A very good forecast had at least 10 of us interested in some more XC’s but the days started rather differently than we’d expected – high level cloud and quite a bit of lowish cu’s floating around looking like it would quickly over develop so enthusiasm waned somewhat as the morning went on.

Geoff King was first to crack and gave it a go closely followed by myself and then a steady stream of us all expertly towed out by Jeff Stillwagon.  

At first the cloudbase was around 3000ft amsl and the thermals were less than convincing so I just pottered around locally with the main aim of just staying in the air.  This was probably not a bad idea because very soon I glanced a glider very low down, although I couldn’t quite see its shadow, coming in from the west – it was Geoff who called that he was coming straight in on the East approach – and so he did – just!

Conditions gradually improved and to the south cloudbase was markedly higher at 4000ft so I flew over my house at Crickhowell not only to round the turnpoint there but mainly to check that Judith was doing the gardening and not just sunning herself and drinking Presecco.  She was!!!

Over towards the Beacons there were veils of cloud hanging down on the north side but to the south there was a good solid cloudbase up to 5000+ft which I managed to get under and fly down to the Black Mountain and Fan Hir.  Convergence of some kind or as we like to say in Wales Dai-vergence!!

My flight then basically returned to Crickhowell, up to Builth and back.

Meanwhile, as they say, John Clark was doing the TAL Triangle after a re-start. From what John said after the conditions were very different out east with cloudbase lower at only 3500ft and a lot of unreliable clouds and with the blue bits in between often the best places for lift. Consequently he had a bit of a struggle but did get around and post the first flight for the triangle this year.

Dave McCarthy got down to Usk Reservoir, near Llandovery and Mike T did part of a declared triangle of Cray – Mynd and back.

I met up with Chris Short near Builth but other than that the only others I met up with were a few paragliders flying from the east down the Usk Valley and into the Beacons.

Others out included Robbie, Tony B, Tony C, Phil S, Mike Rossiter, Greville, Robin H, Richard Robbins and Alex who followed a list of infamous pilots by landing out on Hay-on-Wye Common.

It was nice to see Anne Crowden at the club trying who was trying to shake off the cabin fever and sadly still suffering with her arm and shoulder.  

Finally there was some nice warm sunshine at the end of the day as we all slowly put stuff away and reflected on another good soaring day with a nice cup of tea. 

Martin P