Black Mountains Gliding Club
BMGC Flying Reports
Wednesday 28 December 2011
Wave to FL54
At last a good sunny day with a strong SW wind blowing. The field has dried out quite nicely and there was plenty of ridge and some wave. Best ht of the day were Geoff Stinchcombe and Robin Howorth flying T10 who got to FL54. Wind at ht was 40kts+ so all in all quite an interesting day.
Saturday 3 December 2011
Wave to 9K
A great day for all at Talgarth.
Friday 2 December 2011
Ridge and wave
West ridges were working with a bit of weak low level wave but cloud was a problem as it drifted in and out around the ridges.
All in all a day worth calling.
Sunday 27 November 2011
Ridge and wave to 12K
Fantastic club turnout plus a few visitors who all had a great day playing on the ridges and in the wave.
Friday 25 November 2011
Wave to 5K in strong and turbulent SW wind
Day started well enough, clear blue skies and what appeared to be a light/mod SW wind but as soon as we got out of the shelter of the airfield it became apparent that the wind was stronger than we first thought, and quite rough with it.
Wednesday 23 November 2011
Low cloud, showers, turbulence and tall tales.... but we all flew
Optimism was high - or perhaps it was enthusiasm to fly! Daylight saw a southwesterly flow with low cloud just on the ridge, occasionally filling the bowls with milky, frothing cloud; it looked turbulent and later when the clouds had lifted well clear of the ridge tops, we discovered it was! Though the wind speed was not high, the first 2 sniffers came back after half an hour or so on the Spine, complaining of tumble driers. So we made tea and told tall tales while waiting for an expected clearance, which never came. However the cloudbase did lift sufficiently for a further 8 launches where we all got to stay current on the importance of maintaining a good airspeed near the hills. BMW had nearly an hour and a half and several others nearly made the hour, curtailed by judicious landings to avoid a rain shower. In fact there was no significant rain. All in all, not condition I would have deliberately set out to go flying in - yet here we are having had 10 launches with some safely-executed, challenging flying and we've kept ourselves current. The club is expected to be open tomorrow as we have a tow pilot on site and the weather is expected to be drier and sunnier. Call before you come though - if the weather is no good, he'll be going home early
OK not the best of days and definitely not as forecast, no surprises there I hear you say!
Sunday 13 November 2011
... unlucky for those who missed out today!
15kts SE gave us some sporting tows behind Tony Crowden in Papa Alpha into the
all too obvious wave (Lucky we ignored the briefing which stated that wave was
very unlikely today!.) Robbie pulled of at 1200ft above site demonstrating that
he cannot read an altimeter ... thought it was 2200! Managed to get away and it
was a smooth climb right up to FL110. Geoff King also made it to the same height
and several members contacted and got to over 5000ft above site. A lovely day.
Saturday 22 October 2011
Diamond height in the Beacons
The wind was 180/15 (and gusting a lot higher) and occasionally quite turbulent on site which made for some interesting take-offs and some very character building SE approaches! The Southerly wave formed off the Beacons across the Cwm Du valley and the Llangorse Lake area but during the morning increasing cloud cover forced several pilots to return to site. Later on it opened up again and launching restarted allowing a few more wave flights. I managed to get a pre 10am tow (thanks Geoff) before conditions deteriorated.
I've been asked by about half a dozen people to put a how-I-dun-it in the flying report so for those of you aren't interested please look away now:-
The forecast for wave was good – warm sector – straight isobars close together – the low pressure system not too close – reasonably dry air mass - Skew-T diagram showing a low level inversion and winds steadily increasing with height all in the same direction.
Thursday 20 October 2011
WSW ridge flying after a cloudy start
A slow start with almost no wind on the airfield, Bo eventually found some weak wave over Llangorse
during a trial lesson flight around lunchtime.... This encouraged the Southdown visitors Rod and John to
have a final bash on their last day in the Talgarth K21, after which the wind picked up enough to encourage some
private glider rigging! The wind being fairly light and WSW, the main bowl, and the South bowl were working and the Cwmdu valley run was
also working but it was not easy going. For the few who ventured down the Cwmdu valley it was
certainly possible to get down to the scree slopes at Crickhowell and back at around 1800
feet QFE with careful flying and local knowledge!
Wednesday 19 October 2011
a cloudy start but steadily improving during the day, and the wind more round to the NW, we
were able to use the NW ridge as far as Hay Bluff. There were hints of wave all the time,
some pilots may have made use of this.
Tuesday 18 October 2011
Wave to 6000, plus ridge + thermal
Today's photos are from Robbie Robertson - stills taken from his wingtip Muvi HD video camera
The day was made up of 19 launches including training flights, trial lessons and private flying for local and visiting pilots.
Just over 43 hours were flown in 19
flights. An outstanding day.
