These guys were like house cats in the Wolcott LZ, curious and super friendly. Amazing animals.
I had a quick flight in overly strong lift. So much that I ran from it, which was out of character. Getting conservative I guess. After the skies filled in with gust fronts everywhere we looked, Fred and I finished burgers and went back up. Wolcott delivered by drying out and stablizing in spite of everything (just like always). Got a half hour.
Lookout has been wet but the cold fronts have made things work. Yesterday, I broke down the ATOS in rain and hail as a tornado touched down in N. Denver (but it was good before I was ready). Today was forecasted to overdevelop later, but to still have tornado potential.
The big scary stuff didn’t happen till after dinner. It was super scratchy/nice for hours and hours and hours….
Above, Jan. Below, Casey.
Above, my Chris Price Cocoon made from climbing ropes! Balled up for the first time in a cocoon and was amazed at how much more speed I can get, just starting from level flight.
The usual yet covert launch buzz usually ends when I’m pulled in as far as possible, but with this whole balling up thing, I could get the extra 10 feet down to mess up Kiernan’s hair.
So, today had 4 flights for me. One LZ landing, one fairly normal top landing, and 2 new toplandings in NNE wind.
How do you land in N, NNE, NE wind? I tried it from the standard approach, coming in behind launch and trying to hit the hill back there but that’s making me land directly downwind and it’s way lifty back there since it’s creating ridge lift. Overshot that. Then I tried an approach up the launch face, but with more of a NW direction instead of straight up launch in a West direction. But I overshot that too, partly because it’s pretty tight in there between the “M” and the hill. So it’s not big enough to hit with safe speed.
So, 3’s a charm. I needed to fly straight into the PG launch and forget about trying to face “into the wind”. Just aim at the hill and keep lots of speed and flare. So, that worked out pretty darn good. The next time, I did the same thing but was anticipating just aiming at the steep grassy hill (crows nest) to land on. I ended up a skosch low and just flared to land right smack dab in the middle of the PG launch. Somehow, my feet barely got under me, but they slid out too far and I kinda caught myself with my dairy-air. For 5 seconds I thought I broke my tailbone off in the mountain, but all is good, with a mother of a bruise.
Airtime: 2 hrs
Afterthought: One cloud dropped out early in the day and made a couple rumbles of thunder. It was isolated and nothing else looked bad. Fortunately, something above (inversion I think) was keeping the moisture from pluming up into super cells. A little bit of sun today would come out and then everything would lift a little stronger and cloud up the entire sky and slow the sun enough to keep the lower atmosphere under boiling and at a perfect simmer. Cloudbase dropped to Lookout Mtn tower height 3 times during the day. I landed a couple times just because I couldn’t tell if a couple clouds were blowing up, but they kept their manners and I’d launch again. So, the early morning cold front potentially had some delayed pulses that we saw later, or something way north around Boulder could have dropped out. It was between N and E and between 4 and 11mph I’d guess all day. Went home b/c I was too hungry to fly more and it just seemed like rain would be coming eventually.