20 May 2011

How u hangin' ?

The WW Covert

The Covert was made for me by Jeff Shapiro and beautifully made it is too. I measured myself at least six times and the harness came and fitted perfectly. I have just recently put my second ‘chute in which is almost exactly the same size as my main ‘chute (34mtr2) so if ever the worse should happen I should have a 64mtr2 parachute – hopefully there will be no strong thermals if ever they are deployed (heaven forbid) otherwise I will be in orbit and it might take a while to get to Earth.

I have always found it impossible to fly for a long time in a position equivalent of wearing stiletto heels, not that I know what that feels like, you understand so I had to make a quick mod to flatten my feet out (that's just my preference). Some people can cope with it but not me as I suffer from sever cramp in my feet when flying so when landing with cramp it feels like walking on broken feet and takes at least half an hour for me to recover. I’ve had at least 3 Aeros Vipers and they all had pointy foot plates which when retro fitted with a foam wedge squared my feet up perfectly - it’s probably just me, there are lots of Covert’s out there with happy, pointy toe’d pilots.

I *think* I am the first pilot in the UK with a Covert and there was lots of interest at it’s first UK outing. I have now had quite a few hours flying in it, some short but some quite long flights with on average of 3 hours (five being the longest) and it is SUPER comfy and very EASY to land in and there is NO creep on the angle of dangle. I was worried that such a tight fitting harness might be a problem but that is not the case.

Thanks for the harness Jeff. It's a peach:-)))

16 May 2011

Lollipop lollipop, Oh lolli lolli lolli, Lollipop lollipop

"Just like a lightning from the sky"
This year my ride is a WW T2c fully loaded and her name is “Lollipop”
(The name came about through predictive text and I liked it!)

I have to say I have had a lot of very nice comments about my new custom T2c - some from Moyes boys:-) What's all that about?

I am very happy with the glider especially the handling! I can if I want thermal it with 3/4vg! The T2c just seems to absorb all the rough and tumble that gets thrown at her with the bar never seemingly wanting to get ripped out of your hands like the glider wants to loop. I have to say I'm loving “lollipop” or the “butterfly” as Gerolf described her.

Thank's for building such a great glider Steve & Mike – I know it was a pain in the a**e to build.

SE Wales British Open Series – Round 1 May 2011

We arrived home from Italy, dropped off the tent and hooked up the Caravan (in the same day) and headed for another 5 hours in the car to SE Wales ………… we really should have stayed in Italy! The weather was pants for four out of the five comp days with a strong Easterly wind blowing. Four days of windy weather equated to four days of blurry, fuzzy, wallet draining, happy smiling beer consuming hypoxia!

Thankfully, in desperation on the last day those of us who hadn’t given in and gone home drove 1½ hrs to The Malverns hoping to commit aviation. It was the right decision and Meet Head, Pete set a cracking task: 84km task with 700fpm climbs (occasionally 800fpm).

Meet Head, Pete setting the task

The Malverns - those who went home early missed a great day

In the caravan wishing we were back in Italy

Italy – Trofeo Montegrappa – April 2011

Shenanigans on take-off as can be seen Wolfi was in serious comp mode

Gordon Rigg recommended the Bassano comp to me (cheers Gordo) and I first went 2 years ago and loved it. Would have gone last year but the timing was not good, you see the comp is always held over the Easter weekend and the weather can only be pre-booked if Easter is late. Yet again we had superb weather this year.

I really enjoyed the competition but have to say I was not in ‘competition’ mode – the desire to race and get there first and take risks was just not on my agenda. Seems that no matter what happens with results I won’t make the Brit team so I thought I might as well take as long as I can in the air and enjoy the flying and get used to my new kit. Maybe the hunger has left me for now, who knows when it will return ……….?

The Brit contingent

This is Madonna Del Buon Volo. Her prayer:
Dear Virgin Mary bless anyone
Who flies and loves to glide
May your holy shield be always
With those in the open sky

Florida - March 2011

I had some great flying out of Quest with Davis - even though he couldn't understand my 'Yorkshire' accent!

We decided to head out to Florida for a holiday! Caroline had never been out to the Florida comps with me so the 'deal' was a bit of sightseeing balanced with free flying and we had fun. Five flying days and 4 sightseeing days including a day at Disney! The good news is she liked it and wants to go back so maybe next year the timing of the comps will fall right and the air fare will not cost the earth?

We based ourselves at Quest as always it was as relaxed and friendly as ever with a great group of people there for free flying. I still maintain that the best comps in the World were at Quest – can we have them back p.l.e.a.s.e .......... Jamie?


GoPro photo - Kali River Rapids, Animal Kingdom. Took us the rest of the day to dry out! Good fun though.

Disney - it had to be done & free tickets too from Carole & John (thank you)

Gin o'clock at Oz Report HQ with Belinda

We watched this Quest 'resident' for ages eating his nuts on the steps

The first tow was a great one

Hitching a ride to the tow line

We woke up to find Santa had arrived!

Is it 2011 already?

Ok, so I’ve been away for a while but I’m back now and the plan is to keep the blog up to date for the rest of the year – a kind of New Year’s Resolution in May ha ha (we will see).

Where to start? Already there have been 3 hang gliding trips to report on. First Florida, then to Italy followed by Wales!