The Soaring Diary

This Soaring Diary begins in July 2001
and ends in January 2002
The Soaring Diary was started in the mid-1990's  Click here to see a selection of  dates of previous volumes (they go back in time at least two years).   (The link will also tell you what this diary is all about).

Editor and publisher - Peter Kelly 

Click here to  jump to the bottom of this page - to see links to other pages


All info presented here may be reprinted/used, as long as proper acknowledgment is given.
Reports are provided by soaring enthusiasts and posted in reverse chronological order.

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End entry for

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Begin entry for Saturday Jan 5 2002

I've received a couple of acknowledgments of this new location, but only a couple!  How 'bout letting me know if you read this.  Send an email to me and tell me that you now have the new address for the Soaring Diary, and that you know my new email address at PeterKelly@dellepro.com .  I am annoyed by the ISP for selling out, but that's the business world.  Lots of work to get the soaring web pages relocated and back up again, but I'm working on it.

I created a web page at the old url address, so maybe more people will get the word on these changes.

End entry for Saturday Jan 5 2002

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Begin entry for Thursday Dec 28 2001

Another end of an era.  The Internet Service Provider (ISP) that I've been using for the past ten years has sold out. Community.net has been sold to Sonic.net.  Thus if you are reading this you already know about  the new location of the soaring diary, the weather pages, and all other related soaring pages.  Unfortunately, someone at sonic.net already was using "soaring", so I can't have that for the location of the home page.  Thus I will call it "gliding".    You can now visit this home page by typing in http://www.sonic.net/~gliding or you can use http://www.sonic.net/~pjkelly , either one will get you to these home pages.

It'll be a few weeks before I get all of the files and the links back up and running.

My email address is now PeterKelly@dellepro.com , so if you want to send me a note that you have read this page, I'd appreciate hearing from you.

I haven't had any flight reports, so I've nothing to share.

End entry for Thursday Dec 28 2001


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Begin entry for Saturday Dec 8 2001

Read on the "William's Live" page that Kenny is on a Lion Hunt - or hunt for some kind of pussy cats, in Africa.

Beautiful weather these last two days here in the USA.  Here's the wx in San Diego yesterday ( and yes, that's my christmas tie), and here's a shot of LAX airport from the left seat from overhead Santa Monica.  I guess you can tell I finally did buy a digital camera.  I love it.

End entry for Saturday Dec 8 2001

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Begin entry for  Tuesday Dec 4 2001

No other soaring reports.  We received a message from Milt via the TIP mailing list.  I responded to Milts cry for help.  I sent him the following reply message.  Thought I'd share it with you, since we might all benefit from it.

-------------------------------------------------------------
From: "pjkelly" <kell797@dellepro.com>
To: "milt" <milt@cpdevelopers.com>
Subject: Re: Any opinions for Tues Weather at William's?
Date: Tuesday, December 04, 2001 10:20 AM
To:  Recipients of the William's TIP,

Milt sent us this message yesterday. I consider this a "published" document,
since it was sent to everyone on the mailing list.  I'll add this to the
soaring diary as well.

We are indebted to Milt for his efforts in attempting to forecast the
soaring conditions, but I think he needs our help.  In fact he is asking for
it.  The last word on the message below...

>
> Help!
>
I'll try to give it a go here.  If you have any other suggestions, let him
have them.  I'll post them here on the Soaring Diary as well.

Peter.

/////
 

Dear Milt,

I just got in from an exhausting few days at work, so I won't be able to be
there today, but I did receive this note of yours.  Maybe I can be of some
help.  That is, maybe I can help you put this into perspective.

I think it is a very good idea to try to fly this time of the year.  I
recommend that everyone try to get out to the gliderport at least twice a
month in December and January.  Today is the 4th, and we only have 17 more
days and then, according to my calendar, the solstice will occur - on Dec
21st this year.  At that point the sun won't go any further south.  From
then on, the days will be getting longer.  The thing we need to do is be
ready.  Staying proficient, by visiting the gliderport at least twice per
month will help.  We should pick the best day, and try to get a long soaring
flight in, however, barring that, we should take a tow and keep our landing
currency.  If nothing else, it keeps the bird from getting rusty and
weathered from disuse, and it keeps the gliderport in operation.  An added
benefit is that by visiting the gliderport at this time of year, there is
more hangar talk.  We are not is such a hurry to get into the air that we
can't talk about flying techniques, traffic patterns, safety concerns, and
learn from some tall story telling.   And, that talking brings me back to a
real concern that I have about what's happening to you Milt. I'm concerned
about the feeling and body reactions you've been experiencing.

You say below....

>  My gut feeling is that with all this cold air
> and some sun, tomorrow ...
You seem to have internalized this process of soaring weather prediction.  I
think maybe you should spend more time with engineers and scientists.  Try
to stick with the facts.  Granted, Soaring is a highly emotional experience,
but weather is a matter of physics.  But maybe there is more to your "gut"
than I realize.

I see you are thinking that maybe the jet stream has a drinking problem.
You said...

> To top it off, the jet stream appears to be drunk - I don't think I've
seen
> one that looks like.....
There may be some psychosis involved here.  You do know that the jet stream
isn't a real person, don't you?  The reality of the jet stream is that it is
nothing more than a current of high speed wind that, by definition, meanders
near the tropopause.  I guess if I had a creative imagination, one could
attribute such meandering to the characteristic of being drunk, but the jet
stream doesn't drink, it's not human.  Maybe I could suggest you spend a bit
of time with glider pilot Mike Green.  He is a nuclear rocket scientist, but
at the same time he is in the theater.  Two contrasting disciplines that
closely relate to this subject.  In some of those Shakespeare plays the
actors talk to objects as if they were people.  Mike undoubtedly has a
unique perspective.  He knows physics, he knows actors, he knows people.
Mike may be able to resolve the issues of thinking the jet stream can be
drunk.

The one item in your message today that really alarmed me was the fact that
fact that you believe your body parts are now talking to each other -
actually having conversations.  You say....

> Okay, so a cold front just blasted through, freezing level is very very
low,
> and my gut is talking to my butt and telling it to get to the
gliderport...
Sure, we could say they talk to each other since the colon is the direct
connection, but that's not a pretty image.  They're certainly connected
through the central nervous system, but, direct communication?

As a concerned friend, I'd encourage you to only go to the glider port if it
is gong to be sunny. I think you should bring your lawn chair and a nice
blanket, hat and sunglasses, and set up facing south.  Let the sun warm your
bones.  Let it shine on your face.  Think pleasant thoughts about nature.
Imagine you are a red tail, spiraling upward towards cloud base.  If you get
a chill, imagine you are a golden eagle below the long cloud north of Snow
Mountain, wings spread out fully, cruising northbound, headed towards
Shasta.  Hear the wind whistling past you.  Enjoy the cold under the cloud.
Soon you'll be back in the valley, circling in the warm sun.

When the days become longer, the soaring conditions will improve.  Winter is
but a short time.  A short interruption to our soaring activities.  Take
advantage of this time.  Go out and take care of the chores of keeping the
ship looking good, and ready to fly.  Maintain your own proficiency by
taking a flight once per month, even if it will only be a flat glide back to
the pattern. When's the last time you boxed the wash?  Most importantly,
look forward to the coming season.

Milt, you'll be ok.  You just need to reset your gyros.  Take the lawn chair
to the gliderport.

Peter.

----- Original Message -----
From: "milt" <milt@cpdevelopers.com>
To: <williamstiplist@soaringnet.com>
Sent: Tuesday, December 04, 2001 12:14 AM
Subject: Any opinions for Tues Weather at William's?

> Hello fellow Williams TIP List users,
>
> I've just taken a hard look at the weather for tomorrow, and I can't
decide
> if it will be good or not.  My gut feeling is that with all this cold air
> and some sun, tomorrow will be great.  Our forecasting models don't really
> agree with that view, and I'm trying to make sense of it all...
>
> Today looked strong, but with fairly low cloudbases and plenty of showers.
> I'm hoping tomorrow will be similar, but with higher bases.  On the other
> hand, BLIPMAP says it will be downright poor (like 2,000 foot deep
boundary
> layer around William's), and MTWilTIP is saying lift to 6,000 and 9,000 in
> the hills.  Heating for tomorrow appears to be poor
> http://www.dr-jack.net/BLIPMAP/CANV/qswm2.21Z.gif, which would indicate
> cloud cover of some kind, and the forecast discussion does in fact mention
> increasing clouds...
>
> CENTRAL SACRAMENTO VALLEY-...UPDATE
> INCLUDING...CHICO...OROVILLE...MARYSVILLE...YUBA CITY
> 900 PM PST MON DEC 03 2001
>
> .TONIGHT...MOSTLY CLEAR AND COLD. PATCHY FROST LATE...MAINLY ALONG
> THE EAST SIDE OF THE VALLEY. LOWS IN THE 30S. NORTH WIND 5 TO 15 MPH.
> .TUESDAY...INCREASING CLOUDS. PATCHY MORNING FROST...MAINLY ALONG THE
> EAST SIDE OF THE VALLEY. HIGHS FROM THE LOWER TO MIDDLE 50S. LIGHT
> AND VARIABLE WIND.
>
> The Anthony Peak BLIP http://www.dr-jack.net/BLIP/AnthonyPeak.txt says it
> will not happen tomorrow (at 1pm there will be no boundary layer), and the
> William's BLIP it's about the same
http://www.dr-jack.net/BLIP/Williams.txt.
>
> The discussion sections are not super clear on what is supposed to happen
> around William's http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/afos/SFO/AFD/SFOAFDMTR (SFO Bay
Area
> and general area)
> http://www-atm.ucdavis.edu/~wxauto/fos/fxus/FXUS66.KSTO (Sac valley)
>
> To top it off, the jetstream appears to be drunk - I don't think I've seen
> one that looks like this one
> http://virga.sfsu.edu/gif/jetstream_pac_init_00.gif.
>
> Okay, so a cold front just blasted through, freezing level is very very
low,
> and my gut is talking to my butt and telling it to get to the gliderport
> (which is open 7 days a week now by the way).  And we all know how fast
the
> models can change (and they have been according to the discussions over
the
> last few days).  BLIPMAP is only as good as the models, and I suspect they
> are going to change a lot in the next 12 hours.
>
> Anyone (Pete? Jack?) have any comments on all of this?  It's time for bed,
> and I still haven't figured out if it's going to be good or bad tomorrow.
> And it takes me 2 hours to get up there - can't just wait for the "Wow
it's
> awesome" call from William's!!
>
> Help!
>
>
>
> To unsubscribe from the williams tip list send email to
unsubscribe@soaringnet.org
------------------------------------------------------

End entry for Tuesday Dec 4 2001
 

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Begin entry for Sunday, Nov 25 2001

Last night I told a few people I was going soaring, figuring the weather would be good.  If you'd like to be included on such an email list, one that I would send out saying something as mundane as "tomorrow looks good" or "....here's a bit of news about so and so" or if someone sends me an email that I think everyone ought to konw about, or any of that kind of email, then send me a note and I'll start such an email list.  I had it on my old computer, but it didn't transfer to this new one, and so many email addressees have changed, it's easier to stat anew.  So send me a note saying you want to be on the Soaring Diary Email News List, and I'll add you to my address list.  Thanks for your understanding on the difficulty of operating selective emails.

