Well the comp is over, but about 40 pilots stayed around to free-fly today. Skies were looking epic again and the winds were light (from the north this time).
Up on launch it was actually leeside on Between the Rocks, but get-offable. Big dust-devils ripped through on a regular basis; I can't remember a day when we've had to jump on our gliders so many times when a big one came through. Across the flats were big ones too...I took a photo of a monster one that went up to cloudbase, just past the rim, and we could see this from the Butte. Not the kind of day when you want to be low!
While I was in the launch lineup a pilot threw her reserve at cloudbase after getting a cravatte that was beyond her skill level to fix. Cloudbase at the time was about 3000m, so she had a long ride down, enough time to completely disable her glider, ball it in her lap, and a bunch of people to run down to greet her as she came in on the slope between Ants and Between the Rocks. She was unhurt.
Launched after that hoopla was taken care of and beamed to cloudbase too. Prior to launching I had this grand plan to do some big XC task, but once in the air I realized I'd rather do a small one, not too strenuous, that got me back to the LZ, since I was still tired and sore from yesterday's flight. I think many other people had the same idea as I saw many stick around "locally" (a relative term when flying Chelan).
Crossed over to the rim and got my low save just past the powerlines (maybe 300') and then up to cloudbase. Stayed pretty much there as I few SE to half-way between Douglas and Farmer, turned north and then angled my way back to the rim under a nice cloudstreet. Chris Amonson was with me for most of the flight. Back to the rim and crossed back to the Butte where I got up again, then back over to the rim to do a leisurely fly around the canyons until finally landing in the LZ. 52 km flat triangle and practically no wind, so today was definitely a triangle day.
Tracklog is at http://www.xcontest.org/world/en/pilots/detail:nicolemclearn