Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Dewdney Bench May 1

This was my first time at Al's new site in the Miracle Valley, I figured it would be the best option on an otherwise windy and north day.
Bench launch still looks a bit industrial but there is grass seed taking root.

Launch is quite low, around 300m, so you pretty much need to start thermalling right off launch if you want any chance of getting away easily.  The cycles weren't that frequent so I was patient for a good strong one, and was able to start turning right away over launch and no scratching needed.
The water level in Stave Lake is quite low, probably the dam was released a bit in anticipation of the mountain snow runoff coming in the next few days.  Lots of LZ's along the shoreline now!

Heading to Mt. St. Benedict was pretty straightforward although slow in places as the lift was a bit broken down low in spots.  If you could stay above 1000m you were OK, but once below you had to work to get back up towards cloudbase.  Once again the flats were working in addition to the mountains, and pilots were crossing west to the Steelhead side of things and then back.
Lots of marsh exposed at the south end of Stave Lake.

Cloudbase was low initially, maybe 1200m, but it slowly raised during the flight to around 1400m by 6pm.  But as cloudbase rose, so did the westerly winds, and by the time I landed at the Durieu school it was quite strong and punchy over the LZ and I expect the launch was blown-out.  I think the Fraser Valley sites may have been blown-out too as I didn't hear too much action at either Woodside or Bridal.
Al's new Flow Gliders XC Racer as the winds are picking up in the LZ.





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