Sunday, 19 October 2014

Aboyne 2014 Week 2 Day 5

Thursday 16 October

DNF A cold wet day - ideal for tourism! Visits to Loch Muick and the local distillery. Patrick braved a cycle ride over the Glen Tanner estate.
David Griffiths produced a superb three course meal in the accomodation for the entire course which was appreciated and enjoyed by all.


Aboyne 2014 Week 2 Day 4

Wednesday 15 October

A wet morning eventually cleared into a bright afternoon and with the continuing absence of wind and everyone checked out for solo, Bob was on the lookout for his next student. Ryan Littlejohn, a local trainee, who is hopeful that he will be able to solo on his 14th birthday in early December was offered a flight in the DG which he eagerly accepted. Meanwhile, Patrick enjoyed a short unexpected 500' climb above the 2000' cloudbase - the high point of the afternoon!

Ryan and Bob prepare for take off


Aboyne 2014 Week 2 Day 3

Tueday 14 October

An overcast and calm day without soaring, resulted in our group being the only pilots who wanted to fly. A few more practice circuits, approaches and landings got the remainder of the group solo in these unusual calm conditions.


Aboyne 2104 Week 2 Day 2

Monday 13 October

The day started with an overcast sky and not a breathe of wind on the airfield - not ideal conditions for wave but perfect for honing the skill set required for solo flying in calm conditions. Michael Oakley and Geoff Martin made good use of SH9 during the morning. Then a trial lesson discovered and reported weak wave mid afternoon over Tarland. Roger W and Bob soon followed in the DG and explored the line running between Aboyne and Logie Coldstone. They were joined by Patrick Geraets with Merv in the K21 and David Griffiths in the Grob 102. Not to be left out, Tim Lean and Morag also appeared in a Puchacz to join in with the unexpected fun. The K21 set off to explore further upwind and promptly fell out of the lift but Mike Beaumont and Bob confirmed that it was still there until late.

Patrick looking east along the gap.

Aboyne 2014 Week 2 Day 1

Sunday 12 Oct

A promising collection of wave clouds greeted us on arrival at the airfield, but by the time the mandatory site briefing and preping the gliders had been completed the clouds had morphed into some fair weather cumulus.
The 4kt thermals were smooth and took us to the 4300' cloudbase and the gentle breeze effected some impressive streeting. We took the opportunity to fly all eight of the group on check/introductory flights with the requirement of landing on the runway and using the radio providing some new challenges for those new to Aboyne. The good thermal conditions disappeared towards the end of the afternoon as spreadout cut the sun off and Roger Williams with Merv was fortunate to stumble into some weak wave to end the day landing well after six while the others were propping up the Wave Bar in the clubhouse. Jim Duthie had the longest flight of the day with 2.75 hours in the discus.


Friday, 10 October 2014

Day 4 It was raining as everyone arrived at the airfield and a short wait while the clearance came through was spent sheltering in the hanger. Unfortunately we found two gliders and a drowned car had been put in the hanger after we had closed the doors. By the time we got into the air the thermal activity had disrupted weak wave and only the first glider had contacted it for a short while. However some good thermalling flights were to be had. Bill Vesty had nearly 2 hours in the DG1000 climbing in thermals up to 4500'. Winds were 225/5 going to south later in the day, even at 4000' the winds were  no stronger. One of our expedition succumbed to flu like symptoms and Mike Wild managed to blag a ride in an ASH25M to Portmoke and disappeared for the day, now he wont stop talking about it! Everyone flew in the thermic conditions during the day and as the heat of the sun faded by 1700hrs we all went in search of weak wave in the now southerly wind. Merv and Hilton Thatcher had some success to the south of the Lochs climbing from 3000' to over 4500'. John and Colin Simpson played in wavy thermals up to Loch Mick managing to arrest descent for a while. A lovely sunset followed
Day 5 An early start turned out to be a good move. The cars were frozen, the canopies were misting up so much we had to wait for the sun to play on them. Anyway we were first to launch and found an area of weak wave over the east of Morvan from 2000'. The wind was north-westerly at 10kts. slowly we climbed to 4500' and started to explore other areas. As we did the wind went slowly to the south-west and slowed to 4kts at which point we all fell down! However nearly 2hrs of soaring had been completed. A period of no wind or thermals followed with a shower over the airfield. Further flights in the 2 seaters started when the sun started to go down with high tows hoping to contact wave to the south. Not much was found but the visibility made for wonderful views. The end of a great week has arrived with everyone saying they will return. Good luck to the next week and thanks to a great team.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Aboyne 2014

Day 4 Arrived at the  Airfield with rain still falling and had to wait for it to clear. However we were launching after 1000hrs into thermals. Winds were very light 240/5kts initially backing to southerly later in the day. Mike Wild managed to blag a ride in an ASH25M with Ron Gardener and toured the highlands landing at Portmok before returning, alas he wont stop telling everyone about it ever since.
Hilton Thatcher and Merv had some good thermalling flights as did Bill Vesty with John Simmonds with best climbs to cloudbase at 4500'. Dave Paffett, Stuart Waldie, Colin Simpson and Kevin Woods shared the single seaters in the thermal conditions. The main hope for wave was late in the day when the thermals had died away. Both 2 seaters launched after 1730hrs and took tows to over 3000'. Merv and Hilton found some consistant lift in weak wave while Colin and John Ranged over a wide area making contact with briefer weak wave. A beautiful sunset followed.

Day 5 Very low cloud hung around most of the day restricting the flight to circuit practice. A better day looks in prospect tomorrow

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Aboyne 2014

Day2 & 3  Heavy rain and winds near gale force over the last two days have results in time to experience the delights of Scotland's tourist spots. Colin Simpson's cooking skills gave the team a Thai Chicken curry. Apparently all survived! Today the K21 received the attentions of an engineer or two and resulting in a fixed ailing radio and missing power on the Garmin GPS found. Thanks to all who helped Kevin Woods and Dave Paffett.
Talk about too many cooks!

Aboyne 2014

Day 1.
 All 4 gliders arrived on the Saturday safe and in good order, well done all volunteers! Everyone booked into the accommodation and feedback was it is excellent!
 We awoke on the Sunday morning to a spectacular sky full of wave, lenticular clouds everywhere! So waiting for the briefing and then rigging was only for the patient.
Once the DG1000 and the K21 were serviceable check flights commenced. The conditions were interesting with  southerly gusty winds at surface, at +4000'  210/32kts. The conditions in circuit could be described as 'Sporting'. Once on the equally lively tow, wave was contacted from about 2300' over the Lochs with 4-6kts climbs. With 8 pilots to fly on the first day lingering in the wave wasn't an option, so up to 7000' then breaking off to head back down, it's not easy you know!
Dave Paffett and Stuart Waldie were the first to take the Discus and the Grob 102 up. Colin Simpson and Kevin Wood were checked and cleared for solo. However almost as soon as the single seaters got airborne, the wave conditions started to change, Dave Paffett got to 9500ft before a precautionary descent was necessary. For a short while the circuit felt more like Heathrow! The  newbies Bill Vesty, Jon Bareford, Hilton Thatcher and Mike Wilde found themselves having to work hard just to stay up in broken undefined lift and then having their first experience of rough circuits at Aboyne followed by a 90 degree wind on approach, sometimes with a tail wind! Would they manage to 'hit' the runway? Could they stay on it? Could the Instructor recover it? All 8 flew and found the experience 'instructive'. Everyone enjoyed the day including the evening meal at the Commercial in Tarland.