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Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby RobinHastings » Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:48 am

THE 2018 COLUMBUS DAY GATHERING!

I have the Cox Field landing zone in Alamogordo reserved for us this coming weekend, Friday October 5th through Sunday, October 7th. Come on down and fly! The forecast is for southwest winds all weekend, straight in to the Dry Canyon launch. (And La Luz, too, for that matter.) Friday and Saturday are forecast to be light in the morning and moderate in the late afternoon. (This sometimes leads to glassoff conditions in the evening.) On Sunday the winds are supposed to be pretty strong, all day. On Monday, there's a possibility of precipitation, depending on which model is presenting it. In any case, I plan to be in the landing zone on Friday morning, ready to assist any and all who want to fly. No fees, no contests, just come on over and have a good time. I'll try to arrange a barbecue for Saturday evening, at least - and Sunday, if the winds allow it. Hope to see you this weekend!
-Robin Hastings
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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby Nate » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:53 am

Keep us updated on WX. Wharton is starting to look very soggy yet NM is looking like it may be windy...... :wtf: :crazy:

I don't have a good read on NM wx. Let us know what days look like a blowout (Sunday is looking breezy :? on NOAA)
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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby RobinHastings » Tue Oct 02, 2018 2:45 pm

Hi, Nate. The weather models are not consistent for Sunday, Oct. 7th, but I'm pretty sure that Friday and Saturday will be pretty good days for flying. Go up to launch on the early side of things, if possible. Sunday might be a blowout - but Windyty shows (for unknown reasons) the winds being moderate in the first part of the day, then shifting abruptly to northwest. Monday should be just like Friday and Saturday, though. Some models show rain on Sunday night, others do not. I'll know more as the weekend approaches - regardless, I plan to be there on Friday morning, ready to help whoever needs it.
-Robin
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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby Nate » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:39 am

I have work lined up in Mentone, TX tomorrow - only 4hrs from Cox Field.

I'll be there Friday AM with a wing and an itch to fly. :thumbup:
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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby RobinHastings » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:29 pm

Hi, Nate! Here's my take on the weather for this weekend. Really, I've seen worse - and we STILL got to fly!

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 5 through MONDAY, OCTOBER 8, 2018:
This is the weekend for the Columbus Day Gathering in Alamogordo, and it does not look unflyable. You may want to be launching early, though, most days. Overall, I expect it to be warm (high temperatures in the 80 to 90 degree range) dry (the rains should pass north of us, and east) and windy from the southwest. Or at least windier than we've been seeing lately. Friday, Saturday and Monday expect winds from the southwest, moderate to strong, topping out in the afternoon at 12 to 15 on the ground, all over our area. Sunday, same direction, but a good deal stronger. Probably, that day, about 18-20 mph in El Paso on the ground, and stronger elsewhere, especially in Deming and Las Cruces. On Friday, then, you should find it flyable at Dry Canyon, La Luz, Agave Hill, Nelson's Launch and Magdalena Rim. Just time it carefully so you grab the wind you want before it gets stronger. I would also look for a possible glassoff at Dry Canyon, as those often happen on fairly windy days. Saturday, more of the same. Sunday, the jetstream finally comes in with a full commitment, and I expect the afternoon winds to be a blowout - there might be some flying earlier, though, at Dry Canyon and La Luz. Agave Hill and Nelson's Launch should see milder winds than elsewhere, but those are PG sites and it might get too strong for PG's even there. Monday looks a good deal milder in the forecasts, with winds in the 10-12 mph range on the ground from the south-southwest in Alamogordo, making Dry Canyon a good place to fly. In summary, I think we'll have a pretty good fly-in, especially if everyone is willing to do something fun on the ground (a hike to Bridalveil Falls, for instance, or visiting Cloudcroft) on Sunday. Hope to see a lot of you in the Cox Field LZ on Friday and Saturday, at very least!
-Robin
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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby RobinHastings » Sun Oct 07, 2018 4:33 pm

