I was a Live Exhibit at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum Dulles Annex, Udvar-Hazy Center,
March 25, 2006

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Taylor Farm, Sunday, July 9

The forecast for Sunday looked prime for good training hill flights at Taylor Farm: winds SSW, 5-10, partly coudy sky,high 84 F. I arrived there about 11:45 to find John Middleton setting up wind socks and his three students about ready to assemble their gliders. John had brought the lawn tractor, and was planning on making parts of the LZ more presentable between student flights.

John took the first flight of the day just before 1:00, and got enough lift to rise above launch for a moment. Between 1:00 and 4:20 I got in six flights from the top of the hill. The wind was a bit switchy, a lot of the time coming more from the south than southwest. As a result, most of my flights started with crosswind launches, all of them satisfactory. For my landings, I had three I am happy with, and three that were fully safe, if not as pretty as desired.

Hang 0 students Mike and Chris spent most of their afternoon on the flats, and then with four to six flights from just up the hill. Both are getting the hang of it. Hang 1 Matt, already on his own Falcon, put in about eight flights from the top, and is looking pretty good. After class John told him he may be in the mountains in about a month.

My day at Taylor also gave me a chance to play more with my new little movie camera. I figured out how to mount it on my helmet so it looks where I am looking, instead of down and to the side. I slso tried rigging it on my GPS mount for a basetube position. One aspect of a basetube position... on landings all you see is sky at the end. If you have Shockwave or Flash Player installed, you can see the results in the movie below.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Blue Sky, Saturday July 1

After a hiatus from flying for a month, I hopped back into the sky with a couple of truck tows at Blue Sky HG Park in Manquin. Conditions were ok but not great. First flight I towed to 920' and had a sled. Good landing though, after getting kicked around as I turned onto final.
The second flight was particularly fun. Towed to 1115', caught a nice thermal at 775', and worked it back to 1100. Total flight was 19 minutes.
On that 2d launch, I also experimented with the new helmet camera. Initial test video looks neat... this is gonna be a fun toy once I get it all sorted out.