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Region 10 North - Monday Report

Pilots and crew awoke this morning to crystal clear blue skies.  At our morning pilots meeting Steve Vihlen gave an optimistic forecast, of which none of us questioned.  By 11:30 am the entire sky was covered with textbook perfect cumulus clouds. 

Our task today was a 170 mile turn area task with 20 mile radius for both turn cylinders.  The NAM and RUC both showed great conditions, strong lift and lots of lift markers.  There was however a "slight" chance of thunderstorms later in the afternoon.

By 12:30 (only 30 minutes prior to launch time) several cumulonimbus clouds had developed off to the east.  Minutes later, these cumulonimbus clouds developed into level 6 thunderstorms with tops at 60,000 feet.  The normal weather patterns of this area have a typical flow from the west.  However today was irregular with a flow from the east.  Everyone hoped this huge thunderstorm in the distance would pass to the south giving us a chance for a shorter task to the north. 

Unfortunately at launch time mammatus clouds were directly overhead, with strong lightning and a shaft of rain heading directly for our field.  Our CD Charlie Minner called off the day just in time for everyone to get their glider tied down or placed back in the trailer.

Scott Alexander

Posted: 5/24/2010


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