Title: Central California Soaring Club
Description: Central California Soaring Club provides training, tows, introductory glider flights and inexpensive membership. Private sailplanes welcome.
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Central California Soaring Club Central California Soaring Club Home of the Central California Soaring Club in Avenal California. Lessons, Intro glider flights, Tows Wednesday, July 27, 2016 SATURDAY, July 23, 2016. Hot, high, and lots of Cal Poly Members WEATHER Visibility: Unlimited Wind: North @ 10 kts Altitudes: 5100 msl. Jacob Mersino Time Aloft: More than an hour. Max Lift: 600 fpm Temperature: 104+ deg F Comment: Lift everywhere later in the afternoon. Tow pilot: Luciano "Looch" Worl. A good crowd arrived from Cal Poly and most of them flew either with Troy Wollman or with me. Troy was busy all day taking classmates for rides, most of the rides in Big Bird. It was quite hot on the field and for the first few hours of the day, the thermals weren't high enough to get to the cool air. Finally in late afternoon, three of us were aloft and we snagged a good strong thermal that took us over 5000 msl. It was good practice all thermaling together up that high. Fortunately, Andrew Palmer and I in Big Bird got to the thermal first, then watched as the other gliders, Orange Crush, and the 1-26, came over and got in it with us. Mario Pauda and Sergio Grajeda were in the Orange Crush, and Jacob Mersino was in the 1-26. We all maintained good, safe separation, and just at 5000 msl, Andrew and I left the thermal and went looking for other sources of lift. The air aloft was so cool it was hard to come down, knowing that one would descend into a furnace of air. Andrew and I were aloft an hour enjoying the cool while it lasted. Jacob Mersino in the 1-26, Mario Pauda & Sergio Grajeda in Orange Crush, and Andrew Palmer flying the Big Bird. They were closer than the photo shows but safely separated. Kudos to Richard Walker for getting there early and immediately starting work on the 1-26 to replace the wheel bearings, which he did and for that, all of us are grateful. Thanks a heap, Richard. He was helped by Sergio early on, getting the old wheel off the glider, and putting it back on. Thanks, Sergio. Andrew Palmer continues to progress and seems likely that he'll solo in just a few more short flights. There were a few new Cal Poly members at Avenal today, and perhaps we'll get an update on this story from someone who knew the names and curriculum of those present. Luciano Worl (Looch) did his usual strong towing today, hardly stopping for a rest. I know it must have been hot inside the tow plane but Looch didn't complain at all. This is another of several weekends that he has volunteered to tow and we are all thankful for his efforts. Great job, Looch. Peter and Jacob Mersino prepare to preflight the Orange Crush. A large group of Cal Poly students arranging to haul Big Bird to the launch area. I'm sitting in the front seat for a back seat refresher flight for Jacob Mersino. Jacob Mersino taking his sister-in-law, Elisabeth, for her first glider ride. Scott and Peter waiting. The Mersino family ready to launch Jacob and Elisabeth. Scott Mersino to the left. It was a good flight, 30 minutes, and Scott's wife, Elisabeth, enjoyed it all. Troy Wollman and Lucca finished their flight in Big Bird. Lucas waiting patiently on the patio for his turn aloft, with Troy Wollman. Mario Pauda in the back seat, Sergio Grajeda in the front seat, ready to launch. Tiffany getting a lesson from Troy Wollman on how to run a wing. Now it's Tiffany's turn to go up with Troy in Big Bird. Jacob Mersino flying the 1-26 enroute to an hour plus flight, and sharing a thermal with two other gliders. Tiffany learned how to run a wing and boy did she run it far. I thought she was going to the clubhouse. And she kept going even after this photo was taken. One of many good dust devils later on in the afternoon when thermals got us up over 5000 msl. Beth Hotchkiss finally woke up after a good midday nap. She's talking with Andrew Palmer. Big Bird landing on runway 31L after a nice long flight. Posted by Harold Gallagher at 4:37 PM No comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to Pinterest Monday, July 4, 2016 Saturday, July 2 WEATHER Visibility: 10+ miles