09 August 2010

Getting back in the groove...

It's the week-end, the weather is favorable, I go to the landing site in Orcier. A few pilots are in the air, they must have taken off quite early in the afternoon, as it's not much later than 14:30. One of them is lining up to land, and we wonder about his identity. Francis comments that a lot of pilots have bought new wings and it's now difficult to recognise everybody.

The suspense is of short duration, it turns out that the pilot that has just removed his helmet is François. I'm slightly disappointed as I wanted to fly with him.

He's followed shortly by another pilot, and we ask the classic questions about the conditions. It turns out that their flight was quite short, the wind is quite unstable, the thermals not established yet. We get busy with replacing the windsock nex to the club-house to pass the time. The previous one has laster for a few years, I remember climbing up the pear-tree to replace it.

The first take off spot.

More pilots arrive, and there's soon a small crowd. As usual, we organise a few cars to go up and leave for Très-Le-Mont. I choose the second take off, as quite a few hang-glider pilots are getting ready near the first one, and it's quieter anyway.

Philippe laying his wing

Three pilots are getting ready as I get to the spot, and I take place in the queue. It takes quite a while for them to take off, as the wind is really irregular.


By the time it's my turn to layout my wing, the fee puffs of wind have died down and 'm left to take off in an almost null wind. The absence of headwind makes the rise of my wing very fast, I expected that and pulled the brakes in time, my take off is clean.

Just at the front of the take off there is a very weak thermal, I make two passes but don't gain altitude, so I push forward to the front of the ridge. The pilots that took off before me seem to be gaining altitude there, so I decide to imitate them.

The crossing is rather bumpy, there are thermal bubbles popping all over the place. When I get to the classic thermal spot in front of the ridge, I manage to gain some height, after fighting for quite some time. But then the thermal dies off and I go further along the ridge to explore a bit and see if I can't find another thermal. My bet pays off and I rise quite a bit. At one point, a rapace comes to investigate me. Unfortunately, I only have the wide angle lense on the camera, and my hands are really to occupied with the controls to let go and grab the camera. Pitty, that was a magnificent bird...

The usual panorama...

I spend another few minutes in the air, and decide to land. The heat makes everything quite heavy, the air is mostly stable, and landing is uneventful.

Time to go home for a late afternoon relaxing drink...
Late afternoon relaxation...


Blogger 蔡曼鄭美玉屏 said...

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Blogger 孫邦柔 said...

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Blogger ParaScubaSailor said...

Hello All!

Thank you for your comments. I wish I was fluent in Chinese, but unfortunately I have to let Google translate your comments for me, and I'm not sure it's doing a good job.

I just wanted to tell you I'm pleased that these modest accounts are read from the other side of what turns out to be a small planet, after all!

Keep well, brothers and sisters.

Daniel :-)

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