Black Mountains Gliding Club
BMGC Flying Reports
Thursday 25 November
wave to 5000 temperature minus 9
Here is a quick summary of today's flying. Cold, with a light NW wind that increased later in the day. John Poland towed us to the main ridge and several pilots contacted wave straight off tow which went to, I think, around 5500ft above site. I think John Coward won the day for height gain but I definitely won it for endurance .... it was minus 9 deg C in Snoopy at 5000QNH in the wave... hoorah for electric feet!
Saturday 13 November
Ridge, thermal and wave to 12000
Wednesday 10 November 2010
Ridge and thermal in the November sun
Day started bright, sunny and very cold (-2ºC) but as feared with little if any wind. As we thought might happen the wind had dropped off sooner than originally forecast so most of the 10 that had turned started doing some fettling whilst a couple did get onto launch for what looked like a bit of a sleigh ride.
And then, as they say, at around noon a light NW breeze drifted across the field catching everyone's attention. Within 30 mins we had a small queue at take-off.
Anyway upshot was a ridge which was working extremely well, considering we only had about 9-10kts of wind on it, and more surprisingly 2-3kt thermals up to a cloudbase around 4500ft amsl.
During the day the wind backed to 270º and the thermal weakened as you'd expect but flying continued until late in the afternoon.
So in summary not a bad day and,looking out the window at the wind and rain today, definitely the best of the week.
Sunday 24 October 2010
Beautiful bright day with a light/mod NNE wind. Launches generally got dropped onto Hay Bluff and the worked the ridge between the Bluff and Black Hill. It was very soft at times and a bit too crowded for my liking at times. Cloudbase was not particularly high at around 3000ft amsl. There was the occasional light wave which came in and out of phase and gave small gains up the side of cloud.
Saturday 23 October 2010
Grey, wet and low orographic cloud did nothing to raise the hopes of members and visitors from Nympsfield, Stratford, North Hill and other clubs! A wet walkabout on the airfield plus some simulator training plus videos in the Briefing Room all helped though! (What a great boon the BR is on days like today!)
Around 1400hrs, a clearance appeared and we got airborne and quickly contacted NW wave which went to around 7000ft above site. Spectacular lighting and a great sunset soon put smiles on all those who got off the ground behind Don Gosden and Geoff King in PA.
Another typical BMGC day that surprised and delighted our visitors.
Wednesday 20 October 2010
Ridge, wave and thermal
Very cold day (minus 6 at 6000ft) but lovely, crisp and clear with a light/mod NNW wind backing WNW. Bit soft on ridge at first but wave started to kick in and with it some quite energetic thermals. cloud base started quite low at 3000ft amsl but eventually went up to an amazing 5000ft amsl in October!
Friday 8 to Monday 11 October 2010
Wave, wave and more wave!
Friday 8: Steady east wind produced gentle wave underc 8/8 overcast to the base of the airway at FL125. Several visitors from Oxford GC contacted and filled many memory cards with photos.
Saturday 9: wave was definitely there in the east wind but tantilisingly 8/8 cover prevented launching. Our tug flew a test sortie and the pilot report that he was still climbing at 10kts with the engine throttled right back.
Sunday 10: dawned misty but soon cleared to give a superb east wave day with many climbing to the base of the airway (FL125) Smiles all round.
Monday 11: early cloud cleared quickly but an exploratory tow gave east wave that was contacted only 900ft above site. Again, we had stunning views on the Beacons from the near the base of the airway. Best height was just over FL120.
Tuesday 12: ... wait and see but it is looking like yet another great wave day.
Weekend 25/26 September 2010
Ridge, thermal and wave...
With a weekend of sunshine and northerly wind many hours of soaring were enjoyed by members and visiting pilots from Dunstable, Nympsfield and North Hill. On Saturday there were lots of ridges to soar and good thermals and on Sunday wave in the Cwm Du valley was added to the mix.
Sunday 15 and Monday 16 August 2010
Sunday dawned grey and dull although reports were that the rest of the country was bathed in sunshine. Cloud burnt off and flying started around 1300hrs with weak NE wave plus themal and ridge on Troed. Late in the day, good thermals to 4k arrived and the NW ridge performed until late impressing some visitors from Usk.