Friday 7 October 2011
Wave to FL120
The airmass was very unstable with a lot of showers going through. The wind at ridge top height was about 290/20 with 6/8 cloud coming down to about 1800' above site at times. Every time the wave set up a large line of wet cu would come in and kill it. A couple of visitors got a little ambitious exploring for wave in the valley and landed out near Hay Common. Eventually the air mass dried out allowing the wave to establish itself properly. The best height of the day was FL120 from a climb in front of Pen-Y-Fan.
Flight report (taken from National Ladder comments)
Couldn t get away from the main ridge or from Llangorse lake due to lines of heavy cu coming in and killing the wave so I tried the Beacons. The Beacons were a little rough as the wind was too Westerly for comfort. I contacted after a ridge climb off Pen-Y-Fan and milked it all the way up to FL120. It wasn t straight forward low down as the wave bars were shifting around a lot and the 6/8 cu was reaching 6k+. Eventually I got above the cloud tops which made it a lot easier. Wind at height was 290/50.
Monday 3 October 2011
SW Wave to FL105
A brisk SSW wind gave us a sporting tow and approach but rewarded us with wave over Llangorse that had visitors from Parham, Oxford and Cranwell (though very few Talgarth members) bumping their heads against airway N864 yet again. Best heights were around FL105 found a bit further afield. The afternoon was cut short by encroaching and descending cloud cover, but a good time was had by all, except possibly the crew who retrieved a visiting pilot from Nympsfield which didn't have our cloud - best distance of the day!
Saturday 1 October 2011
S Wave to 7500
Very few if any clubs can claim to get wave in all wind directions
and that is where BMGC excels. Saturday was no exception.
It was yet another bright, hot day but with little wind at ground level we did not expect too much.
Had site check with Robbie Robertson in the morning and was on finals when we got 8 kts up in rotor, climed to 2000 ft agl and then contacted wave over Llangorse Lake. Got back, rigged and took a flight up to 9,000 amsl. Good vis and views of Cargigan Bay (I think). The Brecons looked particularly good in the low sun, with the remains of the radiation fog in the valleys. Some day I'll get Gold height, but meantime I will settle for the views!
Wednesday 28 September 2011
11 gliders reach FL100 in SE wave (reports from visiting pilots taken from National Ladder comments)
Excellent late afternoon flight from Talgarth, one of some 11 flight over FL100 that day in South Easterly wave. Initial tow to the North West of Llangorse, climbed in wave to about 5000 before heading west toward Brecon for some nice consistant climbs ranging between 1-4 knots and some spectacular views of the Beacons. Very enjoyable flight.
Southerly wave at Talgarth. I've now flown in wave at Talgarth from all wind directions. What a great place and only 3 hours from home
Gold height in southerly wave from the Brecons on the annual London Gliding Club expedition to BMGC Talgarth. One of three height claims by London Gliding Club pilots at Talgarth that day. Probably more than a dozen pilots flew to around FL100 West of Brecon that day.
Most (all?) LGC pilots on our annual visit reached 10,000, 2 golds + 1 silver. So far every day bar one has given wave, (& the other was soarable but 'soft')
SSE Wave in the lee of the Brecons. Superb scenery and a bar from Llangorse lake to the far side of Sennybridge. Had to come back as the sun was setting.
Sunday 18 September 2011
Wet. One of those days when, by standing on the shale parking area adjacent to the clubhouse, you could create a new puddle as the water rose up from the ground - rather like the effect you get walking on a beach a low tide! However, the optimistic members, visitors and trial students who did show up were rewarded by several flyable hours, including hooting ridge lift, from 14.00. The viz was remarkably good and, with the sun relatively low in the sky, the light across the tops of the Black Mountains was stunning. The task for the day - dodging the showers, some heavy and wide but all predictable.
Sunday 24 July 2011
Mad rush to get in air by 11am as tug was promised to Usk for Rockpolishers. Needn't have bothered as air was very ordinary with cloudbase only 2k ft off the field. Nevertheless some had a good time - Dewi in the Junior showed us all the way and then Emily with Tony had a great time racing around the ridges.
Saturday 23 July 2011
Thermals and wave
This saturday we may have the best day for wales flying for a long time,as MP and I wandererd past Builth Wells between strong thermals,
a wave found us tis a strange and good place we fly
it was the best day I've had this year but it took us all a bit by surprise, no tasks set and everyone flying a bit conservatively as it was expected to o/d and spread out . Also we had to get off early, before 11am, coz the tug was promised down at Usk for Rock Polishers but it wasn't a problem as the thermals were working from early.
Thursday 14 July 2011
Strong thermals to 6500
Started to go well at around lunchtime then went atomic in the afternoon. Cloud base went up to over 6,500' amsl. The thermals were strong and consistent with the occasional 8-10 knotter thrown in just for good measure. The pessimistic forecast over development didn't happen and the cumulus stayed at about 4/8 for most of the afternoon with it slowly going blue in the early evening.