Wind: NNE Altitudes: 9,500 Time Aloft: 5.2 hours Max Lift: l0+ kts Temperature: 107 Comment: Tow pilot: Allen White, Julie Butler Jim Rickey and Dan Gudgel started ops early in Hanford with towing the 2-33 back from it's annual inspection. When they arrived, Sergio was ready to take his two flights while before Dan left so there was an instructor on the field. By the time Pancho, Lizzy, and I arrived, many people were already hard at work getting their planes inspected or doing work. Martin and Carl were completing an inspection on CZ with Carl's friend Dhruv observing. Joe was getting his PW5 ready for it's inspection under a very nice blue awning that provided some much needed shade. Karl was getting ready to pull GD out of the box and work on the flarm. I dragged Pancho out in order to get the necessary work done on his trailer so it could get pulled back to the coast for more advanced trailer work. After getting that rolled into the hangar to escape the heat, we made a plan for the day. Sergio bought some sound beef and made some amazing burgers for us all while Dhruv helped me fuel the tow plane. Allen decided with not very many people flying, I could handle the tows and he went home to air conditioning. We had a very nice lunch on the patio with all mentioned above, plus Dennis Lyons, Larry Johnson, Richard Walker, Mario Padua, and probably somebody else that I forgot. Everyone got in position for tows at 1PM and off we went with Richard launching first in 181. It was pretty warm and there was a right crosswind, but we got a little height and turned parallel to the power poles and climbed slowly. Next up was Mario in the 1-26. I would call that marginal on obstacle clearance and I called ground to tell them to drag the 2-33 down for a 13 departure. I made one more tow off 31 with Karl in GD and switched ops to 13 for the last tow. I had dropped GD near red barn at 1100AGL and by the time we were ready to launch the 2-33, he was climbed through 5K on his way to Black. I never saw him again. See his story below. Carl's friend Dhruv had come out hoping for his first glider lesson. But, with the holiday weekend and at least one illness, there were no instructors on the field. So Carl graciously put away CZ and took him up in the 2-33. They released at 2K AGL and had a fabulous flight. I'm sure Dhruv will be adding a glider rating to his power rating soon. See Carl's story below. Back at the club, everyone was busy packing things up and getting ready to head out. The forecasted temperature of 99 was far surpassed. When I got in my car to leave, it indicated 107. No wonder we were not climbing fast today! I'm not as talented as Harold - so, there are no pictures of the day from me. Just imagine a lot of dust, everyone sweating profusely, and monster dust devils ripping through occasionally. Here is Karl's write up: Had kind of decided I would NOT fly on Saturday as it was very hot and very few were going flying, but since I had GD out of the box for some maintenance items figured what the hell might as well put it together and take a short flight and see if I got my Flarm working. Going north looked best on the RASP info Bart so kindly provided but there was a TFR over Curry Mountain (just east of Coalinga) due to a fire which was right in the way of the usual run north. The lift was amazing, caught a thermal between the solar farm and the crop circle and was in lift from there all the way to Black were I tanked up again and ran north and circled around the south side of the TFR and headed up near Hernandez Lake with all the EL fixes working as advertised. Coming back I went to the north side of the TFR heading back to Avenal for landing but literally was in lift most of the way back as the convergence was right down the Avenal valley. Hit a thermal so strong over the red barn (10-12kts) and was quickly back up near 10K so I decided to venture a ways southeast toward Dudley Ridge looking for some sink to get back to Avenal. The thermal heights were much higher than forecast and had I not have to take the long way home (Hwy 198 was closed because of the fire which looked like it was out) I might of stayed up a bit longer. And Carl's write up with pictures: One of my co-workers, Dhruv, was interested in a glider flight and start training towards an add-on glider rating, so he came with me to Avenal on Saturday to find out what soaring is all about. I was planning to fly my Discus while Dhruv started his training, but we ended up without any instructor on the field. Rather than let him bake in 100F+ heat on the ground while I flew, I took him up for a soaring flight in Orange Crush. We spent the first hour clawing up to 5,000 ft while I let Dhruv get a feel the 2-33's handling and how to thermal. We spotted a cluster of big dust devils east of the prison and headed that direction. Two strong thermals later, we found ourselves at 9,500 ft (and cold!)