Thursday 12 and Friday 13 August 2010
Despite a poor forecast, NW wave appeared on Thursday and Martin Brock, Robbie R, John Horley all had a lot of fun with MB getting highest at around 7,000ft near Shobdon. Also spotted out having fun in the wave was John Bally in the Stemme and Phil King in 618 out of Shobdon.
Saturday 26 June 2010
Wow was it hot? Well it was on the ground anyway, which is why we all got of it as soon as we could.
Friday 25 June 2010
It was soarable with a tow to 2000 or so from probably about 11 am and the thermal profiles were very ragged and generally weak below that although there were narrow very transitory strong upcurrents which could not easily be centred on. About 6 full flying members and i think two dual flying pilots rose to the occasion , all having a good time in thermals that eventually improved from 1.5kt avg. climb rate to abut 3 kt or so from 14.30. After this some x-c flying became sensible with Mike and Les going to Knighton , and Presteine/Builth/ beacons ish respectively. The best Qfe i had was 4200' with a solid 4kt avg. climb at 16.00 near Builth. Generally the usable height band seemed to be from 2 to 3,300'. Below 2000 often needed a struggle to connect with the upper 'meaty' lift.
Sunday 20 June 2010
It did get better again late in the day on Sunday - having failed to stay up earlier, I took the Junior up again and Brock towed me straight to what seemed to be the only bit of the sky that was actually going up instead of down, out towards Brecon. (Thanks Brock! Much appreciated, it was lovely over there.) I stayed up for about an hour and a half in the end. Came down just before 7pm as I decided it was probably getting a bit late and needed to get home, but there was still plenty of lift about at that point.
Weekend 19/20 June 2010
Good weekend with a small band of regulars out on both days and plenty of Air Ex flights to keep the coffers topped up.
Saturday started fairly unimpressively with a moderate northerly and lots of cloud cover. So most of us did a bit of maintenance around their trailers, cutting grass and generally tidying up the area. Then around 2pm it changed and the sky opened up and started looking half reasonable. Most privateers cba to rig, incl myself, so I grabbed a K13 and had a jolly with Anna Batik. Cloudbase was around 4500ft QNH and some of the thermals were a solid 4 up. Andrew stayed up the longest at around 3½hrs in the Junior.
Sunday started much better, small cu and lighter northerly winds. Small Cu soon disappeared and for a couple of hours around mid day it was quite tedious and difficult to stay airborne using the small broken thermals and limited ridge lift. But at about 2pm this very large area of Cu slowly moved down from mid Wales and then it was just fantastic. Cloudbase at 5500ft QNH and the sky looking brilliant between the club up past Newbridge on wye to the north and from Sennybridge in the West to Shobdon in the East. Outside that area as Martin Langford commented "it looked like you'd fall off the end of the world" - nothing just a blue hazy sky. Very strange - any ideas?
A whole flock (approx 30-40) paragliders were on the Builth Wells ridge and then a further 30 odd scattered at varying stages all the way down to Pen y Fan and beyond.
And then after about 2hrs the sky just died and we were left with the residue of the cu just spreading out across the area.
Rockpolishers weekend at Talgarth - 29/30 June 2010
Saturday was a washout without even some local flying to relieve the boredom, even some of the teams decided not to arrive until Sunday. However, this allowed a small, but beautifully formed, throng to enjoy the BBQ in the hangar on Saturday evening.
Sunday dawned bright and clear with a brisk North Westerly wind, an interesting looking sky and a wind profile suggesting wave. Mike Tomlinson was our Met man and Task Setter (as well as our Pundit in the K21) and the conditions made task setting for visitors a bit of a challenge. However, Mike came up with a 96k task for the Pundits and Intermediates - BRE, BUI and SAR while for the Novices we had BRE, BUI and HYE giving 80k. The decision was made at briefing not to impose a maximum start height which allowed pilots to exploit the wave - which many of them promptly did with height gains of over 10,000ft. With co-operating weather, an enthusiastic tuggie (thanks Tony) and a well organised team at the launch point (thanks to Julie King and Martin Brock) the whole competition grid of 13 pilots was launched in 1hr 10min.
