Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Valle - Day 1

The first day of flying is in the bag and our stellar crew of 9 made it up and down the hill with various levels of acumen. Most went over the back with at least 9 different stories to tell. –
Mine is the only one I can tell with certainty and its clarity may be a bit in question.
Launch was uneventful – Many, many pilots, not as many as in days past but well over 70. The air on launch and in front was thermic but no guaranties. I only felt like I might drop out once and then that feeling was warmly removed by a nice little pop of warm air.
Round and round we went up and down. After enough time of leaning left my neck was tired and I was ready to leave. I got to the top of the gaggle and was a happy camper as more folk started to talk about leaving. – Just as they worked up to 9K plus – my top was 9350 or so, I fell out and hit a bit of sink – no worries but then another miss turn and I was 4 to 500 under Cj and Stephan as they headed out. –Dam – do I chase from below or do I let them leave and get back the altitude I just lost prior to heading out. Worried that I might loose my guide I fell in line but 400 feet low. – The combination of a slower wing and lower altitude was enough to separate the Men and Lady from this boy. I found myself two low to catch ride up la casa and went for the “little rocks” below.
The scratch session lasted – it seemed like 30 min but eventually gravity won out over wind and wit.
My landing zone was perfect, protected on two sides with high-tension power lines and 50 foot trees on the base leg I crabbed in over a hut, pig pen, laundry on lines, smoke coming from a cooking fire and little children crying. The landing was hot –no wind to maybe 4 mph tail but all was well and 4 children folded my wing their total age was 10 and the oldest was 5. – Very cute.
Matt Cone was my ride to lunch, having snagged a cab from way up past the Messa and out to some unnamed hamlet with many more children. We had mucho cervesas and great food then our driver took us back to the lake LZ. 50 peso later we were on top of the lake side site ready to fly. One quick sledder and a sweet landing and it was back to the B&B for a change of clothing and more food.
More tomorrow, hope for some video – no flying pics today – that is another story.
For the flying among us the air was lighter than normal – thermals had almost no edges with a top at about 10K. I logged 2hrs 20min in the air. The convergence was marked with a large cloud band and those who made it up had a great time working it. – More later (thanks for the computer Matt.)

No comments: