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

Monday, October 12, 2009

Pulpit Flying, Sunday, October 11, 2009.

The view from the ramp as I start my launch run:

My launch sequence, photographed by Mel Sessa:

View From the Bottom of the Stack from Cragin S on Vimeo.

The view of the main landing zone as I turn on to final approach:

Once more I return ot the club site the Pulpit to fly over McConnellsburg. An early start (for me) got ,me there about 11:15. Dan Tuck and Greg S were already there. Other pilots showed up over the next couple of hours. I had agreed ot be Observer for Greg S. This would be his second Pulpit flight. His dad, Mel, was there, camera in hand. Mel's photography club has a contest underway with the theme of flight. Bacil arrived a bit after 12, and after a quick set up was the first to launch. He used the new gravel slope and found lift right away. Greg was encouraged by the easy launch, and we talked about a flight plan. Dan Tuck was next pff teh gravel slope. Greg decided to go from the old ramp, since his previous Pulpit launch was from that ramp. Mel was more nervous than Greg. Ric H and Kelvin P assisted on the wires and Greg was off and up into the sky.
I helped Krystof launch, then finished suiting up while several other pilots launched, including Kelvin, Ric, Carlos, and Luis. Dan T, Tony D, and PG pilot crewed me off the old ramp at 1:50. My launch felt good - none of the nose pop I had done a couple of times recently.
The great lift of noon had diminished, so I only got about 200 over launch as I worked down the ridge. I looked up to see 5 or 6 gliders several hundred above me, bu t I never caught the bump to join them. After playign around just above the ridge, I slowly sank out, and headed out to join the two gliders already on the ground. I set up a clean approach and ran out my landing in the middle of thei main field. Total time, 20 minutes.
Others joined me on the ground over the next hour, and one car headed back to the top to launch Dan T. Last to launch, Dan caught the only train over the back and was the lone XC of the day, crossing I-81 just east of Greencastle.
Supper at Tony's Pizza on Rt 11 in Greencastle with Bacil, Dan Tuck, Carlos, and Luis, then off to the house. Good, fun day.