It seemed we had only just got our breath back from launching when a 5 minute call was heard, so Sue and I went off to start the scoring process in the briefing room. First back was Phil King – Shobdon Pundit, with a speed of 107kph. I was beginning wonder if we had underset the task when the first phone call came in for a landout, so perhaps the task was challenging after all. As the afternoon went on and the loggers came in, there were mixed reports of blistering speeds and of great struggles. Come the end there were 2 successful landouts, 9 completed tasks and 3 aborted tasks.
The full results will appear on the website in due course, but in summary Nympsfield won the weekend with 13 points, in joint 2nd were Talgarth, Long Mynd and Usk with 8 points and Shobdon were 5th with 7 points.
The flight of the day must belong to Pete Bagnall from Nympsfield flying a Discus. Because Nympsfield were short of a Pundit, they asked if Pete could go round twice and nominated the first circuit as Intermediate and the second circuit as Pundit. As it was pre-declared and in the spirit of Rockpolishers we agreed to the request. Sorting out the ensuing logger trace was a challenge for me but it showed that Pete had gone round at 108kph and then again at 111kph!
Once again, our visitors have gone away with happy memories of Talgarth and a great impression of what we have to offer. For a small club like ours, it is a big event to host Rockpolishers and the work falls on the same small band each time. So, once again a huge thanks to everyone that made it all happen.
Monday 17 May 2010
Monday arrived with too much cloud for an early start on a big task. After much studying of forecasts and the XC
Suggestion book the decision was made to try TAL, TEW, LUD, TAL (182k). Martin Pingle and myself made it around
and Robbie and Gerry went for the Talgarth Triangle, Robbie doing it twice for good measure.
Sunday 16 May 2010
Talgarth XC weekend
Sunday arrived gray and cloudy, RASP was indicating a 2/3 hour period of thermals late in the day but the Sat24 pictures
showed persistent cloud cover. Tasks were set TAL, BRE, SAR,TAL (77K) and TAL, BSW, SAR, TAL (97k). Sure enough, about
4.00pm the clearance arrived to give a beautiful end to the day. There were 9 launches but no one completed a set task although
there were several runs around the new 21k training triangle from the XC Suggestion folder. The forecast for Monday was looking
promising and those of us able to stay until then went to bed thinking of 300k tasks for the morrow.
Saturday 15 May 2010
Talgarth XC weekend
Saturday was a flying day under the direction of our CFI, a small task of TAL, BRE,PRE,TAL (91.6k) was set for the wooden / club gliders
and TAL, CRY, LEO, TAL (145.8k) was set for the glass ships. The cunning part was that pilots could elect to go further and increase their
score once they had reached the second turn point. Pilots also had the option of doing the task in reverse order, in which case the
distance option applied to the first turn point. Are you all still with me? The scores will appear on the website in due course but for now
the honours went to Mike Tomlinson and Jill Banks in the K21 on the small task and to Gerry Martin on the big task. Gerry took the option
of flying on from Leominster to Ludlow to increase his distance while Mike and Jill had the endurance of the day with a flight of over 5 hours.
Sunday 9 May 2010
After a really dismal Saturday which forced cancellation of the planned mass fly by members of the British legion,
Sunday was a very pleasant surprise. A brisk and bright NE wind set up some lovely lennies downwind
but in practice nobody contacted wave. Reasonable thermals to 4K above tempted a few to fly... Mike Rossiter in HUR pushed his
boat out a bit far and ended up in a field near Knighton while Phil Swallow in 475 had a close look at Llangorse Lake
and eventually landed nearby. All safe though and no problems.
Monday 3 May 2010
Moderate/strong NNE wind and cold. Some great cloud streets at 9.30am so everyone thought it would over develop, but it didn't and in fact it got better and better as the day progressed.