As for flying today - it was wonderful.
There were a bunch of us out there at William's.  Jim D was first on the scene and I arrived at 10 am as scheduled.  Key flew in in his 182, Carl was there, Bob flew the pegasus, Rick flew the 20, Sergio actually launched first as usual, and Steve flew his Pik (Sierra Sex or was it Six Sierra? I think it is "6S"). Kenny also did several flights.  There were two tow planes operating during the peak of the day.

Tow was just west of 3 sisters to 3,500 or so.  We flew north up the west side of bear valley, staying near cloudbase at 5,000 ft. We were able to get to over 6,000 if we stayed in the open areas, on the windward side (west side) of the clouds.  Passing St John's we were back down to 5,000 ft and at Diamond M Sergio lost the lift and landed there (aero retrieve was ok).  I took a photo of him from 5,000 ft, and turned tail, heading south with Jim and Key.  In the meantime, Rick and Bob had already headed back to William's.  We hooked up with Steve south of three sisters, almost to Rumsey, and eventually landed back at WSC.  It wasn't just a good flight, it was a great day for flying.  There was a good crowd, and we all had a wonderful time.  Oh yeh, Milt and Allison (the newly weds)  launched sometime in late afternoon, and had a good flight up to St John's and over to Goat and around.

After the birds were back in their boxes, we split into two groups, several went to dinner in Colusa while several others stopped off at Arbuckle on their way back southbound, heading for home.
 

End entry for Sunday, Nov 25 2001
 

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Begin entry for Sunday, Nov 18 2001

The annual Safety seminar and PASCO Awards Banquet was held last night in Dublin California.  Hopefully, someone will write to me and I will past a synopsis of what transpired.  Regrettable, I was unable to attend due to my work schedule.

No flying or news reports received to pass on, sorry.

I guess the Minden web page and the William's web page and the Hollister web page each are creating their own diary.  Visit each of those respective sites and keep up do date on what's happening.  If you think this site ought to continue, send me an occasional tidbit about activities or news.  I'll continue this diary as long as reports are received.
We are a family of sorts -- all of us here in the glider community.
We all share a common interest, and we all do something that is extraordinary.  Soaring and Gliding is not for everyone.  Many can not escape from the comfort of the world they have created for themselves.  Anyone older than two years old has learned to only do certain things, lest they suffer undesired consequences.  As people become adults, they restrict themselves to certain environments and endeavors, so as to get the most enjoyment out of life, and not experience the unexpected.  Many have gone too far, and can't even force themselves to try a glider ride, while others still have the nerve to try it, but are unable to remain open to the experience and can't get past their own self-imposed fears. They are incapable of enjoying the joy of soaring.  It is unfortunate, but that is their loss.
We have a few words with each other when we are at the glider port, but mostly,
we are each getting the enjoyment from the sport itself.  But, we know we are special, and we enjoy the company of our brethren. There are lots of reasons we have such respect for each other.  It's enjoyable to be able to talk to someone who understands what it is to thermal to cloud base.  A mutual respect exists between everyone one of us.
Over the past ten years, I've had conversations with Fran Allender.
I knew he had crewed for Mike Green, and that more recently, he was restoring a vintage wooden sailplane.  We'd recount the days flying conditions, and what we had accomplished during the previous few hours.  Talk about what the day had been like, and what tomorrow would bring.  Fran was easy to talk with, and whenever I took the time to get past my own self-imposed "gotta get things done busyness", and slowed down long enough to appreciate the talent and warmth of the people who were all around me, I have been able to bring joy into my life.  I've never had much of a knack for doing it, but the times I've taken the time to enjoy the company of other soaring pilots, I have always thought back on that experience as a time of happiness.

Fran Allender was a person I wish I had known better.  Mike Green had been keeping us informed about Fran's condition.  Fran had apparently been operated on for a brain tumor, which was "removed". A biopsy indicated that it was malignant.   He had another operation
to remove a blood clot. Unfortunately, Fran died less than three weeks after the operation.

Here is an email from Mike Green....
----------------------------------------------------------------
From: "Michael I Green" <mgorrila@home.com>
To: "NCSA, NCSA" <ncsoar@xmission.com>
Subject: Fran Allender has left us
Date: Friday, November 16, 2001 7:37 PM

Francis has been crewing for me at Nationals and Regionals, Fallon Dashes, and
whatever for many years. Fran has been my copilot in The NCSA Grob 103 and in
the most recent years, in our Duo Discus.  I would not have been able to fly at
all in 1998 without his help.   He has spent three to six weeks each year living
with me in my motor home.   He has been a dear friend and I will miss him very
much.

A copy of Monique Weil's note follows.

WeilMonique@aol.com wrote:

> Our dear friend Fran passed away in his sleep a short while ago this
> afternoon.  His wife, close friend Oren and his niece were at his bedside.
> Mike Green had visited earlier.
> There had been no change in Fran's  status of minimal neurologic response and
> he was peaceful and not in pain.  His surgery was two weeks ago today .
> Initially the medical staff had stated there was no way of knowing whether he
> would become more responsive or improve neurological function. A few days ago,
> his surgeon told us that he held no more hope for any improvement; he
> apparently suffered severe  brain damage during the surgery and subsequent
> bleeding into the  brain, which required a second operation that day.
> Fran had explicitly stated and signed an "advance directive" to request no
> artificial prolonging of life if he were severely disabled or mentally
> incompetent.   The hospital supported his wish but left it up to the family to
> give approval.  After essentially two weeks of no change,  Betty Ann  agreed
> to removal of the feeding tube when he was transferred to  the Walnut Creek
> hospital.  She felt more comfortable that he would get good care in a hospital
> than in a nursing home, where he would otherwise be transferred.  It has been
> very emotionally trying for her  and she will continue to need support from
> family and friends.
> Fran did not wish a funeral or special  ceremony;  the exception he shared
> with me was his approval of an informal get together at the airport with his
> flying buddies ..... Mike Schneider will be organizing this in due course.
> ....
> Fran was a good friend and I feel very sad ....three weeks ago, he was an able
> and functioning pilot, psychologist, handy man and good friend .  It is hard to
> absorb such a rapid turn of events; with others,  I mourn his loss.
>
> Monique
------------------------------------------------------------------------


We have lost another soaring pilot, but it is one more soul we can look forward to meeting later on.

Take the time to enjoy the moment.

End entry for Sunday, Nov 18 2001
 
 

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Begin entry for Tuesday, Oct 23 2001

I've revised that story about the flight to Minden on Oct 1st.  I added the altitude traces from Rick's and My recorders.

We received a note about some good flying at Crazy Creek last saturday the 20th.  Thanks Chuck.  Here is the edited message.....

------------------------------------------------------------------
From: "Charles Griffin" <asw24@earthlink.net>
To: <pjkelly@community.net>
Date: Sunday, October 21, 2001 9:19 PM

Peter,

I have a flight report for CCS 10/20/01.
Two other pilots were at CCS when I arrived.  John Bell (JB) and Charlie
Westernin(A5).  A5 elected not to fly because of a head cold.  Launch at 12:30
and there was good low level lift and was able to easily get off at 1000 agl.  Thermals
topped at 4500 msl although I found one instance of what I think was wave to about 5200.  High
clouds would come in and out and when the sun was off the ground it was not possible to climb.  I
had not flown for quite a while so I was thrilled just to be in the air.  Charlie will be
changing steeds as his ASW 27 arrives in LA in several weeks.  Hope you are doing well.

Chuck Griffin
---------------------------------------------------------

End entry for Tuesday, Oct 23 2001
 
 

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Begin entry for Saturday, Oct 20 2001

No new flight reports received.

Email from Ty telling us about the annual PASCO Banquet......

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: Tyler White <tylerwhite@earthlink.net>
To: <tylerwhite@earthlink.net>
Subject: PASCO Awards Banquet
Date: Saturday, October 20, 2001 7:57 AM

2001  PASCO  SOARING  SEMINARS &  ANNUAL  BANQUET
Saturday, November 17 2001

Monarch Hotel, Grand Salon
6680 Regional St., Dublin, CA
1 exit west of 580/680 freeway intersection
Hotel phone 925-828-7750
(Hotel rooms available at a discount rate: ask for the PASCO discount)

Seminars  9am - 5pm          Program will be announced in a later mailing

Banquet and Awards Ceremony
6pm - Cash Bar
7pm - Dinner

New York Steak with Herb Butter
Chicken Piccata with Lemon Caper Sauce
$35 per person

8:30pm - Speaker
"The Stratospheric Wave Project:  Soaring to 100,000 Feet"
Einar Enevoldson, PERLAN Project Manager
Dr. Elizabeth Carter, Project Meteorologist

PLEASE EMAIL, MAIL OR CALL IN RESERVATIONS BY SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10 TO:

Ty White
41600 Marigold Drive
Fremont, CA  94539
Email:  tylerwhite@earthlink.net
510.490.6765 eves
510.616.8379 days
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 

End entry for Saturday, Oct 20 2001
 
 

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Begin entry for Sunday, Oct 14 2001

Oktoberfest at William's

The annual Oktoberfest was held at William's on Saturday, Oct 13.  The usual crowd showed up, with a few new faces, and a few people from the past.  Windy Dobbs was there as were Gunter and Jeannyne from the old Silverado when we were at Lagoon Valley, EJ and Connie came over from Crazy Creek, Dorothy Mayes was there of course, Couple of new faces - Frank from Ohio? was taking some lessons and helped out, as did Linda from Minnesota, or Indiana? and most of the "regulars".  It was nice to see so many friendly faces.

