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First day of course is wet---time to review weekend activities 13 July

Its just amazing what people get up to in their leisure time. Here is Gill taking part in a production car trial.

The weather for the course was very wet and low cloud and strongish winds Welcome to Doug and Tom Heller and David Hart.So its into the classroom for briefings, followed by a tutorial on the equipment. Doug and Tom have had some gliding training in the past but never quite managed to go solo, Doug a medical consultant from Darwin Australia returns home on Friday. David has joined as a member.

The remaining buggy has developed a drive belt fault, so Gill has been on the case organising the return of Bug one sporting new knobbly tyres and getting the defective one off for servicing.

looking through the misted window we could see the small team fitting the doors to the new hangar. One very wet Chris power came in saying " oh well just 32 more to go!"

Dave Breeze sorted out the simulator, reprogrammed by some kind soul, and David hart discovered how to aerotow.

Did anyone see the high performance glider display last Friday? (picture below)

1 a.m. 10th July 2015

The scene at one in the morning in a field somewhere north of Ludlow. The Turner DG500 outfit got back to Aston Down at 3.30 a.m.

What was the date yesterday?

Don, I was initially confused. Yesterday was the 9th not the 8th !
There were indeed several long flights yesterday by private owners, making it one the longest distances in aggregate from Aston Down, competitions apart. Of the 750km attempts Philip Walker did 690km in the ASH31M, Doug Gardiner 682 in the LS3, Andy Smith (ASW28) apparently around 600. The shorter task declarations resulted in Mike Oliver (ASW20) 524, Mike Weston (Ventus 2C) 364, John McWilliam (Ventus C) 310 and the Duo Discus with Chris Swann and myself on board some 442km out of a declared 583km. Others did various distances, at present unknown, including Graham Turner (DG500).
Hopefully the beginning of another spell of good cross country weather?

A fantastic day---8 July oops 9 July

Visibility about 40K.winds 290/05 and thermals rising to 5000ft.

As you might expect, a busy day at the launch point. Tasks set to all 4 directions, and pilots programming and reprogramming their tasks. Many thanks to those who took time out to help at the launchpoint, that was much appreciated.

A rather nice helicopter brought a passenger in from London. Class D airspace around Kemble grounded us for an hour at lunchtime, so time for a cuppa and brief for the afternoon activities.

Several landouts, the dart at Rissington, the DG500 at Ludlow, the LS3 at Bicester and an SF27 at the Park. Some very credible flights fl;own today.

The course enjoyed many hours of soaring before the Scouts arrived in the evening for air experience flights.

The evening BBQ was an adventure itself when we were entertained by David trying to put the fire out!!

Club day, Wednesday 8 July

What will the wind direction be?, Very difficult to predict with a complex weather system and wave around. The 1000 ft winds forecast to be 310/25, and blustery at times.

Initially we had light SW winds which strengthened during the day to give fresh westerlies.

We did get some flying done and John McWilliam managed to join the Nympsfield guys in the wave. Well if you do have an engine why not use it?

Flying stopped early to comply with the temporary airspace restrictions around Kemble. So it was in to the classroom and an introduction to the 1:500000 chart and a briefing on winch launching.

Should be a good day tomorrow, and a BBQ planned for the evening.

Windy it may be but student Dan arrives to help 7 July

The 2nd day of the course and winds are forecast 260/25 with showers of rain.

Some very broken thermals to around 3000ft QFE.

The field was set up on runway 21, but very soon the winds freshened and we were forced to move to 27. The picture may not look windy but Dave Breeze is carefully holding the canopies to prevent damage.

Meanwhile the first of the University students appeared for the development week to find himself "launch controller for the day---many thanks Dan.

The evening group took over around 6pm and set about doing a few launches before packing in, the evening talks were on launch failures and tephigrams---strange mix but created some interesting question.

looking forward to another breezy day tomorrow.

Rain forecast, but the course goes on. 6 July

A new course started today. With threats of torrential rain and winds of 190/20 we started flying to see what we could get done.

Colin Stringer an ex PPL, Mike Counsell a CGC ab-initio member from 8 years ago and Stewart Rathband (virtual novice) all learnt the ground skills from Tom and Dave. With some slick handling we managed to get 20 launches in between the rain showers.

The class room work included Threat and Error Management and Circuit Planning.

Fingers crossed for tomorrow.

It all started with a missing dipstick 3 July

Light easterly winds, 20K visibility, hot and thermals in the blue. A busy course, a whole bunch of enthusiastic visitors from Parham and a Piper Arrow bringing a prospective buyer for the PW6 and a borrowed tug from Nympsfield, meant we wanted to get going early.

The 2nd buggy was very low on oil because sone d*ps****k lost the dipstick and the oil had sprayed out. Never mind use the other buggy and make do, that is until the tyre went flat!
Thankfully a kind person sorted out replacement oil and swapped dipsticks so we were back in business.

Once we did get going we had a great day, the soaring was a little challenge but several respectable flights were made. The Parham DG505 was busy getting their Aerotow pilots refamiliarised with the winch.

The Leigh family departed around 3.30 to catch their flight to Hong Kong with promises of a return trip very soon. It was great to meet such a nice family.

Meanwhile the PW6 viewing seemed to go well, and the Piper Arrow departed mid afternoon.

Meanwhile Ian took the DG500 for a decent local soaring flight, and fell in love with it. Picture shows Ian with his new toy.

A few club members drifted in during the afternoon and enjoyed some instructional flights.

A wet day (but still fun) 2 July

A cold front sliding over from the South brought low cloud and modest SE winds.

With cloudbases around 600ft to start, the course members practiced short circuits and launch failure procedures. The cloudscapes were magnificent.

Steve Glasset was here to conduct a one day course, who didn't show up----I wonder why? Even Gerald was cowering in the dry.

Winchie Dave , ever the optimist , was convinced it would clear up---so we persevered.

The occasional breaks in drizzle and rain gave us sporadic flying opportunities. During one of these, we watched 5 trailers arrive as the Parham contingent arrived to spend a few days with us---and just managed to rig before it poured with rain.

With a BBQ planned and some temporary airspace around Kemble and a wet and cold crew, we braced to put the gliders away in a chilly and wet wind. Now everyone was thoroughly soaked and cold. Perhaps planning a BBQ wasnt so intelligent?

Half an hour later at around 5 30, the skies cleared and the first of the evening party arrived----Why did you put the planes away? we were asked. Oh well.

The BBQ went on as planned, with a robust debate about Chinese politics while the evening party flew in glorious evening sunshine, thats British weather for you.

1 July Mike Farmer joins the club

Temperatures forecast to be 28 degrees.Visibility reducing as the high pressure develops and winds forecast as 170/20 (at 1000 amsl), and blue thermals.

It was great to see our latest new member Mike Farmer here for the 8 am briefing and to help us unpack the hangar. Mike is pictured with "winchie Dave " as he masters towing with a buggy.

The course guys are all doing extremely well, now flying virtually unprompted as they learn circuit planning.

Roger Bagley did a great job keeping the club flying going single handed, well done Roger.

The evening finished with a briefing on stalling and a few beers in the bar. Mike even managed to spend some time with us in the briefing.

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