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Gray Hill flying and directions.

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Re: Gray Hill flying and directions.

Postby Bill Cummings » Tue Mar 14, 2017 4:19 pm

I was looking at Google Earth and happened to zoom in on the Socorro, NM Airport and it looks like they might have a trike or hang glider using the airport:
Looks like the Soccoro Airport may have a trike..JPG
Looks like the Soccoro Airport may have a trike..JPG (38.51 KiB) Viewed 496 times

oops. Socorro I think it's spelled.
I hope they used a longer rope and used full flaps on that two engine jet for the tow up. :crazy: :roll:
OR
Is that the tail section of the jet as a result of a hard landing? :? :? :? :? :?
I'm sorry now for posting this. :oops:
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Gray Hill flying and directions. Blown out April 28 to 30th

Postby Bill Cummings » Sat Apr 22, 2017 2:04 pm

Robin Mike and Bill were tentatively looking to make our first trip of 2017 to Gray Hill west of Socorro, NM this coming weekend, -- But -
There seems to be a wind event planned for that time frame. That and a possibility of rain Sat and Sun.
Mike and I decided not to go. I have however started gathering my camping gear together. Mike and I will look ahead for the following weekend, May 5 through the 7th.
The average temperatures for that time of year have the Highs around 67º to 76º :thumbup:
The night time camping temperatures expected Lows will be 35º to 43º. :thumbdown:
Gray Hill Tower.JPG
Gray Hill Tower.JPG (37.86 KiB) Viewed 451 times

Check back on the first page of this "Gray Hill," thread to remind yourselves of the driving directions if you are free to go.
I'm also planning on taking my static tow equipment along since there are three good roads near Gray Hill.
I look at a Gray Hill trip as 60% camping and 40% flying.
For those that haven't been to Gray Hill it's not a soaring hill although it has been done. And so far no known XC flights have taken place.
It is a hill good for training flights, sled rides, and camping.
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Gray Hill flying and directions. 5-5-17

Postby Bill Cummings » Sun Apr 30, 2017 6:00 pm

Pilots and drivers,
Re: GRAY HILL.
Looking at the Windyty's three models for Fri May 5, 2017 through Monday May 8, 2017 from five days in advance things
are not looking good.
Too south and too windy, but there is a lot of time for forecast corrections in the next five days.
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Re: Gray Hill flying and directions.

Postby Bill Cummings » Wed May 03, 2017 8:16 pm

Only Friday May 5, 2017 looks good for Gray Hill.
Saturday, South at 49 mph.
If I lived in Albuquerque I would run down to Gray for one day of flying
but I'll be staying around Las Cruces this weekend.
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Gray Hill flying and directions. July 2017.

Postby Bill Cummings » Fri Jul 14, 2017 6:11 pm

Looking at the Gray Hill weather forecast for the week of July 16, 2017, a good chance of rain.
It's monsoon season and electrical storms over the mountains to the southwest of Gray Hill tend to be
plagued with fires started by lighting.
I'll be keeping an eye out for dryer weather and no smoke in the weeks to come since day time high temperatures average 86º
and night time temperatures are in the high 50º range in this high country. Nice for a weekend camping trip with foot launch
and towing.
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Re: Gray Hill flying and directions.

Postby Bill Cummings » Fri Sep 15, 2017 11:48 am

Here is a link to Magdalena NM WX station at their airport.
https://www.wunderground.com/personal-weather-station/dashboard?ID=KNMMAGDA8
So far the only fire close by isn't close by and is or was on the East side of I-25.
September on the average doesn't get too much rain and day and night time temperatures are in the comfort range for camp-outs.
We should keep an eye out for a trip to Gray Hill during September. :thumbup:
History.JPG
History.JPG (64.26 KiB) Viewed 212 times

Also check out current and history of wind at the VLA:
https://www.wunderground.com/personal-weather-station/dashboard?ID=KNMSOCOR9#history
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Re: Gray Hill flying and directions.

Postby Bill Cummings » Mon Oct 30, 2017 7:16 pm

Bill Cummings wrote:
Bill Cummings wrote:I'll post the directions to Gray Hill again but this time for 11/01/2017 to ---?

From Las Cruces, New Mexico, for two hours or a little over, I will be going north on interstate 25 to Socorro New Mexico.

I’ll take exit 147 and go to business 25 to the middle of Socorro and supply at WalMart. Also meet up with other glide heads.
Call on 151.925 WPRY420.

Coming from Albuquerque, (ABQ) New Mexico on Interstate 25 to Socorro NM it takes just under two hours driving time.
You then should take exit 150 to be on business 25.