The Brief-
Organized program, good overview of the days activities, lift predicted to be poor, lucky to get 6,000 ft, so poor there wasn't even a TIP ot BLIP to look at, but I made some guesses anyway.

The flying -
Three ships were rigged for dual tows.  They began to roll on schedule at 1 PM.  The first six ships were in the air within 5 minutes.  A few turns, some crossed the first turnpoint at Letz Lake, and then most headed for home in the poor lift conditions.  Jim Darke managed to work his was right down to the traffic pattern at Century Ranch, as did Bob Ireland.  They each enjoyed meeting the extremely hospitable and friendly landowner, and took aeroretrieves back high enough to land back at WSC.  Key almost was pulled into the pattern at Century by the dastardly forces of nature, but climbed back up (he was below 3,000 ft msl (1500 ft AGL) and went from thermal to thermal to make it to the second turnpoint of Walker Peak (nearly 4,000 ft MSL), and returned to William's.  However he didn't get within the required one quarter mile of Century Ranch to call it a turnpoint, so all he got credit for was the flight from Letz, to Walker to William's.  I, on the other hand, stayed on top of Letz lake, climbing 300 ft or so, then soared the northeast face of goat, working the ridge lift, then properly crossed the goat mtn turnpoint, and then proceeded to Walker and then to William's.  Thus, Rex was forced to present the winning trophy to me because I flew one and oneself miles further (having crossed over the goat mtn TP) than Key, who had worked much harder to compete the course.

The dinner / meeting-
There were many highlights, and I'd love to have other inputs to this (so send my some emails for printing here), but let me point out that we had a VSA meeting, very capably chaired by President Rick Ogden, and he did the MAD money roll of the dice. Using the full roster of all members of the entire VSA, the dice were rolled to pick a name to see who would win the roll of the dice and receive $50.00 from the treasury.  It's Divine Justice I tell you.  The name of Key Dismukes was selected.  He was being rewarded for having worked so hard and having come so close to winning the Oktober trophy for the year, but, in effect, he won the consolation prize.

Like I said there were many highlights and facets to the meeting.  Give me some help here people.  The beer keg was tapped at 5 PM, but i do remember lots of things after that.  Rex did a good review of improvements made during this past year and improvements planned for the future at William's.  The place just keeps getting better.  Hangars are all set back from the runway now, old concrete, that was uneven has been removed,  parking area is improved, drainage ditch reconstructed, Notable flights for this past year were recounted, various staff members were recognized, videos of "montague nationals" and "chasing the sun", etc.,  were shown,  just lots of things.  Joe Findley showed up with his new LS6-18 and new trailer, just off the boat yesterday.  People were chatting and socializing everywhere.   I was exhausted.  What a day!

End entry for Sunday, Oct 14 2001
 
 

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Begin entry for Thursday, Oct 11 2001

Update on Cambridge GPS Software-

Many of you already know, but for those who didn't get the word, the Cambridge DOS based software will not read flight files the were recorded after the first couple of days of September of this year.  Here is what the factory said on their home page:
10/04/01   Due to overwhelming requests from pilots, we have revised the DOS PC Software to correct the time calculation bug in V5.882. We have found that over the years many pilots have decided to use this program for flight evaluation and felt that correcting this bug was worth the effort. To download either a patch for V5.882 or V5.884, click here.
They needed "...overwhelming requests from pilots..." before they would make the revision!  Why wouldn't they do it as soon as they knew they had a problem? rather than wait for "...overwhelming requests".  Unbelievable!

They "...have found that over the years many pilots have decided to use this program for flight evaluations..."  I ask you, what the hell did I buy the Cambridge GPS Nav data recorder for if it wasn't to evaluate the flights??  It took them years to discover that many pilots have decided to use the program for flight evaluations????..."  It's freaking unbelievable they would verbalize this aloud.

Since Cambridge is now under new ownership, maybe we have a chance of getting some software that is within a few years of what has already been developed.  Strepla, Seeyou, Jerry's Winpilot, etc. all have been around for awhile.  A change in ownership may be the fix we need.

I received a note from Steve Smith.  I'll share the bits that constitute a flight report, and the parts that provide you with some exciting news about Air Sailing.  Thank you Steve for your note.
------------------------------------------------------------------
From: "steve smith" <scsmith@mail.arc.nasa.gov>
To: "Peter Kelly" <kell797@dellepro.com>
Date: Wednesday, October 10, 2001 1:08 PM

I finally got my LS6-18w.  Its wonderful.  I flew it September 4 from
Minden, and like you, found unusually good conditions for the season.
I flew to Bodie, Air Sailing and back to Minden, about 230 miles, in
3.5 hrs.   I got my second flight on Sunday, Oct 7, from Air Sailing,
following the Air Sailing board of trustees meeting and banquet on
Saturday.  The board has unanimously approved go-ahead with
construction of the clubhouse and bathroom/laundry building, building
permits have been applied for, and construction will begin about Nov.
1 when the permits are issued.  Exciting times at Air Sailing.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


End entry for Thursday, Oct 11 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Tuesday, Oct 09 2001
 
 
 

Soaring weather looks dismal.

I've been congratulated several times for my fun flights

....that I took to Minden and back last week.  I should have done it sooner.  Next year everyone will be doing it.  I wrote a story about the flights, complete with photos and graphics and created a web page.  I called it "Round Trip to Minden".  If you are interested in reading the details, please visit the following site:
 
http://www.sonic.net/~pjkelly/rndtrp.html

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to drop me an email.  I tend to be quite honest in my debriefs after a flight, so I'd be glad to discuss anything about the flights that are of concern to you.


The OKTOBER FEST will be

....this weekend at William's.  The weather looks promising.  Cold air coming in from the northwest aloft.  Not sure what the lower level winds and stability will be at this point.


End entry for Tuesday, Oct 09 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Tuesday, Oct 02 2001, 9PM

Didn't plan to write much tonight since I got back from the Gliderport at about 7:30, and it's off to work early tomorrow, but I just checked my emails, and I need to respond to Rick O.  He had a good flight on Monday as did many of us. Here's Rick's story....

Yesterday (Oct 1), I came to William's to work.  Honestly.  There was weed whacking to be accomplished.  Rex was plowing up part of the runway and needed a little help there too.  As I was gassing up the week whacker, Steve Irving convinced me to check out the soaring forecast--just for the heck of it.  The last couple of days were very hot and flat with northerly/offshore flow and I figured this day was to be no different.  Dr, Jack’s TIP said 15,791.  There’s obviously a defect in the thing.  The blip map pretty much said the same thing.  I’ll just ignore it.  After all, there’s important work to be done.  At around 10:30 it happened.  Cu started to pop over Alder Springs…very high cu.

About two hours later I launched.  Kenny gave me a tow to the tree-farm area where I released around 6,000 ft.  The first part of the flight was frustrating.  There was a massive cloud over Goat Mountain that appeared to be another 6,000 ft above me.  (In truth, it was another 9,000 ft above me!)  I was climbing at 2 kts.  I knew I could do better so I pointed the ASW-20 (MJ) toward and under the cloud but I encountered massive sink.  I retreated back to the 2-knoter.  After a slow and agonizing climb to 9,000 ft I headed north.  During the climb Paul Kellas (original PK) and Rick Indrebo (99) blew by me at 14,000 ft or so.  At St John’s I found a stronger but very turbulent thermal.  It wasn’t until I was at Alder Springs when it hit my first “boomer”.  There, I climbed to 14,000.  I left the thermal still going up at 8 kts and well below cloud base!   About this time Peter Kelly (DG) launched and Mark Weitkamp was readying Pegasus (RM).

The rest of the flight I stayed high (but not too high since I had no O2) and happy, following the cloud street northward.  The cloud street ended just West of Weaverville.  There were cu about 30 miles north from this location.  From there the clouds went north as far as I could see.  (Someday…but not today).  Meanwhile, DG and 99 were planning a rendezvous over Chester.  That’s in the Sierras!  I was feeling quite a sense of accomplishment until DG and 99 started discussing dinner arrangements in Minden.  Peter said he’d buy.  I wonder if he kept his word.  Mark Weitkamp made it as far as Alder Springs.  It was his personal best.  That’s the wonderful thing about soaring.  There seems to be no end to improving one’s skills and satisfaction.  A good soaring day has just as much to offer to the novice as the expert.  I’ll guarantee you that Mark had the same feeling of accomplishment with his flight as Peter had with his.  (For the record Mark is by no means a novice.)

As for the return part of my flight, I had nice cruise back to Goat Mountain, stopping to circle only a couple of times.  I continued south to Berryessa Dam and had a good look of my hometown of Fairfield.  There was a convergence/shear line was working almost all the way to the dam.  The only reason I returned to William's was because the sun was getting low.   Kenny was there to greet me with a warm handshake and a cold beer.  A great ending to a wonderful day!  Flight duration: 5 hrs.  Distance:  340 statute miles (approx).  68 mph.

Incidentally, Sergio is rigging his glider as I’m writing this. (Oct 2)  He’ll probably fly to Oregon, Utah, or the moon.  He’ll be satisfied too.  (Maybe)  Today’s TIP says 18,359 ft.

Well I had the same reaction as Rick O when I saw the TIP, and the BLIPs - I figured it was all wrong somehow, and besides there would be no one to fly with anyhow.  I still hadn't shaved, it was my saturday, and then I get a phone call from Kenny at 11:40 AM and he proceeds to tell me there are cu over the hills to at least 12,000 and they go as far as you can see.  I decided to go soaring.  Here's my story...
 
I was on tow behind the Pawnee two hrs and 20 minutes later after Kenny had phoned me.  Mark W. had arrived just as I was ready to launch, and I heard Rick O over Alder Springs.  I heard Paul Kellas on frequency so I changed my call sign to DG for the day, since Paul is the original PK.  I had told Kenny not to go for altitude, but speed while on tow, so it was a quick tow to 4,600 out to the hills east of Goat.  The cloud above me was massive and I figured I'd have no trouble, so I did a turn to slow down, loaded Letz Lake as my first TP and went over there, still about 4,600 ft.  I looked for lift, didn't want to back track, so headed a mile or so north, and worked 1 kt at 500 above the trees (4,100 ft) on the southeast wall of Snow Mtn - an inauspicious start, but it got better. I rode that thermal as it became 900 fpm or more up to about 13,000 ft.  Cruised to Eagle Pk climbed from 11 to 15.5 and headed towards Chester, Crossed Red Bluff at about 12,000 contacted lift below small cu in the hills, 35 west of Chester, entering my third thermal for the day.  I chatted with Rick Endrebo, and we decided to go to Minden.  I never saw him until he landed.  Rick's tow plane landed about the same time as he did, but he decided to stay the night.  Tony Sabino loaned Rick a car, so Ret (tow pilot from Crazy Creek) and I had wheels to the motel.  We stopped off in Minden where I bought Rick Dinner, and Jim Herd and his wife Jennifer joined us.

