The weather was dreary when we arrived at launch around noon. Cloudbase was at least 400' below launch and the visibility was a half mile. We waited it out ans finally called a 38K task - A 2k Exit start around 49917 then out to wolver (near Squaw Valley) then down valley to Woodlake. Cloudbase was just barely higher than launch so things were a bit interesting before the start, but lift was abundant and I had no issues with the call to fly the task.
My start was a good one and I was with a contingent heading directly along courseline across the Dunlap valley. The other group was working from 49917 to Bald and then out to Wolver. My group included Dean Stratton and Babush so I felt the gamble was a sound one. We had the potential to be 5-10 minutes ahead of the Bald group *IF* we could contact lift along our route. It looked good with dark spots under the clouds, but nothing substantial was found by the collective. Meanwhile the Bald group was able to get up to 5000-6000' over Bald and continue on course while my group slowly dwindled as we landed one-by-one. I found a bubble of warm, buggie air with thermal birds buzzing around and was able to hang in there for 15 minutes before falling out and landing in a nice field with 5 other pilots. Dean made it over to the other side of the ridge but also landed - our gamble had failed.
Meanwhile the other group had made the Wolver turnpoint and were headed South in dwindling conditions. Looking at the SPOT page, it looks like Pete Shaefer has made well along the course and Josh Cohn has also made it down the valley also -
It's been a great comp with 6 straight days of flying and one canceled task. The conditions have been very good.
More to come after the awards party tonight.