#449 Snowflake

Today was supposed to be the day that Dan Kamisar resumed flight so the bunch of us agreed to meet at Snowflake by the crack of 9am. 

I had planned to get up extra early and fly Titan then head out to Snowflake but common sense prevailed and I found myself setting up at Snowflake well before dawn.  I only had the aft strobe working but I figured that I would be able to see any oncoming traffic.  I set-up in the dark and launched as soon as there was enough light to make an emergency landing The wind was very light out of the WSW almost in line with the SW runway but not exactly.  The first attempt was aborted when the wing fell off to the right because I tried to steer it onto the runway a little too soon. I re-set without all the micro alignments and launched.  I had to use some brake to get up because there wasn’t allot of nice runway to work with and I think the brake input I was using to steer the wing helped.

Climbing to 600 feet the the air started to get rowdy, (about a 3 on the bump scale) and the winds were 15 mph pulsing to 20.  Even so…it was a good flight… I tolerated the mixing air and practiced modulating the motor.  It comes up slow but smoothly and I’m beginning to get comfortable flying low again.  It’s interesting that I was moving back and forth between the upper and lower toggles, I didn’t notice any back pain and the wing absolutely feels better with the top toggle or when the trimmers are out…the bottom.  An hour after launch the gang started to arrive and when I landed everybody except Dan was setting up.  Apparently he was still having some issues with his new rig and opted out.  I landed a little after 8am, the winds had picked up but were still manageable. 

John Sieb, Paul Dillon and Mike flew while I watched with the new trike pilot Doug Michell.  He is taking it slowly and planned to taxi rather than fly this morning.  John went high and away while Mike stayed low and did the yank and bank boogie.

netting eater

Paul Dillon landed out when his netting got caught in the prop.  It stripped the netting off clean with no damage to the cage but it did wind up in the hub and kill the engine.  The best thing about Snowflake is the whole area is an emergency LZ… Paul landed without incident.

Paul Dillon

The winds continued to build, pulsing to 12 mph so we stood around and chatted. till a little after 11am.
Dan …Sorry you couldn’t make it but it might have been for the best.  I’m sure you want your first flight after the incident to be a cakewalk.

Author: JoeO

Powered Paraglider pilot since 2005

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