We were up early since Ret had to have the tow plane back at Crazy Creek before 9 AM.  Rick launched in the cold still air at about 7:30 AM. and headed home on tow.

I visited with everyone, and had a good morning.  Bill and Tom Stowers are doing fine, as is Andrew, Tupper was flying with Frank App, there were lots of glider pilots launching, Jim Herd and Steve Eddy, both DG-800 guys helped me get organized for the flight home, and Dave Bingham, another DG-800 guy, launched with us as well.  It was a four ship takeoff with four second spacing between the four motorgliders.  It looked good.  Dave was the only one without waterballast.

The air looked dead for as far as you could see north of Minden.  There were a few cu over Mt Rose, but getting there looked like a challenge.  We flew down to Mt Seigel, and at the south end of the Pine Nuts headed west to Alpine County.  There was no lift in evidence north of the Pine Nuts, but there were isolated small cu along the west side of Lake Tahoe. Jim went as far north as Fallen Leaf Lake, and Dave Bingham escorted me to Squaw Valley.  The wisps of clouds were about 10 miles west of Tahoe, and I was able to maintain 14 to 15 as I travelled north all the way to Boreal Ridge/ Donner Summit.  There were about four more wisps but the last one was southwest of Sierraville.  I stayed with it to 15.5 and headed towards William's, some 70 or 80 miles away.  I crossed over Brownsville, just north of Sutter Buttes, and was 5,000 over Colusa.  I dove for the field, dumped the water ballast I had loaded before takeoff from Minden, and Sergio helped me put it in the box.  Those were three firsts for William's.  First flight from William's to Minden, first flight from Minden to William's, and first out and return back to back.  In truth, they were not hard flights.  They weren't long, the lift was easy to find, and it was strong- at least on the first day.  you just gotta be there on the right day, and of course you need to have the desire.

I'll try to write it up properly for the West Wind. I hope the photos that Jim Herd snapped are useable.


End entry for Tuesday, Oct 02 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Sunday, Sept 30 2001, noontime

The link to the Soaring Forecast at Reno has been out since the 23rd of Septmber.

The last Reno Soaring Forecast was Sept 22.
I check it most every day that I look at the various weather models.
I finally received some info from others, and here is what I've been told.  The old page is gone, but the new page is located at :

http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/reno/javapg/soaring/index.shtml

I'll put it on my weather page after I've proven it is a good, and valid link.


I went soaring last Wednesday as I said I would, and I had a good day.

John K went first, I self-launched, and Rick O in the wsc ASW-20 "MJ" took the next tow.
Both of them got into wave and wandered between 9,000 and 12,000, staying above the clouds.  I never got above 8,200 or so all day.

I headed north, operating between 7,000 and 7,800 ft in consistent lift with lots of lines of clouds showing me the way.  I passed 3 miles west of Diamond M, 2 miles west of ALder springs, and went circled around black Butte at 7,500 in good lift. It was comfortable flying because the lift was reliable.  Went back to Goat Mtn, started to glide home with John K in his discus, but hit lift just north of three sisters, so I quit the final glide and headed  south, never turning, and not losing any altitude all the way to Rumsey, where I found Rick in wave at 8,000 ft. He left the wave and flew in a thermal that was going up to 6,000, but that quit (it was nearing 5 PM). We flew together back north to three sisters, as I was still at 4,000 ft,  and then we went back home to William's.
Over three hours of good flying.

I came across the valley in a powered plane yesterday (returning from Dallas) - not a sign of lift anywhere.
I think the off-shore flow may have killed all the lift. The air was certainly dry, as there were no lift markers anywhere as I flew past Merced into San Jose Airport.


End entry for Sunday, Sept 30 2001, noontime
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Tuesday, Sept 25 2001

Made an entry on the William's live page - see yesterday for link - Today ought to be ok at William's, I am hoping tomorrow will be better.

Rick was at WSC yesterday, and he said there were brief periods when the soaring was looking good.
Gary flew in some nice mountain wave from Siskiyou yesterday -  think he said 15,000 or so.

I put a link on the my weather page to download the TIP.  I needed it this mornig since I couldn't get my emails for some reason.

End entry for Tuesday, Sept 25 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Monday, Sept 24 2001

I have the next couple of days off.  I wanted to go soaring!  Weather charts show low pressure coming through today and tomorrow - Today would have been good for an hour at time, but lots of potential for bands of dead air passing through; between the bands of good lift.  Tomorrow might be good, I'll have to check it again tomorrow, but I think I'll plan on Wednesday.  Most of the low pressure will be through by then, although there is still some potential for high cirrus to still be here on Wednesday.  I'll have to watch the forecast.  The BLIP Maps are all down.  Dr Jack is having computer troubles.

If you have any interest in flying and can make it to William's, then you ought to check out the "William's Live" page.  I just posted an entry there, and you can do the same.  Kenny wrote about the flights that were done last Saturday.  That page will be more current than the diary if we use it.  I plan to make my entry there before I post things to this Soaring Diary.  If we all use that page, it will be a good tool.

I added it to my weather forecasting page, and the placed the following link on that page.  Check it out!

William's Live - Messages posted by pilots.
Most current report from William's Soaring Center
End entry for Monday, Sept 24 2001
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Thurs, Sept 20 2001

It's been a tough week for many.  Renewed religious faith for many people in this country, including pilots. As the verse goes - We shall overcome.  Life does go on.  As glider pilots we have inner strength that we test ourselves on regularly.  We know we can recover.

I saw on CSPAN yesterday afternoon that the feds were going to lift the ban on flying at small airports.

I just called (8:10 AM) the FAA at 1800WXBRIEF and talked to a briefer.  He told me that as of 4 PM yesterday, on 9/19, limited VFR Flights are authorized.  We can resume Part 91 Operations, and that as a glider pilot flying from William's, I can fly.   However, I must remain clear of class B Airspace.  For now, we are not even allowed to fly under it.  So stay away from the San Francisco Class B - which used to be called the Terminal Control Area (TCA).

The Minden Club is still planning on the Carl Herold Presentation, as well as the flying during the day.  Here is Sam's message..

------------------------------------------------
From: "Sam Whiteside" <sam@move2nv.com>
Date: Tuesday, September 18, 2001 12:57 PM

Hi Everyone! A reminder and update to last weeks message.

IF we are unable to Fly on  Sat. 22nd, the BBQ will be started at 4:30 pm with MSC meeting and Carl Herold's presentation after. If we fly, it starts at 6:00pm.

In addition, MSC executive and volunteers will bring you up to date on a host of topics relating to MSC plans, events, Website, community participation. There is LOTS happening. Don't miss it!

Sam Whiteside. MSC Secretary.
--------------------------------------------------

Also, have you been getting the Thermal Indicator Predictor (TIP)?
If not, get on the list.  It was strange talking to the FAA this AM.  I had nothing to ask them regarding the weather for today, because with the TIP and BLIP info we get from Dr Jack, we have more info than they even know about.  There was no sense in even discussing the forecast with them.

Send in your flight reports.  Please confirm the air in the sky is still going up and going down.

I just received two more messages

One from Mike Green on flying again.....

---------------------------------------------------
From: "Michael I Green" <mgorrila@home.com>
Subject: We can fly again
Date: Wednesday, September 19, 2001 8:28 PM

Flying gliders is legal again.

check:    http://38.200.9.137/010915tfr.html

mike
--
 Michael I Green
 117 Rheem Boulevard
 Orinda, CA 94563
 USA
 PH: 1-925-254-0609
 FAX: 1-925-253-8268
 email: mgorrila@home.com
                          _____
                               |
            `-----------( )-----------'
                               '
        mighty gorilla
        Duo Discus       N175DD
        PW-5               N80MG
--------------------------------------------------

A message from Ty White..........
-----------------------------------------------
From: "Tyler White" <tylerwhite@earthlink.net>
Subject: Air Sailing Banquet and Silent Auction
Date: Wednesday, September 19, 2001 9:21 PM

2001 Air Sailing Awards Banquet and Silent Auction
Saturday, October 6, 2001

Atlantis Casino Resort
3800 S. Virginia Street
Reno, NV 89502
800/723-6500
775/825-4700

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm No-host bar and social hour
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm Dinner
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm Awards Program, Silent Auction

Dinner -- $33 per person
New York Steak with Roasted Red Potatoes
or
Pacific Salmon with Saffron Basmati Rice

Please, please, please, please let me know how many are coming
and what dinner choice you prefer.

Respond to Ty White, tylerwhite@earthlink.net, 408-616-8379 w

If you have an item you wish to enter into the auction,
let me know what it is, its dollar value and a suggested minimum bid.

See you in Reno!
-----------------------------------------
Tyler White, Ph.D.
Director, Molecular Biology
Scios Inc.
820 West Maude Ave.
Sunnyvale, CA  94085
(408) 616-8379
----------------------------------------------------------

Just checked the BLIP maps for today - they still are not up yet, but please do go
to Dr Jack's new link at
http://www.dr-jack.net/BLIPMAP/CANV/viewer.html
This new link lets you pick out the charts quite rapidly, and makes for quick review.  You WILL begin to make sense of the charst very quickly.

Looks like thermals to nearly 9,000 over goat mtn and higher to the north today.

End entry for Thurs, Sept 20 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Tue, Sept 11 2001

It was a terrible tragedy this morning.

I received a couple of notices, that I thought many of you would like to read. Here they are:

Note about Minden.....

-----------------------------------------------------------
From: "Sam Whiteside" <sam@move2nv.com>
Date: Sunday, September 09, 2001 9:07 PM

Hi everyone. If you're in Minden on 9/22, don't miss our Fun-Fly, BBQ and Presentation by Carl Herold. NO RSVP necessary. Just show up!

"How the Typical Summer Soaring Lift Mechanisms Start, Sustain, and End Each Day"
1. In the Douglas County Valley,
2. At Mt Siegel,
3. Coming Home Lift patterns and differences at Mt Siegel and Mt Baldy.
4. Shear Lines between Desert Creek Peak and the Pine Grove Mountains.
--------This 1.5 hour briefing by Carl Herold will be a video projected briefing with 3D Close UP Terrain Maps showing the typical surface and summer upper air flow lines from the beginning of the soaring day to the end of the soaring day. This briefing will show where the convergence, shear line, and shadow thermal sources and lift strengths and heights tend to hang out and or drift about. Some Handouts will also be provided.