Ralph had introduced a task to get us to think less locally TAL-CRAY-ABERGAVENNY-SOMEWHERE ELSE OF YOUR CHOICE-TAL and just for a bit of fun.
Not sure who completed it besides Ralph who used Madeley as "somewhere else" but I did it via Hay on Wye, Robbie, Mike T and John C got further west down to Castell Cerrig Cennen. Geoff did Cray and then Llandrindod and squeaked back to land at TAL after a butt clenching final glide!!!
The thermals were strong, some 6 averages, and bases rose to an amazing 6500ft amsl out west. wind was straight into the Beacons and so staying up was not a problem. Landings were "fun" on the east approach in a 90 degree cross wind...
All in all a great day.
Sunday 4 April 2010
Thermal and wave to 10K
So to cut to the chase today's flying - well sorry but if you weren't there I'm afraid you missed a good FULL day of flying
from before 11am right thro to dusk. Wave to 10k and some stonking thermals below to everyone satisfied.
Far too many out to remember but you'll recognise who was there coz they'll have a smile across their face
like a cheshire cat for the next week or so. I've put a few photos up to give you an idea of the fun we all had.
Ahh now where's that cold beer!
Sunday 14 March 2010
NW ridge and wave
good NNW blow and, despite forecast indications to the contrary it turned out to be waving, even if it was a bit elusive at times. 15+ launches in total with a max height of 11,626ft (by me) over Brecon. Landings over the gate proved to be quite a handful in the turbulence but everyone handled it well and so there were no mishaps. Well done to Tony for managing to get the tug down safely on the SW runway in a massive crosswind and a bag full of turbulence each and every time.
Saturday 13 March 2010
light NW ridge and thermal
lots out and too many to remember but all had some fun in light NW using a combination of ridge and thermals mixing it safely with paragliders and hanggliders that had taken off on the Hay Bluff ridge. Great day out for all with 24 launches in total.
Tuesday 9 March 2010
Fourth consecutive day of East wave
Only John Poland turned up today so we had the K21 all to ourselves! Don Gosden dropped us on to Troed and we beat the ridge for a while in bright cold NE winds. A single red kite seemed to take great interest in us and after 10 minutes decided to make a very close pass at us. This is the first time I have ever seen such aggressive interest from a kite ... and they are quite large when they pass a few feet in front of you!!!
Monday 8 March 2010
E wave to 10000 ft QFE
Monday was cold and clear with a 10-15kt easterly forecast and with no students to fly it was a single seat day - over 11hrs in total in 6 launches.
Sunday 7 March 2010
E wave to 9000 QNH
A cold bright start with little wind when we were expecting 20knt E was still looking good for thermal if not for wave. Gliders rigging before briefing is always a good sign.... Briefing suggested that easterly wave in the Cwmdu Valley would be the dominant feature of the day, despite lighter winds than some expected. And the briefing proved quite correct.
Wave was easily contactable from a 2000 aerotow and was fairly widespread with no nasty rotor on the aerotow or in the circuit as often happens. Quite a few private gliders out, launching on the NE runway. Very cold, but most gliders staying up 2 -3 hours to make the most of it.
A cloudless day after late morning, with a clearly visible inversion. Most gliders were achieving about 6000 QNH, pundits managing quite a bit higher, just under 9000 QNH I think.
Saturday 6 March 2010
NE ridge and wave
Saturday saw light NE with Mynydd Troed working for most of the day. A number of launches with showers (of snow) coming through due to the close proximity of the front. Later weak wave set up to 5500 QNH with beautiful cloudscapes as the sun lit the oragraphic over the main ridges. COLD!!
A slow start to the day as the forecast sunshine and weak thermals didn't turn up, and we were treated to a light north-easterly wind and 7/8 cloud at about 1800'. Gordon Dennis took the K6 onto Mynydd Troed and found it to be working well with the occasional thermal under the clag.
Monday 1 March 2010
St David's Day - and first day of our 7/7 operation
Spring has arrived - Very light West wind but some very good thermals with 3kts on averager on quite a few occasions. Only did "local" soaring but great to do some thermalling rather than ridge flying. thermals started around 11.30am and kept going until around 4.15pm by which time the cloudbase had increased in height to around 4,500 amsl.