You know the old saying... "It was one of those days were you had to bolt the hangar door down otherwise it would have taken off and done 300k on its own."
Wednesday 13 July 2011
Grey start to the day but thermals gradually built thro the day with base reaching 3500ft above site. Not an easy day as there was a lot of spreadout and thermals were not where you would expect (As Bo found out!) Friendly farmer, good field and lots of help made for an easy retrieve. Thanks for the wine Bo!
Sunday 3 July 2011
Clash of the Titans - a flying visit?
Lovely day at the club, no wind, warm - how strange for Talgarth!!
Saturday 25 June 2011
Late evening wave
Grey all day but definite signs of wave above the murk which was right down on the hill. After the committee meeting was well under way in the evening, a wave gap was quite obvious towards Llangorse and Bo kindly offered to tow me in 464 to the SW. Took off around 1830 hrs amd released at 1700ft south of Llangorse lake in a wave gap. Climbed to 3500ft above site and went east towards Abergavenny. Was it pretty!!!!!
Tuesday 7 June 2011
I stood in as Instructor for Bo today who had to be off site.
Saturday 4 June 2011
East wave was there again but, with a lot of cloud cover, it proved quite tricky to contact and a heavy rain shower in the afternoon encouraged most to derig. However, about 1700hrs, the rain stopped and it was clear that good wave was still around so Tony Crowden/Phil Abbot in EGZ and myself in 464 launched and were soon well established. Very rough with 10up/10down close together but I explored down to Crickhowell where it was much smoother with lots of lennies showning me where to go. Had to land at 1900hrs to have free bear at Doc Saundby's excellent BBQ to celebrate his 60 years in gliding.
Friday 3 June 2011
East wave to 10K / Thermals to 4K
Signs of east wave were visible from first thing with the cloud drift and the windsock telling opposite stories! Visibility was fabulous and many people contacted the wave either directly from Troed or via thermals which were booming up to 4000ft above site. Best height of the day was Martin Brockington who reached 10,000ft before pulling the brakes. Delightful to fly right round the cumulus clouds that were punching through into the wave.
Friday 27 May 2011
Only the second flyable day of the XC week so a bit disappointing but it is the UK so why are we always so surprised that the weather messes us around? Anyway to cut a very long story short the tasks was TAL-BRE-PRE-TAL (90km)for novices and TAL-BSW-WAL-TAL (130km)for pundits. Day started with moderate WNW and 8/8th cover so off we went at 11.30am lobbing onto the ridge in anticipation of the forecast wave. Early afternoon and the cloud started to break up and some fairly good thermals got going, although they were found to be quite unreliable at times. A bit later the forecast wave kicked in and some of us got to around 7000ft QNH over Hay and the Painscastle area before it collapsed and left us with moderate thermals and ridge lift to around 4-4500ft QNH.
I think that only 2 completed the pundit task, John C in his Nimbus C and Jamie Sage in the DG1000. Stuart landed at Shobdon and managed to arrange a tow back out.
Most others completed part of the task but abandoned the final legs out to Presteigne or Walford (no not the one in Eastenders!!) and just enjoyed the conditions around the Beacons, The Black Mountains and north towards Builth which were still going at 7.30pm when the last one landed (me).
All in all a great day, despite the fact that the task wasn't taken seriously by a lot of us - but that's the relaxed way we like it at TAL.
Wednesday 25 May
At last some decent conditions for the cross-country week. It was a breezy west wind day with some very strong thermals and sink to match. People flew Bidford O/R, the Talgarth Triangle and various other cross countries. And of course some good ridge flying was also available.
Saturday 30 April
It was blustery NE wind day with the Pandy run and other NE facing slopes working well and wave between 6 and 7k near the airfield. Not the great heights of Friday, but all good fun.
Thanks to our instructors today for looking after everybody on a day which could be described as 'not one for widows and orphans'. Also to Don for towing in such tricky conditions. Good character building stuff for all.
Monday 25 April
So there I was in the office "again" when all of a sudden it started kicking off and turning out to be a better day than I originally thought. An hour or so later I had driven to the club and was in air. All the others had already gone off on a task that was probably too late for me to start. So I decided to go "round the block" - Bluff, Abergavenny, Brecon SW and back before the forecast spreadout developed. Not a difficult flight but had that feeling you could find yourself on the deck very quickly if you made a wrong move so tried to stay as high as possible, which generally worked.
Not an easy day with several low points, glad of the ridges at times.
Saturday 16 April
Just over 5 hours in my glider today to blow out the winter cobwebs . Conditions were quite average but pleasant and soarable. It was overdeveloped much of the day. However it was surprising how well the thermals kept going even without direct sunlight on the ground. Maybe because the ground is so dry, especially for Spring. Some average climbs of up to 3 knots in places and a cloud base of 4,500 QNH at best. Greville was out flying his DG and Andrew Richards took the club's Pirat for a spin around Brecon and the Wye Valley. A Nice fun day out. Thanks to Don for the tows.