Sat. 9/22/01 Pilot's Meeting 11am. at Rwy 21 trailer parking area. BBQ & Carl after flying! Food and beverages provided.  Your donation$ appreciated. Bring a lawn chair!

Fly, Eat and Learn!!

Sam.
----------------------------------------------------------

Note about Crazy Creek....
-------------------------------------------------------------
From: "Marcia Steffey" <msteffey@dcn.davis.ca.us>
Subject: You are invited...
Date: Sunday, September 09, 2001 6:45 PM

CRAZY CREEK SOARING

BIG END OF SUMMER BASH !!
POTLUCK PIG ROAST

SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2001

Bring family and friends for a day of flying and fun!
Camp overnight!
Take a flight in our beautiful new DG-505.
Make your reservation early!

We will provide the pig roast, bread, salad, and beer for everyone. Please bring a side dish and dessert of your choice. R.S.V.P. at
(707) 987-9112 or via email at crazycrk@jps.net

Jim and Connie Indrebo
18896 Grange Road
Middletown, CA
(707) 987-9112
crazycreekgliders.com
---------------------------------------------------------------------

And, although I didn't receive any notes about it, I am planning my schedule around the annual Oktoberfest at William's.  Wendy, the office manager at William's, tells me that it will be on Saturday October 13th.  The activity schedule will be the usual - flying during the day, dinner in the evening - probably around 6-ish.  Call if you want to reserve a bed for an overnight stay, call Wendy at 530-473-5600, and call if you plan to attend dinner so they can get the food set up for the right number.  It's normally a few dollars per ticket for a great meal, and lots of fun.

End entry for Tue, Sept 11 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Thurs, Sept 6 2001

We received a couple of reports. Air Sailing Sports contest story - thank you Key.
A nice note from Ramy - doing some astounding flying - commuting to the bay area from Minden in his glider - story below.  Thanks for the report Ramy, and congratulations on the accomplishments.  Also Congratulations to Milt and Allison - I hear they are getting, if not already, married.

News Flash--  New to me anyway-
You ought to visit and bookmark the new soaring activities page that Milt has now set up.  Go to
http://www.williamssoaring.com/weather_frm.htm
It will allow you to post a report, or read the latest.  It will tell you the very latest at William's - of course it is dependent on input by the pilots, so read it and add to it.  Any flight you have a William's ought to be posted asap if you get a chance.
Good job Milt on getting that site up and working.  Using that info in combo with the weather forecasting TIP pages, everyone is going to know how to read the TIP.  You will now know what days are going to be good even before you get to the glider port.  Thanks Milt.

I flew at Truckee Sat and Sunday along with Jim and Key and several others.  Sure enough the weather was splendid.  1000 ft per minute was commonplace, with tops to cloud base near 17,000 ft. We made back to back runs down to Mammoth Lakes Airport and back toTruckee -  Once each day. Dean Aldinger made it down to Mt Whitney and back to Truckee! some 400 miles or so - congrats to Dean on a great flight.

Here is the report on the Air Sailing Sports Contest by Key - he had won the contest in 2000, and in keeping with tradition, was the manager and director for the contest in 2001.  Here is the article that Key sent to Soaring Magazine.....

-----------------------------------------------------------------
 The 2001 Air Sailing Sports Class Contest, 16-21 July,  was favored by five days of good weather and only two landouts.  This was the twenty-second consecutive year Air Sailing has sponsored this contest at its desert glider port north of Reno, Nevada.  This contest typically attracts pilots with a wide range of experience.  This year's contestants included two flying their first contest and several old pros.  The mix of sailplanes in this closely-contested race, included 1-36s, an HP-11, an AC-4A, an ASW-15, an ASW-20, a 304CZ, a DG400, and an LS6b.

 On day one the forecast was for fairly strong winds and so-so soaring conditions, so the task was set for two hours, pilot-selected.  Thermals were broken at low altitude, making for hard work, but winner Chad Moore turned in a very respectable 59.6mph (handicapped) in his Russia AC-4A.  First-time contestant Ruben Zelwer placed second at 48.4mph in a 1-36.  Third place was virtually a tie with Charlie Leu, Bob Kuykendall, and Bob McKay a fraction of an mph apart.

 Day two provided moderate to strong thermals topping at 13-15K.  The three-hour task produced good distance flights.  First-time contestant Alan Grisemer foxed the field by going for a long flight south to Hilton Ranch. His 210 actual miles in a DG-400 provided a handicapped speed of 51.0mph for first place.  Rolf Peterson was close behind in an ASW-20 with 50.8mph.

 Day three delivered challenging conditions but the contestants still accomplished respectable speeds on the 2.5 hour task.  Initially the day appeared marginal, with an inversion aloft limiting thermals below 10.5K to weak 1-3kts.  Thermals were stronger between 10.5K and cloud bases at 12K+, and the best strategy seemed to be to stay within this narrow band. Several pilots struck out to the northwest, where a large filed of Cu's lay over high terrain between Quincy and Susanville.  Chad Moore won the day with a handicapped 56.0mph, putting him 379 points in the lead for the contest.  Bob McKay was second with 50.4mph.

 Increased moisture on day four led to stronger thermals with good flat-bottom Cu's for markers.  Winds aloft were strong but manageable.  Front-runner Moore started out toward a first turn point to the southwest but got low half-way and had to return to re-gain altitude and take a second start. This time heading northwest to Flanigan, he managed to stay aligned with the lift and finished the 2.5 hour task with a handicapped speed of 66.2mph, increasing his contest lead to 606 points.   Rolf Peterson came in second with 61.3mph, putting him in third place for the contest, only five points behind Bob McKay.

 After a rest day on friday the last day of the contest opened to strong winds aloft.  Rolf Peterson started the day with three objectives:  Avoid landing out, fly more than the minimum handicapped task distance, and accumulate speed points.  He was able to climb a strong thermal to 13K shortly after going through the start gate and proceeded on a triangle to the southwest, returning to Air Sailing and using that turnpoint as a base for three more speed triangles to the southeast, using the maximum of eleven turnpoints allowed in sports class.  The speed laps were flown between 9.5K and 13.5K, with five to eight knot thermals available as needed.  Meanwhile Chad Moore was not having such a good day.  Taking his first turnpoints to the sourthwest, he turned back toward Air Sailing but encountered a strong line of sink that cost him 3500 feet in nine miles, flying downwind.  Unable to shake the sink, he squeaked back to land at Air Sailing with only 65 minutes of time toward the 2.5 hour task.  Rolf Peterson won the day with a 57.4mph speed, well ahead of the rest of the field.

 Chad's substantial margin going into the last day preserved his first-place victory for the contest.  Final scores ended up quite close, with only a 275 point spread among the top four contestants:  Chad Moore, Rolf Peterson, Bob McKay, and Charlie Leu.

 This traditional Air Sailing contest demonstrates that the sports class contest concept can work quite well, providing close competition across sailplanes with a wide performance range.  Air Sailing provides a friendly environment for newcomers and yet has challenges for even the most experienced pilot.

 No contest can succeed without substantial contributions of volunteers.  Space does not permit acknowledging all of the many people who enabled this contest but I feel I should identify several people whose assistance was enormous.  Norma Burnette, the grand lady of the gate, ran the start/finish gates for the twenty-second consecutive year.  Charlie Hayes, FBO of Palomino Valley Soaring, was the operations director and meteorologist.  Rosemary Hayes organized the banguet, a sumptuous feast.  The tow pilots of Nevada Soaring Association and Palomino Valley Soaring provided excellent launches.  Bob Kuykendall processed the turnpoint film every night, and Doug Gray and Jason Padrick provided ground support each day.

Key Dismukes
----------------------------------------------------------------

Here is the note we received from Ramy on his long glides to the Central Valley from the Sierras/ Sierra. Imagine a final glide that takes over an hour and a half!!!.....
 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
From: "Ramy Yanetz" <ramyyanetz@aol.com>
To: <pjkelly@community.net>
Subject: Glider commute
Date: Tuesday, September 04, 2001 6:23 PM

Hi Peter,

Last weekend was a spectecular Sierra flying. Many of us flew down range
all the way to Mt. Whitney and as far west as Yosemite.
In addition I flew across the Sierra twice in one week.

On 8/27 I flew out of Minden, got to 17.5K over the Sierra west
of Topaz valley and couldn't resist the temptation to glide back towards
home. It was an easy crossing from this altitude just south of Hwy 88. I
had Byron (120 miles away) in a 40:1 glide so I headed there. I landed in
Byron after over 1.5 hours of long smooth final glide. It was the most
fun and spectecular final glide I ever had. Milt gave me a ride back home on his
way from William's. Thanks, Milt.

Since my truck and trailer remained in Minden, I took a tow from Byron on Friday 8/31 and released after a little over an hour over the Sierra crest near Kirkwood. I proceed to fly down the Sierras all the way to Mt Whitney. The next day I flew up and down the Sierras again, and venturing west as far as Yosemitte Valley near
half dome.

The following day Kevin from HCS offered to drive my truck back
home, so I decided to try to fly towards home again, maybe even to
Hollister if possible, since I will be flying Hollister again for the rest of the
season. This time I couldn't get high enough over the Sierra east of Lee
Vining to cross over Yosemitte towards Hollister as I was planning, so I headed back north and crossed the Sierra again south of Hwy 88, but this time I
could only get as high as 14K over the Sierra, so it was a real thrill flying only
2K-3K over the high terrain. This time it was a 100 mile final glide to
Stockton.

Next year I'll try to do it the hard way, from west to east...

Ramy Yanetz
----------------------------------------------------------------

End entry for Thurs, Sept 6 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Tue, Aug 28 2001

Bit of a change in the fcst for the coming weekend.
Low pressure will continue near the surface, so it'll be hotter than previously thought, but the upper level air will be cool, so thermals should be there.

We received the following quick comment about flying last weekend in the Sierras/Sierra.

---------------------------------------------------
From: "Sergio Colacevich" <sergio@unlimited.net>
To: "Peter Kelly" <pjkelly@community.net>
Date: Monday, August 27, 2001 11:07 PM

It was absolutely great last Sunday (yesterday) in Truckee. Everybody went
to North Mono, then Hawthorne and back. We were flying at arount 17,000',
with 8 to 10 knots thermals and very feeble cloudlets indicating the lift.

