The task committee decided to go big for this next-to-last day with a 120km task that criss-crossed the mesa to Saucos, La Pila, past Llano, Santa Maria, and finally the lake. When I heard it was 120km and involving a east-->west crossing of the mesa, my heart sank, as in all my years of trying this mesa crossing against the wind, I've only accomplished it once. But, maybe this would be the second time :)
Anyways, heading to Saucos was pretty uneventful against a quarter-headwind (it was NW up high) and coming back at least to Mesa-D was also fine. The problem came with crossing to Sacamacate from Mesa-D...on the mesa it was SW, not NW, which meant it was an uphill and upwind slog to get to the other side.
Other pilots with more balls sailed overhead and apparently made it over the trees and to the Penon side, where they presumably flew many more km's. From the preliminary results, it appeared if you could make it over the edge of the mesa you were golden for at least another 50-60km.
Did I mention how much I hate Sacamacate?
On the flip side I did have a beautiful afternoon waiting for retrieve, working on my tan and enjoying the last bits of warmth and sun before I head back to Canada on Sunday. Retrieve took a while since the regular road to Sacamacate is apparently closed so I eventually had to get a local to drive me down the little-known "back way".
It would be nice to break my streak of not making it back over the mesa against the wind, but unless we try this again tomorrow it'll have to wait for another year :)