! From there, we went out to Black Mountain for some sightseeing and a couple more thermals. We made our way back towards the field and ran north and south a few times, with Dhuv doing a lot of the flying and really getting the hang of catching and centering thermals. As we approached the 4-hour mark at 6pm with strong lift still present, we decided Dhruv's first soaring flight should be Silver Badge duration and an Iron Butt Award contender flight. We then snagged another 6-8 knot thermal directly above a big dust devil in the crop circle; we were able to see down the center of it! After crossing the 5-hour mark, I showed Dhruv a couple stalls and a full slip to bleed off our remaining altitude before coming in to land. The OLC trace (complete with a big score for a 2-33, sure to make Alex proud): http://www.onlinecontest.org/olc-2.0/gliding/flightinfo.html?flightId=-1319479658 Lessons Learned: -A 5 hour first soaring flight is sure to hook anyone on learning to fly gliders -The best way to cool off from the Avenal summer heat is to climb high and stay there -The back seat of a 2-33 isn't a comfortable place for a 5 hour flight (but still fun!) Posted by Jules at 2:12 PM No comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to Pinterest Monday, June 27, 2016 SATURDAY, June 25, 2016, Hot and Rough; just a few members. WEATHER Visibility: Unlimited Wind: NW at 6 knots Altitudes: 5100 msl - Jim Rickey Time Aloft: 2 hours - Jim Rickey Max Lift: 8 knots Temperature: 100 deg F. Comment: Slow day, few members, more training. Tow pilot: Allen White, Jim Rickey, Yutaka Buto, Harold Gallagher CLICK ON ANY PHOTO FOR LARGE SIZES OF ALL PHOTOS. LATE NEWS FLASH!!!!!! TROY WOLLMAN PASSED THE CHECKRIDE FOR HIS PRIVATE PILOT'S LICENSE GLIDERS. CONGRATULATIONS TROY. Troy's rollout on his second checkride flight. Troy Wollman and Dan Gudgel after Troy's successful checkride for his Private Pilot's License - Glider. _____________________________________________________________________________ It wasn't an exceptionally busy day here at Avenal. Most of the flights consisted of training in both Schweizer 2-33's. Joaquin Riviera, Carsten Moeller, Sergio Grajeda, and Troy Wollman made most of the training flights in those aircraft. The high performance sailplanes that were flown today included the DG100, Harry Davies' newly purchased Libelle (from Moab, UT) and our own 1-26 flown by Mike Paoli. Allen White arrived this morning and flew several tows just to keep his hands on the yoke. The heat takes its toll so Allen passed off the towing to Yutaka, and later to Jim Rickey. I towed only three times. It was hot today and thermal heights were mostly 4500 msl, with one brief fling at 5100 msl by Jim Rickey. At least getting above about 2500 msl proved to be worth it because of the cooler air. The air was very rough and pushed the 2-33's around on tow quite a bit. The newer students struggled with tow position and the heat in the cockpit at lower altitudes made for a sometimes queasy flight. All worked out OK but this time of year, with temps over 100 deg F, makes for uncomfortable training flights. It was a lot warmer than that on the ground since the runway dirt surface was very hot to the touch. Joaquin Riviera brought his son, Joaquin, Jr, along and the young boy was a model of good behavior on the patio. Joaquin, Sr, and I flew two training flights and he continues to progress towards his solo flying. Troy Wollman and I did three good prep flights in anticipation of his checkride on Monday. We also spent three additional hours in preparing for the oral portion of the checkride. When I finally left Avenal at 7:15 pm, I felt that Troy was ready for the testing. He had scored a 92% on his written