Monday 30 December 2013

Stanwell again and 28km flight

Flying in Stanwell can be boring after some time especially if you hang out near take off for too long. That is why some of us like exploring the North and South from Stanwell. Going North is relatively easy, there are no 'jumps' without the ridge. You just have to watch the weather because walk from the deserted beach on the bottom can be long and 'exciting' (famous Australian snakes and spiders...). On the other hand no one wants to be blown to the lee side of the hill. It is never a good idea for paragliders.

Ralph, Mitsi, Alex and Nir encouraged me to go down south and do the 'jump' over Stawell Park. If the wind is right it is relatively easy. If not you can struggle and end up on the bottom. This time I get lucky and went South with Nir and one hangie pilot. Going south was fun with a bit of tail wind component. In the meantime down over the beach a squadron of seven Navy helicopters flew past approximately about 2km away (probably with Prince Harry). Ok, that is a safe distance.

Coming back was a bit tricky since the wind turned a bit more northerly and there was not much ridge lift. Using thermals I managed to come back and top land. This was more of a thermal flight then soaring in the end. Smooth, strong and narrow thermals were fun.

Monday 23 December 2013

Orographic cloud flying

The same day when I had chance to try Mantra R10 an orographic cloud arrived to Stanwell and I had tasted this amazing experience. 

First I was a bit concerned about flying in the cloud, close to the ridge and with bunch of other pilots. Finally I decided to take off and try it. During the launch the take off was clear of clouds. A few minutes in the air I was not able to see the launch zone. Fortunately I had my compass and GPS so I could always find East which is away from the hill in Stanwell. Epic flying and scenery! I hope I will be able to do this again soon, very new sensations - I felt like the king :)

The wind picked up a bit and more clouds were coming but I didn't want to land on the bottom so I waited for the clear window to top land in between the clouds. A minute after I touched down when clouds closed the hole and we were in the wet fog again. 

 Unfortunately I didn't bring my camera with me... a few pictures below - thanks to John and Sean.

Monday 16 December 2013

Blue thermals

The beginning of this spring was full of good days with blue thermals and not many clouds. A nice picture of me thermaling taken by Ovy:

Monday 9 December 2013

Blue Mountains flying

One of my friends took some pictures of me flying the other day in Blue Mountains. Thanks Kacper!

Monday 2 December 2013

Flying Icepeak 6

By courtesy of Mitsi I was able to try Icepeak 6. This is one of the top comp high-end EN-D gliders these days.
Once again a day with light wind was a good opportunity to try a new wing. Mitsi gave me a couple of advices (including take off). First two take-off attempts were unsuccessful due to cravat on the left wing-tip. Third attempt was al right and I was in the air. Over 10 passes along the ridge close to the cliffs and I hoped that I can topland this thing. At the same moment some other pilot launched. There was no way to get up no being close to the wall all the time. Smooth glide to over the landing zone and ... I am way too high. Wow, this thing can glide pretty well!  Icepean 6 has very short brake travel and is very responsive. I like that. I didn't know about the 'shark nose' technology before though when I looked up at the wing during the flight I  was a little bit surprised. Hope to fly the wing again soon!