Wind: Light and Variable
Altitudes: 6000+ msl
Time Aloft: More than 2.5 hours
Max Lift: 5-600 fpm
Temperature: Mid 70's
Comment: Banquet a success.
Tow pilot: Not sure.
Richard Walker wrote a very nice summary of the day at Avenal but I failed to post it in the right order. Here it is, so enjoy:
Friday Rick Eason, Jan Zanutto, and I arrived to assemble their new Lark glider. It went together uneventfully. Pleasing both of them I am sure. It now awaits a test flight. Similar to the 1-35, but built like a tank. Just check out those tip wheel mounts when you are down there. Dual O-2 tanks and military style regulator. Settings to 45K plus. Now that is optimism.
Saturday while not a boomer of a day saw flights of 2.5 hrs altitudes to 6k or maybe more. Of course Morgan made it to Merced and back. Probably a bit more stressful than usual as he thought he might have to land out. Down to about 2500' as I heard.
While there were clouds they mostly marked sink. The private ships could get to Black usually as lift in the valley went to about 5k consistently. Rick Eason and Don Flinn flew the Grob about 11 or 11:30 and stayed up for close to an hour as I recall on Rick's first flight. The second one, ah.... not so long. He got stuck in one of those down cycles.
Joe Anastasio had a around a 2.5 hr flight. Julie flew twice, but I didn't get her times aloft. Wyll Soll and Jerry Badal flew their Libelles and may have had flights similar to Joe's.
Kevin flew his motor glider over to Black and to Coalinga I believe. I watched him land from the air getting back in time for the banquet.
I flew the 1-35 a bit early for a .8 and put it away. Seeing Mario Pauda getting ready for launch I pulled out my 1-26. Getting low I found the house thermal which Mario joined me in and we thermalled together gaining 3k feet topping out at 5700'. Julie joined us for a threesome till one of the Libelles made it a four some. Mario and I had a blast as we were at the same altitude staying centered in the thermal all the way to the top. Mario headed toward Black with me right behind. He headed north to explore along the mountain edge. I stayed on course to Black not quite making it. It is a 1-26 so headed out and tried to get to Mario who was a bit lower and closer to Coalinga. Coward that I am I turned back for Avenal finding lift most of the way. My watch says time to land if I expect to take this thing apart and make the Banquet. Glider pilots' curse. Lift everywhere and you have to come down. Even at 80 mph in the 1-26 the decent was too slow. Slow up and full spoilers. Still 5 minutes to full stop and a 1.5 hr flight Memorable flight with Mario, Julie, and the Libelle in a gaggle.
Disassembled the glider with help from Jim Rickey, Rick Eason and one or two others.
Off to the Banquet where several members are waiting and setting up additional tables for those to follow. Some good conversation till everyone arrives and we order. Had a very good meal, excellent company, and some fine people running the restaurant.
Mike Paoli presented honorary memberships to Del Bloomquist and Mario Crosina for their efforts in the club and soaring in general. They each gave a talk on how they got into soaring as well as club history. Very interesting talks from both of them.
Earlier in the day Jim Rickey looked thru Saturday's mail and opened a letter from the IRS. He immediately consulted with Mike on its' significance. Mike gave me the honor of reading its' contents. IRS approval for our 501(c)3 status. What a wonderful day. I do not have enough space to thank everyone who helped on the 501(c)3. However a few deserve special recognition. Kevin for his editorial help in putting together a superior application. Dennis L. for helping to get this back on track and pushing for its' completion, Dan Gudgel for hounding me year after year about its status. Mike Paoli for his confidence in me that signing IRS document wouldn't put him in jail. Morgan and the Board past and present who worked so hard on the final bylaws. The Club owes you guys a special thanks as they will reap the rewards of your accomplishment. .