From the north exit (150) business 25 is also hwy # 60 and California St.
You can take care of your business once on business 25 and also go shopping.

After meeting at WalMart for ice, food, and what not, we can head south and stay on Hwy # 60 as it goes west toward Magdalena, NM.
Magdalena will afford us a second opportunity should we absentmindedly fail to stock up or gas up.

Hwy # 60 if you follow it too far will take you to the Very Large Array if you wish to “Phone Home.” (long distance calls only.)

About 11 miles WSW of Magdalena hwy # 60 will bend it’s elbow and take you WNW.
From the elbow in the road you only go about 0.7 miles and go south on road 168. About two miles on 168 you will want to turn SE toward Gray Hill.
Gray Hill is Lat: 34.037940 Lon: -107.446247
The top of the hill is at 7,677’ msl. The LZ looks to be 400’ lower. (It's a training hill but sometimes soarable.
There is a Verizon cell tower on Gray Hill.
Retrieve fees are: one can of soda or beer.
Camping fees are about half of that.
All fees can be waived with a smile.
BLM land. Top and bottom.
_____________________________________________________________________________
Check weather:
https://www.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/findweather/getForecast?query=pws:KNMNEWME10
_____________________________________________________________________________
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jlnaa3GyUiM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t20B0It5mrA

Mike and I just talked and we are both free so we thought we would meet at Gray Hill Wednesday November 1, 2017 shortly after noon. We may stay into the weekend and do some towing as the wind turns SW
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Re: Gray Hill flying and directions.

Postby Bill Cummings » Wed Nov 01, 2017 9:33 pm

It’s 45* temp and Shaking the van it’s so windy. Mike Robin and I are in our vehicles rocking to sleep. It was 21 miles an hour in the LZ on the way in and it hasn’t let up. We are parked up top at the base of the tower where it’s windier and colder. Maybe the wind will die down tomorrow morning. that is all for tonight.
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Re: Gray Hill flying and directions.

Postby RobinHastings » Fri Nov 03, 2017 2:56 pm

By the time we had the Wills Wing Eagle 180 set up and checked out, the winds at launch were a steady 20 with gusts over 25. A little beyond my comfort level, and I had to get back to Las Cruces to teach, so I headed down the road at 10:45. However, I got a text from Bill later in the day, with great news - both he and Mike had managed to get some soaring flights on the glider. Enclosed is a photo of the glider in question. It's in great shape, and a great bargain for Mike. Way to go, guys! I wish I could have stayed to see it! (And to fly it.)
-Robin

GrayHill_WWEagle.JPG
Wills Wing Eagle 180 at the top of Gray Hill, looking northwest; Bill Cummings near the wingtip. Test flown later this day, Nov. 2, 2017.
GrayHill_WWEagle.JPG (74.4 KiB) Viewed 84 times
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Re: Gray Hill flying and directions.

Postby Bill Cummings » Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:35 pm

The Gray Hill expedition for 2017 was a bit late in the year for comfortable camping.
I think I’ll adjust my personal availability for camping at Gray Hill (Elevation 7,677’) to
between late May and early Sept.

Another plus would be for a three day forecast with the wind to be out of the WNW or NNE at 5 to 7 mph for the area surrounding Gray Hill.
The 14 to 15 mph forecast wind did turn out to be 21 mph on the flats as we drove in and he yarn on my vehicle’s radio antenna hung straight down as I was doing 21 mph on the SE road to the base of the hill.

What we thought was a good three day outlook only turned out to be good from 3:15 pm to sunset on Thursday.

We did get to test fly the 180 Eagle that Mike picked up in El Paso.
Mike had about 5 minutes and I had 9 minutes. No turns or tip flutter was detected on this older model glider which was not surprising due to the crispness of the sailcloth. It looked like there had hardly been any airtime or UV time but years of tube storage time.

The 180 Eagle didn’t tend to roll in tighter or fall out of a turn. I even did them one handed to show Mike how easy the glider was to fly while in a turn.
I think this will prove to be a fun thermaling glider.
Mike wasn’t all that impressed with the gliders penetration into the wind as I was but he is used to a T2C and I am comparing it to my Sport 2.
https://youtu.be/bXCYDl6M1i0

Placing the flag on the way up Gray Hill.JPG
Placing the flag on the way up Gray Hill.JPG (26.43 KiB) Viewed 74 times

Mike bagging it after his 1st test flight 11 02 2017 Gray Hill.JPG
Mike bagging it after his 1st test flight 11 02 2017 Gray Hill.JPG (36.93 KiB) Viewed 74 times
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