Tuesday 12 April
Talgarth pilots go xc!!
mmm......how best to express this delicately for those not able to make it into the air today.
Wednesday 6 April
SW wave to 17000
Typical good Talgarth wave day. All the lennies disappeared just before we started to launch at 10:30, (I did say it was typical!), leaving high thin cirrus, hazy sunshine and no indication where the wave was situated. The wind on the ground was about 10kts SW. The rotor low down was quite strong at times and occasionally cut off the hill lift around the South Bowl. The Booker exped and several locals all enjoyed good wave flights. The best height of the day was 16,917'. See BGA Height Ladder for details. Thanks to "Boris" aka Pete Marshall who provided all the tows using the Booker tug as G-AZPA is again u/s.
Tony's comments from his National Ladder entry
I did the initial climb at the North end of the Cwm Du Valley then went over to the lee of Pen-y-Fan for the remainder of the flight. With no clouds the views of the Severn Estuary and the whole of the Welsh coast up as far as Snowdonia were spectacular. The last 8,000 of the climb took two and a half-hours which works out at an average climb rate of about half a knot!. It just goes to show what sheer bloody-minded determination can do. Finally I would like to thank my wife Anne for the loan of her glider.
Saturday 2 April
Classic ridge, wave and thermal day
We had a real 'Talgarth' day yesterday. Hill soaring from Hay Bluff to the scree slope at the end of the Cwm Du valley, stong thermals to 4,000' and wave to FL75 (at least that's the best height I heard about). All enjoyed by lots of members and visitors from Booker
Quite difficult get into the wave low down as it was very weak ,broken and working in a very small area. At about 6,500 it suddenly developed into a consistent 2-3 knot climb. Unfortunately it was also under the base of the N864 airway so I had to break off the climb at FL75. I explored the area to the West away from the airway but couldn t find anything so I gave up.
Sunday 20 March
A poor forecast tuned out to be wrong and several two seater flights were made soaring the South Bowl.
Saturday 19 March
4kt thermals to 4500>
First day of the club working weekend but many of us still had some great flying with 4kt climbs to around 4.5K and some cross country flying to boot. Too many out playing to name but good to see our new instructor Andy Sutton out airing Snoopy.
Friday 18 March
6kt thermals to 6000QNH
Despite not being a "called flying day", Martin Pingle turned up after lunch, rigged and flew EBF. Spurred on by his calls of 6000ft QNH cloudbase and 6kt thermals, I downed tools, rigged and flew 464 just to prove he was lying! He was'nt! We both flew for 2-3 hours in superb conditions with a genuine 6K cloudbase and super vis. Black Hill was working as well making it a great day. I had a slight scare at 5000ft above site on the other side of Llandrindod Wells when the cockpit suddenly filled with a horrible smell of burning .. but it was just the smoke from a hill fire immediately upwind. Phew!
Sunday 13 March
WNW - ridge and thermal
It was a cracking day with light W/NW winds on the ridges plus 6 kt thermals to 4500QNH and visibility to die for. Lots of us out playing inc Mike Rossiter, Alan Cridge, the Snoopy team, John Horley, and many others. John Clark did a sterling job in the back of the two seater.
Best day of the year so far and you missed it! (At least, some of you did!)
I nearly missed out on it too as i first thought that with so much low pressure nearby it would be duff , but then realised it would likely provide enough instability , coupled with the early passage of the cold front to likely give a good afternoon .Luckily it did and really got thermic at 15.40 onward.
Post cold front had to be worth rigging for. launching in the Club Libelle FYG at around 12:30 into improving conditions with excellent visibility, the lift on the NW ridge down to Hay Bluff was reliable with occasional thermals, getting better as the day wore on. Landing at 14.35 I'd had a great flight up to 3000 in thermals but the conditions improved after that as the thermals improved in strength and height. As Robbie says the best day of the year so far, and only a few taking advantage....
Tuesday 8 March
Wave to 6K
Our day started soft, but thermals at miday& the sw ridge a little later, gave some
fun,Brocky had the only wave to 6K in the late afternoon,he stopped the climb as 3hours of soaring gave him cold feet.
Thursday 24 February
Web cams are a wonderful thing! - I was in work and casually clicked on the club web cam and saw people rigging!!! within the hour I had got to site, rigged and was on the ridge and then magically climbing in wave over the top of the low orographic cloud that shrouded the tops of the hills. - Went around a few turnpoints whilst cruising about (no task). There was total cloud cover over Pen y fan in the Beacons but enough gaps further east for safe flying. Ah now that's got rid of some of the winter blues.
Updated: 28 Dec 2011 MF