Regards

Sergio
---------------------------------------------

End entry for Tue, Aug 28 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Monday Aug 27, 2001

Hot today - temp in Vacaville up to104 F, that's 40 C !!!
We ought to have cooler air aloft by this next weekend.  Soaring should be good!  If not spectacular.  This is a three day weekend coming up so a lot of people will be at the gliderports for the last of the well attended weekends, and the last of the strong flying conditions for this season.

The only new soaring reports I've seen have been in the PASCO WestWind. The PASCO League and contest reports from Montague - all good articles!  If you don't already get a monthly copy of WestWind magazine, send check payable to PASCO in amt of $25 to :

PASCO
41600 Marigold Dr
Fremont, CA 94539
Received an Email from Peter D. It's info that is interesting to all glider pilots in this area - here it is:
--------------------------------------------------------
From: Peter Deane <twotango@worldnet.att.net>
Sent: Saturday, August 25, 2001 3:43 PM
Subject: 2002/2003 Regionals and Nationals Bids & Dates

 Greetings Beautiful People.

 Summary of Current Contest Schedule Ongoing Grass-Root Scenario;

 1   We have 2 bids for std Nats in 2003, one from Minden Soaring Club, one
from Shasta Soaring Club

 2   We have Region 12 running the 2002 15m Nats at Tonopah; current dates
are July 30th - Aug 8th.

 3   Minden Soaring has submitted a bid for a 2002 regionals (11) at Minden
      It uses a 2 weekend format that clashes with the 15m Nats in 2002 at
 Tonopah.

 Update

 a)    2002 Regionals at Minden
 I spoke with Andrew McFall this pm about the clash and he's more than
illing to move the dates forward so there is no clash.
I suggested keeping the 2 weekend format and moving the dates to early
July; reasons being better soaring, better attendance from local pilots (no
vacation required, they will use it all on the Nats). Attendance should be good for
a run-up to the Nats at end of July.

 Re the airport condition, according to Andrew, the eastern development is
due to be complete before June 15th 2002 and road and water will be in place.
 Andrew is also rejuvenating the Minden Soaring Club and Minden as a site;
he assures me that both glider FBO's want to have contests back at Minden,
and Andrew will be attending the next PASCO board meeting to present Minden
status and coming event plans.

 b)     Alternative/Extra Regionals

 Not known at this point if any other sites have bid for a region 11
 championship in 2002. We have the Airsailing contest, 1 Regionals, 1
Nationals, PASCO League events so far; I could see another regionals at a different
site but suggest if this happens it should be toward the end of the season to
 prevent date clashes and burnout.

 c)    2003 Std Nats

 Gary Kemp tells me that Shasta Soaring has submitted a bid for 2003 Std
Nats also. Dont know proposed dates or key staffing. Proposed Minden dates are
June 14th-24th 2003. Staffing for Minden bid is Andrew Mcfall (CM) and Rick
Walters (CD)

 d)    Last but not Least

     The reason for this email  is to promote communication between the
various parties involved in putting contests together and help prevent scheduling
 conflicts. PLEASE copy me on key dates/interactions/updates so that I can
be in a position to help communication; this way we can get the best possible
 arrangement for our events.

     Many thanks to the good souls bidding for and organizing the contests;
 These are great coordination problems to have!

     I have copied a bunch of folks on this email so that Crazy Creek,
Siskyou, Minden, William's etc have some visibility into current plans; hopefully if
 there are any alternative Regionals plans in the works this message will
flush them out. Please feel free to use me as a clearing house for contest
 coordination purposes.

    Sincerely Yours

     Peter Deane (for my sins, PASCO Competition Secretary)

----------------------------------------------------------
End entry for Monday Aug 27, 2001
 
 

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Begin entry for Saturday August 11, 2001

Ruminations by the editor

It is my conviction that all glider pilots are "romantics", and those that continue to be glider pilots for a long time are "incurable romantics".

We each want to re-experience the joy and excitement of flight. Human beings were not made to fly, our domain is on the ground or in a vehicle.  It's amazing what we accomplish these days....  It's a testimonial to our ingenuity as a species, and our perseverance as individuals.  It's not all that complicated to figure out why some pilots try so hard at this sport.

Just remember, if you aren't having fun, you need to re-evaluate your priorities.
Life is a balance of all things.  Nothing in extreme.  Keep everything in perspective.
A 75 mile Silver Distance flight has just as much joy as a 1,000 k flight, maybe more.  It just depends on who you are, what you've already done, and what obstacles you've had to overcome to get this far in soaring.  It's different for each individual.
I love the analogy of "the first kiss".
There was a lot of anticipation to that first kiss.
Once the innocence is gone, it's gone; but you know there is more.  There is always more!
We always have a need to find new things to anticipate.

In soaring there are some things that may eventually appear to be truths to you.  But there are so many variables related to soaring that you never have all of the answers.  Some days you do well.  0n other days you do poorly, while others do well on that same day you did poorly.  It's more than romantic attitudes, more than motor skills, more than decision making, more than physiology of hydration, oxygenation, etc..  It's a synergistic thing.  Things are all interrelated.

Flying versus writing about it
Soaring season is the time to fly, not the time to sit at the computer talking about it.
There have been numerous spectacular flights in the past several weeks. Thank you to those who sent in reports for others to read. This entry  will include all  that I received for publication.


I have some reports from flight conditions at William's in late July.

There have been several contests here in our area, and related social events.
I encourage you to be a member of PASCO and a member of SSA so that you receive the soaring publications West Wind and Soaring.  As you can see by the infrequent Soaring Diary entries during the soaring season, I don't keep up with what is going on.  I only have a limited perspective, and only a few inputs are sent in for publication.

Key, Jim, and I planned to meet at Truckee the week of 23-25 July, and we did - I wrote some words about that, as I was so pleased with our great accomplishments, but then the news of how well  some others had done on that same week started to trickle in.  Our accomplishments paled by comparison. We were pikers!

Milt and Carl H did a 750 k that week.

Sergio did 1,000k taking off and landing at Truckee on the same day that the three of us did our 500k diamond flights for the record.

I received a note from Jim Herd about the many super long, great flights out of Ely - multiple 1,000 k flts, and there was an Ely report from Bob Trumbly as well.

Peter Deane sent us a note about the Regional Contest at Tonopah.

Here are the various reports received that are ok to publish----

This first one is from Milt about soaring at William's in mid-July.
It is worth noting the high value that Milt places on the TIP and BLIP reports.  Although they may seem difficult to understand, they are a resource that shouldn't be ignored.

Here's Milt's report and comments:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: milt <milt@cpdevelopers.com>
To: williamstiplist <williamstiplist@soaringnet.org>
Subject: Flight report for Sunday, July 15 at William's
Date: Monday, July 16, 2001 10:37 AM

Flight report for Sunday, July 15 at William's

The William's Mountain TIP was correct after all yesterday - it turned out to
be a strong shear day instead of a thermal day.  The TIP does not predict
shear - that's where the BLIPMAP comes in, which showed convergence from
William's to Redding.  This area is shown in red at the top of the central
valley on the BLIPMAP convergence map for July 15
http://www.webbnet.com/~glendeni/BLIPMAP/CANV/previous.converg.21Z.gif
BLIPMAP shows the general area in which the convergence will occur - the
actual shear line is normally quite narrow, but it will be somewhere in the
area of convergence.

Alison and I launched at 2:40pm and climbed in 4-6 knot shear to 9,000 feet
at Walker Ridge.  After a detour to assist a new pilot that got into trouble
and landing out (safely) at Century Ranch, we started north at 4pm along the
shear line, staying between 8,000 and 10,000 feet.  We flew along the shear
line, which had lots of cu and lift averaging from 2 to 6 knots, with
frequent peak lift over 10 knots.  and flew north along the shear line to
T-16 (about even with Redding), climbed to 11,000 there along a huge ragged
cloud, then returned home, circling at Eagle and Alder springs.  Final glide
from Alder Springs at about 10,000 feet.

Winds aloft for most of the flight varied from 8 to 16 knots from about 240,
and as we returned to William's, it veered around to 120 at 22 knots.  The
shear line was clearly marked by cloud or cloud fragments, with a tall mass
of torn-up cloud at T-16 - we climbed up the face of that one to 11,000
feet, which was about 2,000 feet above cloudbase.  At the end of the day
(around 6:45pm) we found some small areas of lift in the valley halfway
between the mountains and I-5, and some over William's, but did not try to
explore it.  There were no clouds over the valley to mark these small areas
of lift.

The shear line started early this day, with cumulus/shear clouds at 8:30am
over Snow Mountain.  Later it reached from around Crazy Creek north at least
to T-16, and stayed there until about 6:15pm (clouds disappeared about 30
minutes after we headed out on final glide).

So once again the Mountain TIP was a good predictor of the day.  What
appears to be happening is that there are days that are predicted three days
in advance to be strong thermal days, but as the models start indicating a
strong marine air push the TIP forecast changes to reflect that.  Instead of
strong thermals, we end up with the shear line.

FYI - for those of you flying in the Great Basin, Jack has extended BLIPMAP
all the way to Utah!!

Fly safe and have fun,

Milt
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Next, a note about Minden, the Ely Camp Group, and then a hike at William's/ Crazy Creek, with photos from Guy:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: GuyAcheson@aol.com
To: kell797@dellepro.com
Sent: Sunday, July 22, 2001 9:37 PM
Subject: Snow Mountain Soaring Conditions

On Friday, July 20, I went to Minden but the winds blew out the day.  The Ely
soaring camp group left about noon and by the radio chatter were having a
very tough time flying out.

Today, July 22, my wife and I hiked to the top to Snow Mountain.  It looked
like a super day.  I have attached photos looking south and north from the
top of Snow Mountain.

Photo from atop of Snow Mtn looking North towards Alder Springs

Photo from atop of Snow Mtn looking South towards Goat Mtn

You could have flown from Crazy Creek as far North as
you can see.

Guy
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

An enlightening note from John K  flying from Willliams in latter part of July:
This story is a good example on how perspectives between pilots vary so greatly.
Thank you John, for writing this for everyone to read.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: John Kahrs
To: pjkelly@community.net
Sent: Friday, July 27, 2001 3:28 PM
Subject: another pirep

P-

I haven't written to report anything in ages, but I did fly last week at  William'sfor the first time in a longwhile. Flew on Thursday and Friday, 19th & 20th, staying overnight.

