|Total Hours||0h 28m|
|Best Height Gain||124 feet|
I must admit it had felt like an eternity since I had last flown which contributed to my nervousness to fly. The responsibility of young children certainly makes you question the risk/reward of hang gliding but after recovering from Covid, I had come to realise that I am better off living life to its full potential!
The previous evening I had watched Top Gun Maverick [not bad, very 80's nostalgia] so wasn’t too eager for an early start. As yesterday’s forecast suggested strong in the morning with wind expected to back from a north-easterly to a north, I wasn’t in a rush and arrived at Firle at 10am. After a quick catch-up with flying colleagues, I learned that others were just around the corner at Bo Peep. That was certainly the best site for the wind direction, but I was convinced it would come around to the north later.
With paragliders arriving, I was keen to get up into the air before it became too busy. Without too much faff, I managed to rig and prepare myself for flight. No-one else seemed too enthusiastic to fly; I suspect I was going to be wind dummy, so Nicos assisted me to launch.
I launched into what I thought was a northerly wind but as I began to beat back and forth along the ridge it became very evident that the wind was way off to the east; it always amazes me how the shape of the hill can distort the true wind direction observed at take-off!
It was quite a battle to stay up and after around 20 minutes I observed paragliders readying to take-off and one rigid below prepared to launch. While I was high enough, I decided to nip in for a top landing [actually, I was a little too high]. I started my approach from the car park direction and climbed onto the uprights nice and early. I literally zoomed past the landing area, headed towards Beddingham like a missile when I realized that the true wind direction was north-east and I was effectively flying downwind! Still on the uprights I turned through 180 degrees [avoiding the large herd of cows congregating in my initial landing spot] and pulled more speed on, headed back towards the reservoir. I was keen to get down and not overshoot, so continued in this direction where I quickly met the ground. The landing was a fast one and I had to run it off. I was strangely pleased to be back on the ground, but also content for having cleared my flying cobwebs and achieving my first [and only] flight of the year!
|Date||Sun, 29 May 2022 - 11:30|
|Glider||Wills Wing U2 160|
|Comments||NNE-NE; 10-15 mph; wind certainly off to the east. Top landing approach was a downwind!|
|Height Gain||124 ft|
|Total Hours||98h 29m|
Total Flying Statistics
The total flying statistics up to and including 29 May 2022:
|Total Hours||98h 29m|
|Longest Flight||2h 25m|
|Unique Sites Flown||21|
|Best Height Gain||3,000 feet|
|Total Distance||70.9 km|
|Furthest Flown||13.5 km|