Sunday 9th March

Your blogger didn't get a chance to write a post before going on holiday but felt the day's flying should be mentioned. Although there weren't any strong indications of wave, the sky gave the impression that something might be happening. A tow over the hills upwind of Wooler and towards the Langleford Valley gave results with rather patchy lift producing a knot or so. Things steadily improved though and from 5000' there was a steady 3 - 4 knots. The problems came with the increasing wind at height which eventually reached over 50kts and topped climbs at around 17,500'. Cloud cover was also came and went but not enough to prevent quite a few good flights. Sadly, apart from your blogger, none have been logged on the National Ladder. The BGA are again appealing for flights to be logged to support the case for the freedoms we have, so we must try harder ! Interestingly, when Kate Ashley rang to get the Southern wave box opened, we were again told of a 2 hour wait. The LOA we have makes no mention of this so it may be we will have to push against this. Having logger evidence may help.

On my way down I met Steve Marriott on the way up at around 12,000' and, just, managed to get a photo. I don't know how Steve found things when he descended but, by the time I came down the cloud cover was getting quite bad and meant quite a bit of manoeuvring to get through the gaps. The last person I passed on my way down was John Brown having his first flight in the Discus. The grin said it all when he landed !

DG300 at 12,000'

February 28th, 1st & 2nd March

A good weekend of flying started with a few hours of thermals on Friday 28th February. Barry Lytollis & Ken Sangster took the Ka21 for a mutual flight of an hour in quite decent thermals, as Barry's photo shows.

That's the way Ken !
Saturday saw wave set up, initially at the mouth of the valley where Steve Marriott climbed steadily away. Others soon joined him and started to explore further afield with the best lift being at the bottom of the Langleford Valley. Steve Marriott & Steve Rae both reached 5000'. The lift ran in zig-zag lines and it was possible to go down to Cornhill and then back up the Tweed, right over Ken Marston's house at Pressen. As the day progressed it became more unstable until quite strong thermals set up and produced some big showers which finally stopped us flying.

Sunday looked and felt very benign on the ground and the first few launches returned to the site without any soaring. Your blogger took a tow to Doddington and was rewarded by a steadily improving climb, eventually reaching 8000' The wind aloft was quite strong, 48 kts at one point, and the wave kept changing but several good flights were achived before, as had happened on Saturday, showers eventually got the better of the wave. A good weekend's flying but dampened by the sad news about Malcolm Parkes - he would have enjoyed it !