On Thursday, it was visibly working very well North of the reservoir, and Rex said, "Today you're gonna have a great day: you're gonna go up to Yolla Bolly and return in 3 hours." That's pretty much exactly what I did. It ended up being pretty much my first "real" cross country trip. I had gone on a star-shaped flight earlier in the summer on a valley thermal day (3 Sisters/Cal Worthington/SutterButtes/Snow/Williams) a while back, and that was definitely covering some territory, but this was different. This was in the mountains, where the grownups went. I hadn't ever been north of Snow before. If I had, I was usually turning tail and skittering home as fast as I could as the sink can be rather expansive out there.

Rick and Milt left in the ASH25 a while earlier, and Ray Gimmey took off about 20 minutes before I launched, sometime around 2pm. Struggling up Walker ridge turned out to be the biggest chore of the day. In no time I was winging my way past Snow, past St. Johns, then finding a convergence, getting me right up to Alder Springs, then hitting solid thermals at Black Butte, a place that had previously seemed off the edge of the earth. Comfortable at 9000 ft, I was loosely following Rick and Milt, pushing out to Anthony Peak. Ray was waiting at Yolla Bolly peak for them to catch up. I thought how simple this is, and pushed out towards Yolla Bolly.

Halfway to Yolla Bolly I had ground down to 8000. I looked to my left and saw Rick and Milt 1000 feet higher than I was, heading the opposite direction. To add to the pucker factor, they were pulling up through a thermal while I watched my vario peg down. (I never did see Ray that day) As I turned around, I looked around, realizing that it's really a bowl more than a ridge right there, with the Eagle Peak starting to block an exit to the valley. I suddenly realized how stupid it was to be there at that altitude. Absolutely unlandable. I tried to shift away from the sink with marginal success, but not really finding anything to write home about until I got back to Alder Springs. I relaxed a bit there, got back up to 8500, did the same at St. Johns, which was working gloriously, then shot home.

I took a long hard look at the map after that. That sobered me up right quick. Sure, I was flush with pride at flying 150 miles for the first time, but I had been looking at Black Butte at eye level. Yolla Bolly / Middle Eel is the only one of California's 18 national forests that isn't crossed by a single paved road. It's hard not to scare yourself so much that you never want to go up to place like that again, but I was lulled into security by past experience. When I'm at Snow Mtn., I can almost scrape the top and still make it to William's, and if not that, then easily to Charters. But it was foolish to think that I could be equally safe at that height as I progressed up the range. It was just as foolish to think I could just follow Ray Gimmey, a pilot vastly more experienced than I was, and Rick & Milt in a 50:1 open class ship. Not that folks have never been halfway to Yolla Bolly at that height before, but those guys weren't on that day.

jk
John Kahrs

kahrs@pixar.com
510.752.3486
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 

Note I made about fllying out of Truckee - last week of July
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Jim flew on Monday the 23rd from Truckee to Boundry Peak and return to Truckee with no trouble.
I  arrived on Tuesday the 24th at 10:33 AM just in time to see Sergio crossing the field on his tow to try once again to accomplish a 1,000 kilometer flight out and return to Truckee. He has been working on accomplishing that feat for at least a year or two, maybe longer.  I talked to Jim before he launched 20 minutes later, and said I would chase after him.  I was in the air by about 11:45, and caught Sergio and Jim over the top of Mt Patterson.  The day had started slowly, and they were forced to proceed slowly at first.  Thus, Sergio decided to abandon his 1,000 k  attempt for the day.  He had come close the previous day (990 km), having landed at Carson City at 8 PM, so without a strong start, he was giving up early today. Jim and I went on down to Bishop and returned to Truckee.

Key arrived Tuesday nite, and suggested we get our 500 k diamond badges completed, since the soaring appeared to be so favorable.
Wednesday we all started out for Bishop.  I was hot dogging it and flying in 15 meter configuration, trying to fly faster than those ASW-20 guys.  On the return flight, Dick had to stop off at Minden to get a tow over the hill to Truckee.  I  couldn't get past Spooner, and headed east, flew the pattern at Carson, did an inflight start, and powered over the hill.  Key and Jim made it home before the lift quit.

On Thursday, Sergio arrived at 8:30 am, saying conditions looked favorable for yet another attempt at the first ever 1,000 k flight out and return from Truckee.  Even though Sergio was keen to accomplish his record flight, he graciously took the time to explain the proper way to record and document our 500k Diamond Badge attempt, and helped us with our paperwork.  Sergio launched at 10:30, Jim and I followed next, then Key and then Dan D. and then Dick.  Conditions were the best yet  for the week.  Jim and I flew with Sergio as far as Bishop.  We headed home and he headed towards a turnpoint out near Battle Mountain, somewhere north of  I-80.  Key and Dan were caught between large areas of virga at Mammoth Lakes and Hilton Ranch.  They worked together, making some excellent decisions, and made it back to Truckee, as did Dick and Steve and a few others. Ten of us sampled the Brew Doug had available, and discussed the possibility of Sergio's return that evening.  With nothing else to do, we headed down to Andy's Dinner. Driving back into the glider port area, we saw the trailer for C2 was open. We eagerly rounded the trailers, and there was Sergio grinning from ear to ear.  He was absolutely ecstatic.  Jubilant beyond description.  It was such a treat to be there and help him derig the ship. I took a few snap shots, we downloaded the flight recorder, and then reviewed it back at Jim's Vacation Trailer.  Sergio had his last climb at Pond Peak, and did about 100 mph on the final glide into Truckee, landing about 7:45 PM.  It was quite a victory for Sergio, and I am sure he will write us a nice story all about it, as only he can do. I look forward to reading his story.

Friday was blown out with lots of wind, but we all made it back from a flight to Frenchman's Lake and Air Sailing.

Each night we all socialized over cocktails and dinner.  It was a wonderful week.

Saturday and Sunday was the PASCO League at Truckee.  Dean organized the tasks, and Tony did the administrative work.
John Fish and I took off in our self launching sailplanes, and had a good day on Saturday, along with lots of others who were out looking for the elusive mountain wave. There were at least ten of us that flew the three hour task successfully.

Did I mention how wonderful Truckee is this year.  It was great last year, and I know it is hard to believe, but it seems even better this year.  It is again run in a very professional manner, with lots of people taking on lots of responsibility. Even more improvements than than the last few years. Credit goes especially to Mike Johnson as the MFWIC - the head guy, who is in charge.  The place is great - unbeatable.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Note from Jim Herd to me regarding the incredible flying out at Ely the last week of July. I've edited the email, but share the notes that Jim reported about the Ely Camp.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

.....As for Ely, you may have heard some things already from other participants. There was a ton of people you know in attendance. Here is a very brief run-down from my point of view.

It was a 2 week camp, with Tom Stowers taking his entire operation over there (300 miles due East). It started with Tom getting a huge "ticket" from Nevada's finest - for all sorts of violations based on transporting hazardous material (oxygen!). Meanwhile, me and about 8 others found our way across the Nevada deserts aeronautically. It was a tough crossing - I left the Pine Nuts at 12K and only got above that after Gabbs. Meanwhile Jennifer and about ten others convoyed across by road.

The first week was absolutely astounding. Ray Linskey did at least six 1,000km flights - back-to-back I think!! On one day, about 12 people did 750 triangles. On the same day, I flew with Chris Richards in a Nimbus 4DM and he achieved a new NZ national record. There was also a plethora of local, national, and world records - mostly for speed triangles. It was a classic week of 18,000 feet, 10 knots or better, cumulus, and favorable winds. Though I must say, I was intimidated by threat of thunderstorms as early as 2 p.m. on a couple of days. In a period of 3 hours, on a couple of days, we actually had winds out of every direction up to 30 knots, landings on all runways, lightening, and rain. Last year at Ely we had one or two days approaching that good (bad?), but not a whole week.

The second week was a different story. Very strong winds on the ground and aloft - extremely turbulent and broken thermals. Not what I call quality air. On 2 or 3 days very few people were airborne. One of the (pilots) took off at the customary 10:30 to find no lift. He landed downwind and full of water to expedite the relight. But he overshot and careened through the gaggle waiting for a tow. Actually, he missed all sailplanes and his wing tip wacked into the tow plane - both were still flyable.

We actually came home a day early because on Friday morning at 4 a.m. it was blowing 30 knots, at 6 a.m. we had a heavy thunder storm. I immediately got up and bagged the plane. I drove the return leg to Minden because Jennifer asked.

It really is a fun Camp at Ely. It is way out in the desert, but great people, mountain biking, caves, lake, 4WD, etc. And the flying is unbeatable. Maybe you will consider joining when you get more time.

Oh, my personal flying experience at Ely included several 500km flights in all directions. Vast stretches of desert with no people and certainly no runways! The highlight was my last flight - Ely-Parawon-Lincoln-Ely. 550km between 9,000 and 14,000 feet. Parawon is right close to Bryce Canyon - next time I want to fly that entire area called the Wasatch Range. Steve Eddy has suggested that us Self Launch types should cruise on over there for a weekend or more before the season is over.

Jim Herd
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Note and report from Peter D about the Regionals at Tonopah:
The Annual Region 12 Championships--
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: "Peter Deane" <Peter.Deane@nsc.com>
To: <pjkelly@community.net>
Sent: Friday, August 03, 2001 6:26 PM
Subject: Tonopah Region 12 Report
 

We had 4 Region 11 pilots at Tonopah,; Marc Ramsey, Kempton Izuno, Gary
Kemp and me, 2 pilots from Avenal, John Shelton and Mario Crosina, and an
old face from PASCO League days, Chris Ashburn, now in San Diego. Carl
Herold dropped in  and gave a talk on landout sites in the Great Basin,
which was well attended. Day 3 and Day 4 were tricky, especially day 4,
with many landouts which left many folks tired. Day 5 was incredible, I
thought I'd done over 100mph before I remembered 5mls are deducted from
course length due to GPS start radius.The weather was simply spectacular.
How about the terrain? Well it was  very beautiful,  in a terrifying sort of way......

 The contest was great fun, run by a great crowd. It was a pleasure to meet
some new people in Hannes Linke and Judy Ruprecht (was Judy Lincoln) and the
cameraderie was second to none. You need to check out Pez D. Spencer at
imdata.com (courtesy of John Shelton) to see that these guys are serious
about racing and having a good time.

