Bulletin February 2014

Carrying on from the upbeat tone of January’s bulletin we still have the weather improving to look forward to and that now seems to be happening, however the majority of February was appalling, what better time than to repack reserves! Apologies for the delay in getting this bulletin out, Vicky and I took a short holiday to Maderia for the last week of February and I have been catching up with work.


The Annual Kernow Re-Pack.

This year saw a change of venue prompted by the successful December meeting at The Classic Airforce based at Newquay.

We had a good turnout of local and Devon pilots. Most were regular attendees of the re-pack and had been several times before. Without their support we wouldn’t be able to have a yearly re-pack, so thanks to all. Bill Morris was on good form as usual, aided by Greg Emms and a couple of ‘Morris’s Minnions’ who were under tuition. Nice to see a few of the hangy boys turning up, Bill making a special effort to speak slowly and not using  long words for their benefit. The day started with a brief description of the various types of reserve that were available, with an appraisal of the pros and cons of each. Then, a series of videos illustrating incidents that resulted in reserve deployments. The message was clear.. Know where your reserve handle is, how to get to it, what to do with it, and, as highlighted with this video here. (link) throw your reserve no matter how low you are. There followed a demonstration of the re-packing procedure, before we adjourned for lunch in the museum cafe. After lunch we spread ourselves around the hanger in small groups and did our own reserves. I teamed up with Steve W and a Devon chap called Chris as we all had Gin reserves. No problems were found apart from a couple of missing bands on Chris’s bridle link. So that’s it till next year when we hope to have a zip wire rigged up in another hanger.

The following comment was submitted so thanks Andy for the time taken to organize this it has clearly been very much appreciated and at least one more pilot is a safer pilot.

Just a quick email to say thank you very much for the repack event at
Newquay. It was my first repack event and I think I gained a great deal
from it and am now not so worried about what is inside my reserve
deployment bag!…and am now more confident it might actually work if
ever needed.

The venue was marvellous. I and a couple of friends were really pleased
to have the opportunity to look around the museum and talk to some of
the volunteers.

And of course we didn’t miss a flyable day.

Thanks to everyone who helped to make the event such a success.

Chris Leaver


DSCF0478Tony, Ray and Greg

In the midst of the bad weather Tony N has been in Australia.

After surviving a Dust Devil a few days ago I managed a 6hour plus flight to my own declared goal of Warialda from Mount Borah.
It was a light SE at the beginning and as I passed Barraba and entered the Bingara valley it became slowly more East and cross, I was topping out at 8668ft on a blue day and had some wind shear and it was bloody cold in my rashie and thin flying suit making me shiver at …times, it was 38 on the ground and was nice to get low occasionally to warm up. There was a weak dusty slap bang in the middle of the Bingara valley at the North end so I crossed over to the East side to make sure I missed it. Found a nice climb over the town and the wind was now East North East and the going was slow.
As I left Bingara I ate a couple of snakes, the wind became more North East and I had to sacrifice distance points to achieve my goal of flying to Warialda. I drifted West in the climbs and then had to fly head wind sometimes less than 18kph to push upwind to my goal. Found a water pump to show me wind direction and landed with no need to flare. First thing I was busting for a pee just about to have one when I noticed ants were streaming up my lines and all over the wing. Quickly bundled up and ran a few metres with the glider away from the nest and finally had that long awaited pee. Quick nip into Warialda to find the only pub and treated myself and retrieve driver (Bozena) to a good Aussie steak. The barman kindly gave us free coffee for the trip home over 145kms (300km round trip) and told us to watch out for roo’s on the road, arrived home just after 11pm. Was flying the BGD Tala with no Pod and no use of the speed bar. Flying a new harness I was tipped slightly to one side the whole flight as I have not adjusted it to my liking yet and the buckle from my chest strap kept pressing my vario button. Usual numb fingers but only on my left hand today. Very happy with this flight. Will post a bit of video but did not film much as the air was rough as rats nearly all the way. I have saved myself a bottle of Eagle Mountain wine to bring home as the last year at Sydney airport we had a bit of a fight and I lost my prize.


 Tony and Pesky Dust Devil.

Clouds talk

Ray, wise owl of the club very kindly sent the following on clouds (which we have been seeing a lot lately.

Clouds play an important part in the life of a glider pilot , very handy for every day use, but essential when flying , and will be required in the pilots exam .  Mainly covered in the Meteorology section , but I want to give an extra insight  to the classification of clouds.  To make every one more familiar with the names and what can be expected to happen from what we see in the sky every day . The ability to predict the weather through the behaviour of clouds is a  skill that is worth the effort .  Cloud names are in Latin, , keep a diary of your daily weather observations.  Cloud cover  is  measured in eighths only use 8 ths,  4/8 not ½.  The current world meteorology organization classification of principal cloud genera is               High cloud base usually above 6km/> 20,000 CIRRUS  (C) CIRROCUMULUS (Cc)

Medium cloud base usually between 2&6km/6,500 &20,000ft ALTOCUMULAS (Ac)   ALTOSTRATATUS (As) NIMBOSTRATUS  (Ns)  

Low cloud  base usually below 2km/<6,500ft  Stratocumulus (Sc)       Stratus (St)          Cumulus (Cu) Cumulonimbus (Cb).

Cloud height is an important factor and is related to the name, so try to judge height when making your first observation to help predict the weather for the next hour or two with hopes of extending the time to all day. The weight of a cloud can be many tons, but in its evaporated state rises up.

 A Cu nim (Cb) is very dangerous do not go anywhere near.  I have been in a 4 engine heavy transport aircraft, as flight engineer, with the rate of climb off the clock, 4 throttles closed and the stick fully forward and  could not get out of it until the top .    

The term chaotic sky refers to a mixture of cloud difficult to sort (don’t worry too much) look for

cloud speeds and swirling  mass , check for gusts keep an eye on the wind sock.

The Atmosphere (from the Greek atmos) is a band of gas encircling the earth 500km (300 miles)

made up of 5 layers each with its own distinct temperature profile. The Troposphere extends

From the surface to around 20k (12miles) above the earth where most cloud and weather occur.

And in which the temperature decreases at the average rate of 6.5degs Kilometre of ascent

Falling to a Min of -60 deg by the time it reaches the Tropopause.

Weather assessment is a huge subject and needs to be continued with after your exam ,don’t  

be tempted to fly in cloud on a low day. The greatest single cause of accidents is flying in poor weather conditions, especially strong winds.



Ceiling & Visibility are OK .   specifically(1) there are no clouds below 5,000 ft 

 above aerodrome  level (AAL) or Min sector altitude  (whichever is higher)& no cumulonimbus (2) visibility at least10k  (6 statute miles ) & (3) no currant or forecast significant weather

 such as precipitation ,thunder storms shallow fog , or low drifting snow .CAVU

Ceiling & Visibility unrestricted.   Indicating a ceiling of at least 10,000 ft. & visibility ofat least 10 miles , ideal flying conditions .


Dave and Michelle Langley celebrate the birth of a baby boy, born 25/2/14  at Trelisk weight 7lb 5oz no name decided upon yet.

BambinoTony P bumps into Dave Stevens on his travels, I’m amazed they let him in Australia has very strict quarantine controls and Dave looks like he’s smuggling a few pies!