Wednesday 10 February 2010
We had a good turn out of 11 pilots plus John C tugging. Wind was oscillating
between 15-40º around 20kts at 3000ft amsl and with a temperature of minus 6ºC,
at that height, heated insoles or socks were a definite advantage!
Saturday 6 February 2010
Unexpected wave to FL63
Low cloud shrouded the top of the hill until around 12:00 when launching commented. The surface wind was 30 degrees at 10 kts, but the sky showed no signs of wave. Jill Banks and I took a tow in K13 with a flight plan drop onto Myndd Troed for a bit of ridge soaring. Whilst on tow a suspiciously high rate of climb indicated wave. So we released and turned onto a reciprocal track - to find nothing. Searching around overhead the burnt patch we spotted lenticulars in the far distance and then vertical movement in a small nearby cloud. Moving over towards it we were rewarded with a 2 knot climb in silky smooth air to FL63 where the wave reached an unstable layer. We flew for 2h 46m exploring the wave and soaking up brilliant views of the clouscape. We were later joined by Mike Stringer in the club Pirat and Rhona and Mike in T10. It's always nice when flying conditions exceed expectations.
Saturday 30 January 2010
NW ridge and thermal
With visitors from Mendip, Dunstable, Bicester and Tibbenham it was a very busy but enjoyable day. A lighter than forecast wind of 10kt North Westerly kept the ridge to Hay Bluff working all day. I’m not aware of any wave contact, but there was the occasional thermal. 38 launches kept G-AZPA busy all day. Thanks also to everyone who kept the launch point well organised. I overheard several comments from visitors to the effect of what a great club this is. The briefing room, the condition of the field, glider recovery, launch point organisation were all mentioned - indeed, what a great club we have. The day ended with the second of our winter lectures given by John Scott, the topic of Airspace and Altimetry was well attended and the online link up is working extremely well.
Friday 8 January 2010
Why the airfield is closed this weekend,,,,!
Sunday 3 January 2010
The predicted East Wave arrived and allowed many members to soar to 5500ft QNH in the Cymdu Valley. Unusually, the wave was very rough almost everywhere but again with spectacular views. Tony Crowden proved a point by contacting it from only 800ft above the airfield.
I will post some photos on the forum later today.
What a great start to 2010! Happy new Year to all.
Rough air it certainly was,and quite a handful on tow at times. The best rate of climb seemed to be over the gate of the airfield with > 10KTS on the vario on demand nearly all afternoon. A simple sum reveals this to be approximately 150 horsepower when applied to a 800 pound total weight glider. Attempting to briefly descend in a spiral dive with full airbrake in the open cirrus at 70kt. resulted in climbing at 3kt. Amazing.
Smoother conditions south of mynydd troed alowed time to recover composure and to enjoy the stunning views over the snowy (black) mountains and beyond.
Another classic Talgarth day and i managed to stick out the coldness for over 3 hours using my electrically heated insoles.
Saturday 2 January 2010
A light W breeze which made the main bowl work with some wave over the top to take several members and visitors to around 5,000ft QFE. Spectacular views everywhere.
Friday 1 January 2010 -
Happy New Year to all our readers.
What a glorious start to the year, 17 launches, mostly toboggan rides from 3000ft. But, covered with snow and lit by the sun, the views were fantastic. Too many people out to mention individually but thanks to Martin Brock and Tony C for the tows, Chris Mann for being Number 2 instructor and everyone that helped at the launch point. Highlight of the day was Phil Abbot going solo at the end of the day - well done. Good to see Jill Banks soloing and enjoying the day following her eventful trip to the field from 400yd away. A special mention to all that braved the cold and took a launch in Snoopy - madness!
New Years Day .... several hardy souls out to play on a beautiful frosty airfield to clear away the cobwebs from the night before. Mostly sledge rides apart from a couple of 30/40 minute scrapes on the NW ridge. In keeping with tradition, Snoopy flew several times! Brrrrr!
Updated: 25 November 2010 MF