Gliders beat the weather

10:41 30 January 2014

A busy launch point at North Hill airfield.

A busy launch point at North Hill airfield.


We battled with the weather and managed to fly on three days this week, although on Wednesday we did only get three flights in amongst the showers, writes Jill Harmer.

Thursday was a better day, but despite there being quite a lot of cloud cover, the ridge was working as far as Blackborough in the strong north westerly wind, and every so often a thermal was generated on the ridge. Everybody had soaring flights of up to an hour, with an empty launch point for most of the day.

Saturday dawned bright and sunny, with a gentle westerly wind which increased quite suddenly at lunch time. The sky filled in with cloud several times during the morning, and as the wind picked up, John Pursey in the Eagle reported that some wave lift was being generated right over the Ridge. Pete Startup from Ottery St Mary took a tow in his Discus glider and Matthew Williamson in his SF27 glider also joined in the fun, climbing to over 3000ft above the airfield. However the wave flying was short-lived as the cloud suddenly started forming at lower levels and they were all forced to come down to below cloud base at 1500ft. With increasing turbulence, we put the gliders safely back in the hangar.

Meanwhile we had news that Andrew Mugleston from Kerswell, who is on holiday in New Zealand, has just achieved his Gold Height. He reached an altitude of 17,500 feet, using wave lift in the land of the long white cloud, to complete his International Gold Badge.

Interested in gliding with us at Devon and Somerset Gliding Club? Visit our website


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