Sunday, January 13, 2013

Good report - Once

WGC2013 report - 13 January

Though there will no doubt be some dissent from "Monday morning quarterbacks", the decision to declare a rest day looks like a good one.  The predicted good soaring weather did arrive yesterday afternoon, but the fat cumulus clouds at least had the good grace not to appear over the airfield until around 4pm - just late enough to support the belief that there would have been insufficient time for a decent task.

Popular rest-day activities included beach excursions (the closest is about a 75-minute drive from Chaves), and a quiet day near home.  My day included a visit to an interesting shop in the town of Tres Arroyos ("Three streams") about a half-hour southwest.  In a building that may once have been a small warehouse is an improbable collection of merchandise mostly - but obviously not exclusively - pitched to tourists.  This is the place to go when you need hay, bracelets, dogfood, gas grills, grains, cured ham, cutting boards, tables, gaucho knives, cheese, wine racks, sausages, small swords, or leather belts.  All of this is locally produced and to the extent I could judge (i.e. omitting such items as hay and dogfood) showed evidence of good craftsmanship.

Some additional tales from Friday's flying have filtered in.  A few pilots landed in fields just short of the airfield, and not all of these had done their field-scouting homework - at least one came to earth in a soybean field, which when plants are small is okay for the glider, but will reliably lead to an unhappy farmer.  So we surmise that the Otto Ballod gliding club is now in line for some neighbor-relations problems that may persist past the end of this contest.  And one story had it that among the short-landers was a pilot who'd released just a bit early from an aerotow retrieve and who compounded his problems by failing to extend his landing gear (a detail not infrequently overlooked during a no-pattern, straight-in landing).  Fortunately, in a smooth field this rarely produces much worse than an acute case of embarrassment.   (Because I've already expressed my wonder at rules that make the nature of fields just short of home so significant, I'll avoid this subject here.) [Thanks. Ed.]

Today we awoke to a low, solid overcast that by 10:30 had dissolved into low cumulus clouds - rather like the beginning of many good days at Uvalde.  At the pilot briefing we learned that this had much the same cause as at Uvalde (sun acting on a layer of marine air) but by no means the same result.  It seems the good soaring conditions of yesterday have retreated some ways north.  If these can be reached, pilots should find strong climbs to good altitudes under cumulus clouds.  Unfortunately, it seems likely that wind from the ocean will keep our local weather difficult and free of cumulus.  Wind - which as launch time approaches is agreeably light from the southeast - is predicted to strengthen, perhaps to troublesome velocities.

[Update: all Tasks were cancelled at 2pm. It's another rest day.]

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.