For the first time I have managed to do some mid-week flying at the club. My club operates 7 days and the weather forecast looking good for Tuesday and Wednesday coincided with some leave. With only a handful out at the cub on the Tuesday, I got two check flights in (the second one 35 minutes with the instructor showing me some thermalling techniques), followed by a 57 minute solo flight with lots of thermalling.
I had a few gadgets with me that day - my FlywithCE logger (more on that in a later post I think) and an 808 mini keychain video camera (ditto - more on that in another post). The logger worked fine, but the 808 camera hadn't charged with its supplied USB connection.
I planned a 3,000 foot launch (cloudbase was about 3,000 or a bit more by that time) but the tuggie took me through a pearler of a thermal, so I bunged off early, at a bit over 2,000 and then connected with good thermals right up to cloud base.
It was a delightful day's flying, and I could get back to cloudbase seemingly at will. At one point, heading back towards the field, I had to descend at 80 knots with full airbrakes out to get under a cloud that had a base below me. I also had to circle to throw away height to join the circuit.
The 57 minute duration was an added bonus - I have paid up for the Club's Bulk Flying Scheme - $420 up front means that all my flights are free up to an hour's duration, so all I had to pay were tow charges. Beauty!
The second day, the Wednesday, was forecast to be much better, until a thunderstorm in the afternoon, but the situation changed and the day was flat at the start - no-one could find any lift. I got some useful experience in helping to rig the Club's DG-303 and in my two short check flights with a perfectionist instructor I learned more about precision flying, and I finally managed a solo flight at about 3.00pm, with storm clouds brewing in the north.
I had my new Panasonic Lumix TZ10 camera with me and took a few snaps below, including flying in company with the DG, trying to make something of some scratchy lift. Maintained height for a while, but couldn't centre it - was in as much sink as lift every turn, no matter how I adjusted.
Looking at my logs in Google Earth and SeeYou from that day, I was pleased to see how nice my circuit looked, especially my nice square base legs.