November 18th. 2010
18th November 2010
Just the one flight on Sunday but it was a beauty. I could see the wave conditions set up, out from the TV translator tower on the mountain as I was helping to shift cattle to new grazing on Frankley Road.
A quick call to Tim who thereupon headed for the field and he and John Tullett were towed off by John McFadgen. I gather the tow was a bit on the rough side for a bit. A call to John to “move out a bit” eased the rough bits and then all of a sudden they hit smooth wave lift. Release height was 6000ft. A call to Christchurch Control then back to New Plymouth Tower who cleared them to 15000ft. Oxygen switched on and they were soon at 15000ft with the lift still going strong at 1000ft per minute. A Diamond gain of height of 6000 metres would surely have been on. They were asked to remain between 10 & 15000ft while traffic went through, then, after a plaintive call asking “can we come down now?” Control relented and they were back on the field, two hours after take-off.
Conditions were not suitable for general club flying but, as a soaring opportunity, superb. Let us keep marvelling at the combination of man, machine and the expression of knowledge of what the air can provide. Lose the wonder and we lose the unique chance of such flying.
Stats: Aircraft Time Flights
WZ 2 hours (1)
RWS 16m (1)
Best height 15000ft
Height gained 9000ft
Tim took some good photos, three of which are included below.
On Tuesday evening there was a discussion on thermaling, cross-country flying and paddock landings with thoughts of some good flying ahead as summer rolls in.
14000ft and 1000ft per minute!
Cloud cap on the mountain and rotor cloud at left.
The view from 15000ft.