC flight in Alberta - 307 km! World record is 514 km.
As predicted, another perfect day of high flights at Bridal with my newest student Maty climbing to more than 4000’ (with me as his wing man) on his tenth flight. I sensed that the conditions were still building, so we headed out over the golf course to do some baby SIV maneuvers. Maty continued to over-steer his Muse, but by his forth asymetrical he had it mostly sorted out.
While Maty heading into the LZ (I top landed on my new U-Turn Black Light 2, softest landing ever), with BE to the ground and then raced down to pick up Jeremy, Jonathan, Norm, Tual, Curstie and a few others. Because the thermals were peaking at 5-7 m/s it was time for a big tandem flight for Maty. In no time at all we were at upper launch and on our way to Gloria, Elk and Woodside. About half way to Woodside we decided to head back to Bridal LZ – I think the cold air at 6000’ took its toll on us.
Super day – great to see all the Deimosians out there: like Peter, Claudia, Laura, Karen, and Jeremy.
PS – the Bridal LZ is almost overgrown – time for a hair cut!
Bridal and Woodside
A little too much cloud at Bridal but both Chris and Jonathan managed to get above launch.
But by the time I launched, it was too cross and time for a nice sled ride (no trip to Yak peak as planned).
Next, we headed over to Woodside. Norm went first and slowly climbed to about 3200’, followed by myself and eventually Jonathan. Andrei and Chris along with many fresh pilots decided to wait it out.
A pleasant 1.5 hour or so flight on my new Blacklight II.
Another super fun weekend with lots of interesting a delicious camping food and a variety of flights. More than 20 paragliding pilots and 15+ hang gliders too.
My newest student Maty join us for mostly kiting but still managed three flights over two days. Thanks to Gabby and others for keeping an eye on Maty and offering the odd tip or two.
I spent the whole weekend focusing on Maty and his training but still managed a flight a Mid Toilet Bowl, the Dumps (high wind soaring) and Mt Baldly.
The driving time did not equal the air time, but totally worth it!
I spent a few hours with Miranda practising my tandem and solo launches.
Miranda was a quick study and did 4-5 flights at at 30' high - super fun!
It must be a Clark gene: looks like she will be ready to fly soon, but we just need to convince her mom! Only 14 still.
Note: you can not consider a training hill flight as an offical flight, however, you can add the air time to your log book. This is usuful for wing resale hours later.
An official flight must be more than two minutes long.