exam and that was a good indicator of the work he did on his own in preparation. So I felt he had an excellent chance to pass the checkride for his Private Pilot License - Glider. We wish him luck on Monday. Finally, Jim Rickey went aloft in Big Bird just after Yutaka Buto had flown the 1-26. Yutaka's flight was a bit short since there was sink everywhere the lift wasn't. It made finding lift and staying in it a rather interesting challenge. Somehow Jim Rickey manages to find lift where the rest of us can't, and today was no exception. There he was, one moment looking like he was entering the pattern, the next minute he was so high we couldn't visually spot him easily. Nice going Jim. Joaquin Riviera running the wing for Sergio Grajeda. Carsten Moeller flying several pattern tows landing on runway 7. Harry Davies about to fly his newly purchased Libelle for the first time. Carsten Moeller finishing one of his pattern tows, landing on ruway 7. Harry is ready, wings up, signal given to the tow plane and off he went. Good takeoff, no discernible PIO, in good position, and had a good flight. Jeff Richardson flying the DG100 just to keep his skills sharp without too much time off. MikePaoli flying the 1-26 instead of his Libelle because it's easier to get ready to fly. Troy Wollman in Big Bird for his last practice flights before his checkride. Troy on takeoff still over runway 31R behind the tow plane. One day soon we need to clear this area for a longer takeoff run on runway 31R. Two of the three club workhorses, the Orange Crush and the 1-26. Troy downwind for landing runway 13R. Troy's last flight before his checkride on Monday, June 27th. We wish him luck. Sergio Grajeda on final one of his many pattern tows in the Orange Crush. A good pattern and landing on runway 13L for Sergio. Jim Rickey, the amazing thermal seeker, finally lands after about 2 hours aloft. Jim's nice landing and roll out right up to the tie down area. The last flight of the day. That's all folks, see you next weekend when the weather will still be hot and above the 100 mark. Cheers, Harold Gallagher Posted by Harold Gallagher at 5:05 PM 1 comment: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to Pinterest Tuesday, June 21, 2016 SATURDAY, June 18, 2016. Training and demo flights. A few high performance flights. WEATHER Visibility: Unlimited Wind: Mostly from the NW at 5-7 kts Altitudes: Above 5000 msl Time Aloft: More than an hour for most. Max Lift: 6-8 knots Temperature: A pleasant mid 80's. Comment:Only three high performance sailplanes, but training and demo flights. Tow pilot: Dan Gudgel, Don Flinn, Alex Caldwell, Jim Rickey _________________________________________________________________________________ CLICK ON ANY PHOTO FOR A LARGER SIZE OF ALL PHOTOS. It was another weekend when few members showed up even though the lift was good and enough to do some cross country flying. Andrew Ouellet arrived along with a beautiful friend, Phoebe Brown, who, surprisingly, is a licensed balloon pilot. She travels the circuit from Albuquerque, to Phoenix, to Northern California, to anywhere else where a balloon festival is operating. She had fun flying in a glider for the first time but remains a dedicated balloonist. After sending me some photos, Phoebe allowed as how maybe she "may have a new found love for a different form of flight." She'd probably make an excellent glider pilot as well. See the photos at the end of the published photos for June 18th. Clark Woolf flew another series of pattern flights in preparation for what might be his solo flights sometime in July, just after his 14th birthday. It continues to look likely that he will solo then since his progress has been excellent. Dan Gudgel was out early with a Lemoore pilot, checking him out for towing duties. Jim Bell was back again today looking for a much better flight than last Saturday when the sink was so bad, we almost terminated the tow early. This time, Jim got the ride he was looking for and over an hour later, he was a bit tired since he did most of the thermalling. But he was also quite pleased with the performance and might just sign up for lessons and a club membership. David Deniz brought his son, Bryston, out for a gift flight. They arrived early but seemed to enjoy just being at the launch end watching the