High Hopes in the French Alps

Work and Play

The Path to En"light"enment!

A partial working day today, as we had John with us this morning. It turned out to be a beautiful day.


I didn’t realise we were going to be working, but John requested some reinforcement of what he’d already learnt after quite a long break through the winter. He didn’t need much to get back up and running but flying was delayed a little for us. The usual suspects turned up today, as Chamonix wasn’t the best place to be it seemed, although some people flew over. Gavin, Willie, Laurence and JC were all here today.  After assisting  John with his launch,  and on the drive down I saw Mick and Marian driving up,  Mick was going to get to air his new glider for the first time… it was looking good.

It’s lovely to have Alex and Natalie with us again, and Alex was also flying his newly acquired wing. It was a slow start and after thinking that I hadn’t got enough clothing with me discovered that I’d got far too much stuff, in the shape of extra fleeces, a couple of pairs of gloves, jackets, I thought there’s no way I’m going to stuff all this lot in my harness! Silly girl… anyway, I had no choice Dennis had driven back home to drop Tizzy off, as it was just getting to hot for her, and I wanted to fly.

Anyway, I took off but with so much stuff in the back my feet were pointed skyward! not the best position…..  so had a fly around and landed, the air did feel good and it was all just ‘starting’.  Most of the others who had taken off earlier had landed not having managed a climb out.  It would have been easy to stay up this time but I just wasn’t comfortable so decided to take another ride back up to launch after dumping half my extra wardrobe in the van.

When I landed, I was expecting to assist John again, but he’d decided to go home as he wasn’t feeling great, and also had to pick his children up from school, so this time we would all fly.

I saw Gavin and JC scraping a climb out over the Lac Vert area whilst others were managing to climb out in front of launch (er herm!) and closer in. Dennis, Alex and me took off at more or less the same time, Mick was already climbing out above launch and it was looking good! I launched and got an instant climb out, but was struggling to get into my harness having got the speedbar wrapped around the footplate so was dangling out of my harness for the first thermal until I’d got to a reasonable height to faff about trying to get into the pod… which I did eventually. So there’s another job needs doing! Dennis climbed out towards the back wall and Col d’Antern where I climbed up back over towards Lac Vert and then the back wall.. then I barred over to the Butress where it was nice climbing again up to Varan, and across to Tête Noir… a nice flight, but wished I’d made a bit more of it. Just don’t know when it’s going to be that good again….?

Coming into land, there was a earthstuck thermal just breaking off near the landing field which I couldn’t resist and took partway back up but I also got distracted with thinking about having to get the bus back, and Dennis had arranged to try the new Sigma 8, from Gavin, which Willie had been test flying earlier today and I could see that they had landed, so if I landed I’d be able to get a lift back up to launch to collect the bus and also check the arrangements for Dennis to fly the Sigma 8, unfortuantely for me I’m too much of a lightweight for this size as much as I’d love to try it.

Anyway, I cadged a lift up with Laurence and I had to call Dennis in to land to watch my glider and borrow the Sigma 8. So it all worked out well.. Mick had a much better flight, Alex got a good flight in and everyone was happy!

It turned out a lovely day’s flying, more of the same please….

Hopefully tomorrow, Dennis will get to fly the S8…

April 7, 2011 - Posted by | Flying

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