Patience rewarded

Earl over launch at Wolfgat

Yesterday, though the forecast was very strong, when I had a look at the real time wind strengths at the airport and Muizenberg, I suspected that it would be flyable at Wolfgat (AKA Macassar).  I headed down there after alerting the lists, and was very pleasantly surprised to have Earl Valentine call me and come to join me.  It was quite special to have Earl along, as the last time he properly flew his glider was the day we were flying together at Dasklip, and he crashed with spinal injuries requiring a rescue, surgery and rehab.  We arrived to find it too strong (40-45km/h on the traditional launch; 38km/h at the beach), and so I took the dog for a walk and grabbed a nearby geocache.  After some intense parawaiting and talking rubbish (as we do), the wind began to drop.  By 17h15 it was 28km/h and very steady on the dunes, and 18km/h on the beach, so I volunteered to launch the Gradient Avax XC3 from the beach, walk it up the dune and see how things felt.  I was immediately flying, and soon joined by Earl on his Sol Synergy.

Cruising amongst the gulls
Cruising amongst the gulls

The wind was SSE, so we had fast runs to the west and slow cruises back east, but abundant and easy lift, marked by the gulls.  The glide and speed on the XC3 was such that I was able to run all the way to the western car park and keep aloft on the way back, soaring the smallest dunes with my feet literally trailing through the grass in places.  We landed just after sunset.

Tracklog and more photos:  http://www.paraglidingforum.com/leonardo/flight/651141 – and yes, I’ve now taken on the XC3 as my new paraglider 😉

Earl on the Sol Synergy (first time in 2 years!)
Earl on the Sol Synergy (first time in 2 years!)

 

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