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 7, 2018:
Despite some winds and rain and thunder, we had a pretty good fly-in this weekend. About half a dozen pilots showed up and got their feet off the ground - though one was a very brief launch to a crash. (A downtube broken, and no injury.) It was too windy for paragliders, but Steve Crye came out anyway and was a great help. The best flight was Nate Wreyford's on Friday, when he stayed up 4 hours and went 20 miles south and then back to the landing zone. Juan Mira had his first soaring flight and longest ever, getting half an hour at Dry Canyon and a fine landing to finish it off. Chris Chaney, Tony Conger, Andy Belk, and Brian Reindl all showed up as well. Weather on Friday was moderately windy, and gusty in the evening (when the blown launch occurred). Thunderstorms occurred early Saturday morning, but though the wind blew on Saturday it was not unflyable. Chris Chaney had a good flight in the early afternoon, for 45 minutes, and Brian, Andy and Nate flew just before sunset. Stever Crye, despite an obviously non-PG day on Saturday, arrived anyway to help out wherever he could. So did our friend Finis Miller - though his offer to be hang driver for the day did not pan out. My 4WD truck had to have its rack (as in rack and pinion steering) replaced, but Andy and Brian shuttled everybody's gliders up to launch. I love the people we meet in this sport! (They also took up a collection to help me pay for the truck repairs - these are the kind of friends you can never thank enough.) We had a fine barbecue on Saturday evening and good visiting until 11:00 pm, plus guitar and singing, and some telescopic observations of several planets. Sunday was far too windy to fly, so several of us had a nice breakfast and visit at Rustic Cafe before saying our goodbyes until the next gathering - hopefully with somewhat milder winds. Keep in touch!
-Robin
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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby Bob Kuczewski » Sun Oct 07, 2018 5:16 pm

Nate wrote:I'll be there Friday AM with a wing and an itch to fly. :thumbup:

FOUR HOURS!?!   :shock:

20 MILES!?!   :o

That was a pretty serious "itch" Nate!!    Nice flying.   :salute:

Now we just need to get Steve some hang gliding training for those windy days.   :thumbup:

Great teamwork RGSA!!!!!

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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby Nate » Tue Oct 09, 2018 7:22 am

Every time I go to RGSA country, I wonder why I don't go more often. Great sunsets, amazing skies, and the nicest folks.

Robin has helped so many of us have great flying in RGSA country by guiding and shuttling at fly ins and during other visits over the years. Steve was also very giving of his time in shuttling, etc plus when I landed after 4hrs and didn't have a beer in my ice chest, his advance planning kept me from going without. :thumbup:

Friday and Saturday were fun flights. I especially enjoyed the XC on Friday. Such a challenge pushing into a 20+ mph wind. A good exercise in being selective with lift - "light lift with strong drift is no gift". Thankfully, there was strong lift and more importantly, when pushing upwind, lift lines that enabled me to push a mile or so out front of launch and hit 12,700ft. :thumbup: It took me many many attempts and close to 2.5hrs to get out of the box, jumping forward up to Long Ridge. From there is was amazing flying, looking down at the 2500-3000ft cliffs spilling off into the desert or looking over at the ponderosa and alpine vegetation.

You can see a track here, https://www.livetrack24.com/track/1240075 There is a link to open in Google Earth. I flew over and tagged that last mesa but it does not show on this track from my iphone. It does on my instrument track. The instrument track as a Google Earth file should be attached.

Video to follow but I tried to get fancy, using the GoPro remote which does not work well. GoPro will be getting an ugly email :srofl:

I can't thank everyone enough. It was great to meet Steve, Brian, and Andy. Always good to catch up with Chris and Tony - doesn't happen near enough.
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Re: Columbus Day Weekend is this coming weekend

Postby RobinHastings » Tue Oct 09, 2018 1:46 pm

Here are some pictures from our weekend in Alamogordo. Thanks again to everyone for coming out to see us!
-Robin

Dry_Cyn_Launch_Oct5_2018.JPG
At launch on Friday, October 5, 2018.
Dry_Cyn_Launch_Oct5_2018.JPG (85.85 KiB) Viewed 685 times


JuanTonyNate&Chris_Oct5_2018.JPG
Juan Mira, Tony Conger, Nate Wreyford, Chris Chaney. Friday, October 5, 2018.
JuanTonyNate&Chris_Oct5_2018.JPG (49.48 KiB) Viewed 685 times


2018_10_05_ChrisLanding.jpg
Chris Chaney landing mid-day on Saturday, from Steve Crye filming courageously in the landing zone.


20181005_ChrisFlaring.jpg
Chris flaring for a perfect landing.


Andy&Brian_Oct6_2018.JPG
Andy Belk and Brian Reindl following successful flights on Saturday, October 6.
Andy&Brian_Oct6_2018.JPG (72.01 KiB) Viewed 685 times


Steve_grilling_Oct6_2018.JPG
Steve Crye, Saturday evening grillmeister.
Steve_grilling_Oct6_2018.JPG (71.66 KiB) Viewed 685 times


Finis_Miller_Oct6_2018.JPG
Finis Miller, ace driver and consumer of fine cuisine...
Finis_Miller_Oct6_2018.JPG (37.59 KiB) Viewed 685 times
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