Sunday, May 1, 2016

SATURDAY, April 23, 2016. New Member, Joshua Egorov. Welcome Josh.

Visibility: Unlimited
Wind: Mostly steady from the NNW.
Altitudes:6000 +
Time Aloft: Several hours.
Max Lift: 500 fpm
Temperature: High 70's
Comment: Clark Woolf best flight ever. Jim Rickey up a long time, showing where the lift was.
Tow pilot: Ethan Ronat

It was an interesting day because very few high performance sailplane pilots showed up. The weather turned out to be excellent for soaring above 6000 msl. Clark Woolf and I were first aloft and it took no time at all to reach 5000 msl. Then Clark struggled to find out how to descend from that height when the thermals were everywhere and he couldn't get down, even with the dive brakes open, and the nose pointed down at 60 mph. In spite of that, it was his best flight ever and he worked the thermals completely without any input from me in the back seat.

We are fortunate to have another young man, a high school student, Joshua Egorov, join the club today. He came out with his Dad, Gary and brother, all to offer support in Josh's pursuit of a new hobby. Unfortunately by the time they arrived in late afternoon the lift had begun it's daily demise, with all the cloud markers disappearing at the same time. That's an interesting phenomenon because it shows the moment when the air mass changes quickly and lift ceases. So, we didn't have a lot of time in the air and the lift break up was accompanied by a lot of rough air, mostly sink. Next time will be much better for Josh.

Those who showed up today were glad they did. Those who chose to stay home missed a fun day well above 4000 msl, with clear blue skies and mild temperatures.

Clark Woolf preflighting the glider before his training lessons.
Sergio Grajeda doing a walk-around of the glider he's soon to fly.
Sergio Grajeda and Alex Caldwell nearly ready to launch for another training flight.
Clark Woolf at 5000 msl on his best flight ever, highest and longest.
We lingered at 5000 msl because the lift was so strong we struggled to descend.
One weekend of the year they have sand drags just south of Avenal.
We can't deny the beauty of Big Bird as she flies around the area.
Sergio and Alex having fun beneath our thermal, sometimes they marked the thermals.
Much easier photographing the glider from above rather than when they were higher.
You can almost see Sergio's curly hair in this sharp photo.
Nice view against the mountain background. They had fun for more than an hour.
Andy Reistetter enjoying the 1-26 and the great lift he found.
Looks like we could jump into the cockpit with Andy as he flies underneath us.
Andy finally outclimbed us so no more photographs.
All those nice cumulus were beckoning to everyone, including the 2-33 fliers.
Alex  about to take a visitor for a demo ride in the Orange Crush.
Luis Mendoza showed up with two friends from the area and he suggested a glider ride.
Luis here after the ride and really enjoyed the experience.
Sergio Grajeda walking past the glider he enjoys flying.
Andy Reistetter is going flying again in the 1-26, for another good time aloft.
Finally as the day progressed, Jim Rickey decided it was his turn to soar.
And did he ever soar, over 6000 msl, up several hours, showing everyone where the lift was.
Jim is always allowing everyone else to fly before him and it's about time he took a turn.
Jim is looking good behind the tow plane and just about to lift the wheel off the runway.
Big Bird is airborne and clearing the obstructions.
We didn't see Jim for a long time since he's good at finding and working thermals.
This time Sergio decided to take the Orange Crush with Peter Sahlberg running the wing..
Richard Walker about to board his Schweizer 1-35 and head for the lift where others were.
Jim Rickey high above 6000 msl with photo taken with a telephoto lens.
Jim working the lift and those coming after him can't miss that yellow Big Bird.
Richard Walker launching in the 1-35 will also find the lift that was in very specific areas.
Andy Reistetter is back from his second flight of the day, and happy to have done it.

A snaky dust devil arises from the work area of the soon-to-be solar farm.
Richard Walker is going flying again and this time should be much better than last.
Joshua Egorov in the Orange Crush for his first flight lesson as a new CCSC member. Dad, Gary, and brother alongside providing support for his choice of a new hobby.
Linda from Avenal, along with Andy Reistetter and Peter Sahlberg enjoy the beautiful day.
Linda's friend, Linda, on the pole, with Steve Schery sitting and Andy listening to the chatter.
On Sunday, April 24th, Peter Mersino flew to Harris Ranch to retrieve Carl Engel whose glider is to the left. They did well on the retrieve off a short and narrow runway and returned home to Avenal successfully.

We look forward to seeing all of you back at Avenal next Saturday when we trust the lift will be as good or better than today.

Harold Gallagher

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