Off to Golden for about 10 days of flying. My new harness had just come in (Advance Impress 2, had to wait for the small to be developed) so I stopped in Vernon to pick it up, and then on to Golden. When I arrived it was about 6:45pm, and there was a ride going up at 7pm, so I quickly switched harnesses and up the mountain I went.
Up on launch nice west cycles and people were still boating around. I got ready and tried to figure out how to launch a pod harness (my first one) without tripping on the lizard tail, but it turned out to not be a big deal at all.
Once out in the air I got settled and started to thermal. Made my way over the ridge that runs down to the valley and found a nice thermal which took me to the summit of Mt. 7, and then onwards to 3000m. It was nice smooth conditions (it was after 8pm by now), and seemed to be glassing off. Eventually I decided to fly out over the valley to make some in-flight harness adjustments, and figured I'd have about 20 minutes to do that on the ride out to the LZ.
But the glassing off was in full force and while I was busy fiddling with my harness, I was going up the entire time. Gentle 0.5-1 m/s stuff; I wasn't bothering turning in any of it but I stayed around 1800m over the valley for over 1 hour while I explored all the new developments in the town, the new cutblocks over on the Kicking Horse side of the valley, flying over the small lakes on the bench, etc etc. Total flight time was about 1.5 hours.
Eventually through spirals, wing overs, and generally goofing off I was able to get down and landed on the nice grass in the LZ. The harness was super-comfy and I felt right at home on it (and stayed nice and warm too, without the benefit of a flight suit!).
GEAR has undergone some changes since last year. There's now a new barn-like building, which is going to be used for meetings, movie nights, etc. and will likely be used as meet HQ for the Canadian PG Nats (which start Sunday). There is additional tent camping spots too at the meadow next to the warming hut. And of course free wireless right at the LZ so you can blog your flight as soon as you land!
Tomorrow is looking good weather-wise...sunny and 32+C. There was nice development through Rogers Pass today, so tomorrow should be unstable too, but not too much. Pilots are showing up in droves...the campground is filling up fast and when you drive through Golden you can see HG's on trucks all over the place, and cars full of PG gear. It's flying season in Golden!
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