Having finished off the club pilot course the week before it was time to put away the training books and get stuck into some Xc flying. this week we were joined by old regulars Liam, Nick and Harry and the new face of Ian out from Sussex. The week got off to a blinding start with all the...
The week got off to a blinding start with all the lads climbing out from the westerly on Lijar and immediately heading over the back. Liam showed the advantage of local knowledge by heading off to Zahara where he landed and headed up to the bar over looking the lake for some sunset beers whilst waiting for the retrieve. Nick headed off and covered most of Andalucia by air looking for his end goal of Ronda. It turns out he had flown over Ronda not realising it and then made a very impressive cross wind flight down the valley still looking for Ronda eventually landing along the valley to Teba. Ian climbed out very well and boated around the south east valley before hitting some head wind and returning to the south east landing field for a retrieve and cold beer. Harry had a great flight around the westerly valley for 2 hours before landing to re-fill his camel back.
The next day we headed up again in the afternoon ready for round 2. It was a more tricky flight this time as the pressure had gone up and there was a much more established inversion so it took a bit more patience to climb and penetrate, which the lads did very well and once again we saw Nick hopping over the back this time sure he new where Ronda was this time he did very well making it to insight of Ronda but hitting a head wind he decided to put it down near Ronda la Vieja of course next to a bar. The rest of the lads decided to hone their thermalling skills and stay out in front of take off climbing to around 7000ft at times.
Tuesday we were joined by our ex Ep and Cp paragliding student Peter who had been able to take a mid week break from his job as an airline pilot to join us for a cheeky bit of thermalling and sunshine which had been a rare sight back in the Uk due to all the rain and strong winds. It was lovely to see Peter getting stuck into thermalling over in El Bosque where he had made his first high Elementary pilot high flight less than a year ago. Liam and Ian showed very good thermalling skills always staying up for well over an hour at least even in some tricky stable conditions.
Nick was now buzzing after pulling off his first SAT whilst up at 6000ft. Its a manouver he has been practicing for by getting really good at spirals and he pulled off a perfect SAT to the applause of the landing field. Sadly after 2 days we had to say good bye to Peter again as he had to head back to the rain and wind of blighty and leave the 35 degrees behind.
For the rest of the boys we were back to lijar for the final flight of the week and again Nick was straight up and off over the back. He did very well being stuck on the front face of the twin peaks waiting nearly an hour to get a good climb out. His patience was rewarded and he climbed up and away again taking it over to Ronda la Vieja where he landed next to the bar he was quickly becoming a local in.
Well done to all the lads for some great thermalling with the average climb anywhere from 4000ft-7000ft in not always easy conditions given the high pressure that had snuck in. With the long hours of day light we get to bask in here, there once again was a nice variety of flying to be had at some of our most beautiful flying sights around Andalucia. In the middle of the day we got to take a break from thermalling and head down to the swimming pool or lake for some larking around in the cool water and some very strange under water Gopro pictures.
Thanks to all the lads for some great laughs and very bad jokes see you again next time.