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Region 2 - Day 1 Report

The first flyable day of the contest proved to be something special.  A cold front marching slowly through Pennsylvania produced winds that initially were south of west, and thus marginal for our local ridges.  But a task to the south took pilots into an area where the ridge orientation is more favorable, and both wind and thermals here were everything anyone could have wished:   Speeds (in unballasted gliders) were often above 100 kts, and in the few cases where they were needed, 6- to 8-kt thermals were available. 

The result was achieved speeds near 90 mph.  A trick early in the task was to decide how deep to go into the first turn cylinder, past the point where ridges are available.  Unaware of just how good the ridge lift would later turn out to be, a good number of pilots turned too short here and thus, even taking the maximum possible distance at the remaining 2 turn areas, returned home undertime.  Most agreed it was about as strong a day as anyone should want to fly without waterballast – many pilots spent a fair amount of time several hundred feet above the ridges, where speeds were still good and the ride much more comfortable.

The evening meal was Italian chicken with pasta, prepared by Lisa Barner.  She has assumed the catering duties for this contest and has clearly demonstrated that her skill in preparing tasty meals for a large group of contest folks is, as the saying goes, “not of yesterday”.

- John Good


Posted: 5/19/2015


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