activity going on. Bryston did get a chance to fly Big Bird, although the lift wasn't as good as hoped for. Later on in the day, the lift was extensive and the thermals quite strong, but he missed a bit of that lift. Still, the flight was long enough, and his flying good enough to make his day. Mario Pauda was back again today, flying the 1-26 and just enjoying himself. Bart Klusek returned after nearly two months away and flew the Russia. He was impressed with how clean and neat he found the glider just before assembly and complimented whoever flew it last. That was nice. Joe Anastasio flew the PW-5 long enough, far enough, and high enough to have made the trip over from Atascadero worthwhile. Andrew Ouellet and Alex Caldwell flew a one-hour flight for Andrew's BFR requirement. Then Alex posted the flight on the OLC and within the region, did fairly well, coming in 11th. Sergio Grajeda flew several flights and now is talking about preparing for his written exam. But today, we shared a thermal with him, just below us while Jim Bell and I were having fun in Big Bird. Carsten Moeller flew with Don Flinn several times and then Don graciously offered to tow for awhile. Clark Woolf practicing for his solo flight, sometime in July. Clark moving the glider back to the launch area for his next pattern flight. Sherry waits patiently, while Carsten Moeller, David Deniz and son, Bryston chat about flight. Phoebe Brown, Troy Wollman and Sergio Grajeda wait for the tow plane. Phoebe and Troy just sitting around chatting about Phoebe being a licensed balloon pilot. Sherry, David, and Bryston right after Bryston's first glider flight. Mario Pauda nearly ready to launch in the 1-26 with help from Bart Klusek. Mario, like most of us, just really enjoys flying Casper the 1-26. Bart Klusek returns after being absent for a month and a half. The tow plane has returned and now Mario is ready for what turned out to be a rather short first flight. One of the biggest thermals formed right at the solar farm installation office. And a few minutes later, another thermal formed in the same area. Jim Bell had a demo flight last week but due to massive sink, it didn't last long. This time was different. We were aloft over an hour, and Jim did most of the thermalling, and did it well. Jim caught on to the idea of circling in lift and worked hard most of the hour in flight. The variometer shows only 400 feet per minute up but we experienced much more. Mario Pauda on another launch in Casper the 1-26. Phoebe Brown's photos submitted on June 22nd: Phoebe Brown hasn't taken her first glider ride so maybe she can be converted yet. As an experienced balloon pilot, Phoebe isn't convinced yet that flying gliders is in her future. Bryston Deniz ready for his first glider ride, and taking the controls off tow. Don Flinn doing the towing for a portion of today's flights. Phoebe is looking forward to this flight with Andrew Ouellet and maybe she will like soaring after all. That's all for now, folks, and we hope to see many of you out here next weekend. Harold Gallagher Posted by Harold Gallagher at 6:01 PM No comments: Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to Pinterest Older Posts Home Subscribe to: Posts (Atom) Pages Home Membership Info Aircraft Fleet Soaring Forecasts and Current Weather SPOT Tracking Avenal on the OLC Contact Information Nearby Soaring Locations Online Scheduler Archived SoarAvenal.com Webcams Blog Archive ▼ 2016 (29) ▼ July (2) SATURDAY, July 23, 2016. Hot, high, and lots of C... Saturday, July 2 ? June (4) ? May (7) ? April (3) ? March (6) ? February (5) ? January (2) ? 2015 (46) ? December (1) ? November (5) ? October (4) ? September (4) ? August (9) ? July (2) ? June (4) ? May (6) ? April (5) ? March (2) ? February (2) ? January (2) ? 2014 (38) ? December (2) ? November (3) ? October (2) ? September (1) ? August (3) ? July (1) ? June (3) ? May (9) ? April (5) ? March (2) ? February (5) ? January (2) ? 2013 (23) ? December (2) ? November (4) ? October (2) ? September (5) ? August (4) ? June (1) ? May (2) ? April (2) ? March (1) ? 2012 (6) ? December (3) ? November (1) ? September (2) Contributors Alex Caldwell Bart Ethan Ronat Harold Gallagher Jeff Richardson Jim Rickey Jules Morgan Hall Morgan Peter Sahlberg Follow by Email Picture Window template. Powered by Blogger.