 Peter (2T)
----------------------------------------------------

The following is a report that Peter D sent in describing the Tonopah Contest- it appears to have been written by Jim Payne.  Final day cumulative scores are shown at the bottom of the article:
-----------------------------------------------------
Tonopah Contest Day 1

The Region 12 North Contest at Tonopah, Nevada got off to a great start.  Cu first formed to the north about 11 am and by launch time at 1 pm were looking good. All classes got a 260 mile triangle. Cloudbases were above FL180 and everyone finished despite virga (precipitation [snow!] that didn't reach the round) near the second turn.Very preliminary scores show a winning speed of 97 mph in Open (TP), 97 mph in 5-Meter (JAZ), and 88 mph in Standard (WX). The weather looks to be on an improving trend.

Tonopah Contest Day 2

The Region 12 North Contest at Tonopah, Nevada enjoyed another good soaring day.  With a high temperature of about 90 degrees, cu popped northwest of Tonopah so all classes got a 274 mile task: Basalt, Mina VOR, Austin Airport and return. The first 75 miles were in the blue. After that, cloudbases were about FL180. (Max altitude is 17,500 verified by flight recorders.)

Very preliminary scores show a winning speed of 98 mph in Open (LB), 90 mph in 15-Meter (8N), and 91 mph in Standard (2T). The town is really happy to have the soaring contestants here. Last night the Chamber of Commerce hosted a steak cook at the Mining Museum. The evening included a very interesting tour.

Tonopah Contest Day 3

Day 3 at the Region 12 North Contest at Tonopah, Nevada was another interesting one. The Weather Channel forecast said "partly cloudy with a slight chance of thunder over the mountains. High temp of 90 deg."  Cu popped before the end of the 10 am pilot's meeting. At launch we had OD to the east.

All classes got a 278 mile task: Basalt, down the White's/Inyos to Lone Pine, Silver Peak and return. The CD (Hannes Linke) threw in the third turn so the optimum route was not a second trip up the Inyo's. However, the third leg was blue so most pilots went back north to almost Bishop, adding many miles to the task.Cloudbases were about FL180. (Max altitude is 17,500 verified by flight recorders.)

Very preliminary scores show a winning speed of 86 mph in Open (LB), 88 mph in 15-Meter (8N), and 81 mph in Standard (54). Three pilots outlanded.  Tonight the town is putting on a swordfish cook at the Elks for the contestants.

Tonopah Contest Day 4

Day 4 at the Region 12 North Contest at Tonopah, Nevada was again an interesting one. The forecast was for partly cloudy with a slight chance of thunder over the mountains and a high temp of 91 deg.  Cu popped before 9 am.
All classes got a 325 mile task: Barker Airstrip to the north, Bald Mountain Airstrip far to the NNE, Duckwater Strip to the east, and return.  Cloudbases were about FL180. (Max altitude is 17,500 verified by flight recorders.)

I flew with my son, Jason. Our start was probably typical. Just out of the start cylinder we found a thermal that averaged 13 knots to 16,000 feet MSL. (The top of the start cylinder is 5,000 feet AGL which is 10,524 feet MSL.) We had a really great run for 250 miles, dodging occasional virga and getting snowed on a couple of times. Approaching the last turn, we encountered a big blue hole. 40 miles later we encountered a wall of virga  garding the route home.  Approaching the storm with probably an average speed over 100 mph, we went to survival mode and managed to get up and get home albeit much slower.
About one-half of the 28 sailplane fleet outlanded. Scores show a winning speed of 90 mph in Open (TP), 91 mph in 15-Meter (NS) and 84mph in Standard (2T).

Tonopah Contest Day 5 (6 pilots over 100 mph)

Day 5 at the Region 12 North Contest at Tonopah, Nevada was "smoking." Very preliminary scores show six pilots over 100 mph. The winning speed was 104 mph in Open (73) and 105 mph in 15-Meter (IY & R1 on his 60th birthday). I left the airport before I saw any Standard scores; Jackie thinks the winner was at 99 mph in Standard (2T) With a system of drier air on the way, the forecast was uncertain. We might have cu early and then have skies go clear. High temp was forecast to be 95 deg F. The first cu popped at 9:45 am and by launch time we had a classic good cu field in the task area. Cloudbases were again about FL180. (Max altitude is 17,500 verified by flight recorders.)

Because of some long retrieves yesterday, the CD (Hannes Linke) decided to have
a "flying rest day" by calling a 205 mile task: Austin Airport, Monitor Ranch, and return.

I flew with the contest forecaster, Dan Gudgel.  We had a good start with a good climb to 16,000 feet soon after departing the 5,000 foot AGL cylinder. We picked the cloud street to the right of course line which turned out to be a mistake. We thought it crossed the valley directly to the turnpoint 90 miles away. But, the visibility is so good was it really much further away than it looked so we got slowed down crossing a large area of blue. Leaving the second turn about 70 miles from the finish we found a 12 knotter that turned into 15.5 knot on the averager. We left at 16,500 figuring that we might sail right through the 17,500 foot limit if we made another turn. We charged home at 110 knots indicated airspeed to achieve 101.6 mph. Awesome fun!

This weekend Tonopah is celebrating Jim Butler Days (Founder's Days). Many interesting activities are planned for the weekend such as a street dance tonight. The weather is perfect for having fun. For those of you wondering why the Open speeds are not always faster than the 15-Meter speeds, the Open Class is being launched last so it's task opens later than the other classes. On several days, the early starters had to deal with less virga. And of course, we Open Class drivers would love to have the same wing loading as a full up Ventus.  Footnote on Day 4: All the outlandings were accomplished with only a couple of scratches.

Tonopah Contest Day 6 (Last Day)

Day 6 at Tonopah was a GBD (Great Blue Day).  At the beginning of the day, a weak cold front lay across the northern part of Nevada. It brought a drying southwest flow to the task area. The task call was 195 miles: Goldfield, Mina VOR, and Wine Glass Airport.

I flew with the CD, Hannes Linke. For the start, we climbed through the top of the start cylinder to over 14,000 feet. Since it was into the wind, we charged the 20 miles to  Goldfield before circling. Along the second leg we got to 16,000 feet as the blue conditions got better. Leaving the second turn we made a climb to over 17,000 before making a fast final glide.

Based on the winds at the airport, Dan Gudgel says the front passed during the day.

The day winner in Open was Al Leffler (LB) at 89 mph, 15-Meter was Greg Chaffee (NS) at 87 mph, and Standard was Walt Rogers (WX) at 81 mph. The Open Region 12 Champion is Jim Payne (TP), 15-Meter champion is Greg Chaffee, the Standard champion is Peter Deane. (2T)

Jackie and I had so much fun that we give Tonopah the Gold Seal of approval. Of the seven days we were here, six had cu above FL180 and the blue day had lift to above 17,500 feet MSL. The site is far enough the Pacific Ocean that it does not have the maritime influence that sometimes clobbers sites along the Sierra.

Jim Norris did a great job of setting things up and Judy Ruprecht did a great job of on site Contest Management. Hannes Linke did a great job as CD. Matt Demsky, a 16-year old from Avenal, did a great job as scorer. The airport manager was most helpful.How good was it? Without me asking, Jackie says, "Jim, you need to beg, borrow, or rent a 15-Meter sailplane for next year."

Jim Payne

--------------------------------------------------
Final Day, Cumulative Scores:

Region 12 North Championships 2001, Tonopah, Nv.
Saturday, July 28, 2001

Standard Class Day 6
CumulativeDay

Rank   Points  ID    Name                    Glider         Rank    Points     Speed  Dist _______________________________________________________________________
1    5614    2T    Deane, Peter             LS-8a           2      996     80.98  193.22
2    5506    WX    Rogers, Walt            Discus B        1     1000     81.34  193.22
3    5346    JC    Cochrane / Frantz, J    Discus-C        3      843     68.60  193.22
4    4762    CP    Clerx, Ben                 ASW-28          5      725     59.00  193.22
5    4642    VW    Ainslie, Andrew         SZD 55          4      839     68.24  193.22
6    3177   GPC    Calhoun, Garrett        Discus-2a       6        0
7    3154    54    Ramsey, Marc            DG-303          6        0          W
8    1716    9J    Izuno, Kempton          Libelle 20      6        0

15 Meter Class Day 6
CumulativeDay

Rank   Points  ID    Name                    Glider         Rank    Points Speed  Dist _______________________________________________________________________
    1    5604   NS    Chaffee, Greg           Ventus-C        1     1000   87.23  193.22
    2    5589   8N    Ladd, Dan               ASW-27          4      925    80.72  193.22
    3    5528   IY    Ekdahl, Carl            ASW-27          7      880    76.79  193.22
    4    5238   R1    Cundiff, Roy            Ventus-2a       3      937    81.77  193.22
    5    5094   CM    Crosina, Mario          ASW-20     8      812    70.81  193.22
    6    5001   ZA    Clarke, Ron             Ventus 2c       5      914    79.72  193.22
    7    4907   55    Saunders, Mark          LS-6b           6      897    78.21  193.22
    8    4888  JAZ    Athuil, Philippe           LS-6b           9      742    64.75  193.22
    9    4871  1EC    Carapetyan, Gene       ASW-27B    2      961    83.83  193.22
   10    4311   3Z    Ashburn, Christopher PIK-20D        10    694    60.57  193.22
   11    4282   OD    Navarre, Mark           ASW-20         11    388           177.45
   12    4230   4U    Wuenstel, Harry         Ls-6b          12        0         W
   13    3237   05    Shelton, John          Ventus-C       12        0         W
   14    2742    E    Raisanen, Wally         Ventus-B       12        0         W
   15    2350   GW    Kilbourne, Ken          Ventus B       12        0         W

Open Class Day 6
CumulativeDay

Rank   Points  ID    Name                    Glider         Rank    Points  Speed  Dist _______________________________________________________________________
    1    5639   TP    Payne, Jim              ASH-25          2      970     86.01  193.22
    2    5334   LB    Leffler, Al             Nimbus-4        1     1000     88.69  193.22
    3    5241   73   Ponte, Claudio          ASH-25          3      965     85.58  193.22
    4    4975   ON    Green, Bob              Kestrel         4      757     67.17  193.22
    5    3224   NK    Kemp, Gary              Nimbus 3        5        0
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

One last item for this entry.

Dr Jack now has a new address, so I revised the web pages that tell you how to get to the BLIP Maps.  See the latest revision of the weather related web sites at http:// www.sonic.net/~pjkelly/tswxlst.html

End entry for Saturday August 11, 2001
 

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