Thursday, April 17, 2008

Cuesta Ridge - April 17th

My XC Skies forecast indicated that today might be good at the Cuesta Ridge. . . It was. The winds were light from the SSW and lift was 400-600fpm. up to 4000'. I launched around noon and promptly dropped 300' below launch before finding my first good climb of the day. Patrick & Eric launched about then and we all flew around the ridge. I was higher & able to get some good high climbs over the high ground, so I pressed NW along the ridge. HERE is my flight.

Soon I was farther North than I've ever flown from the Cuesta launch and in excellent shape at around 4000'. The climbs were very good along a line of convergence along the ridge & I was finally looking at the choice of either pressing out towards Highway 1 (and an easy landing and retrieve) or crossing Highway 41 and potentially landing in the Hwy 41 corridor. I was a bit worried about the winds in the steep, narrow Hwy 41 corridor, so I opted to head out front to the small hills next to Hwy 1 & towards Morro Bay.

My GPS was not supplying me with wind velocity information today (bugger!) so I was estimating 5-10 kts. of wind from the SW at altitude & W near the surface. I found some weak lift & ridge lift as I got low & worked out to about 1/2 mile from Hwy 1 at San Bernardo Creek Rd. The landing was textbook & I was able to catch Mary at home & talk her into giving me a lift back to launch. Patrick & Eric stayed a bit closer to launch & were hiking back to their cars at the top.

Since I hadn't done any exercise for the day, I had Mary drop me off at the beginning of the road to launch & hiked up to my truck. A great day & fun flying.


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