Sunday, March 2, 2014

50 Ways to Fly Better

It's the time of year where we, in the West, are thinking about the XC season.  I always try to get geared up by reading the latest info.  Bruce Goldsmith is one of the pilots I've looked up to since I was clunking along on my Sport2 10 years ago.  Bruce has put together some great information and made it readable in a format that works.

Bruce's qualifications are impressive - HG Champion, PG Champion, successful designer and test pilot - decades of experience.

In addition to Bruce's wisdom, this book includes articles and contributions from a whose-who of XC flying : Ian Blackmore, Josh Cohn, John Coutts, Bob Drury, Jonny Durand, Ed Ewing, Kelly Farina, Will Gadd, Ant Green, Steve Ham, Heike Hamann, Greg Hamerton, Alex Hofer, Marcus King, Patrick Laverty, Antoine Laurens, Horacio Llorens, Dustin Martin, Hugh Miller, Russell Ogden, Honza Rejmanek, Adrian Thomas, Jay Rebbeck, Raul Rodriguez, Jocky Sanderson, Pal Takats, Karel Vejchodsky, Godfrey Wenness and Rob Whittall.

This book fills in where other great XC texts have left me wanting for more information. 

Worth the price, easy to absorb the information, and a good read -

You can get your copy here - XCSHOP.COM


Sprint League Warm-Up thoughts

With less than 3 weeks until the Nor-Cal XC Sprint League warm-up weekend, I assume that many pilots have questions and even some second thoughts, about participating in the Sprint league -
  • Am I really ready for this?
  • Do I have the skills necessary to participate?
  • Do I have all the equipment necessary?
  • How the heck do I set this equipment up?
  • Will I embarrass myself?
  • What gear do I need to carry besides the basics?
  • What's the schedule going to be for the warm-up?
  • What's the schedule for a normal XC day?
  • How the heck do I make it around a task?
  • Will I even have fun?  Is it all worth it?
 The Sprint League is geared to expose enthusiastic, but inexperienced, pilots to the XC environment in a structured, safe, fun setting.  If you have the skill-set to get off the hill safely, fly in thermals, and make accurate approaches to landing, you are probably ready for the Sprint league events.  The truth is that by the end of the warm-up weekend, you will know whether it's a fit or not.  Go into the weekend relaxed and ready to have some fun. 
  • All the questions you see above will be answered during the weekend, but you can and *should* try to get a head start by doing a little preparation.  Read the following reference materials and you will have a good handle on many of the unknowns - 
  • Do the required registration and waivers before arriving at the site.
  • Show up rested, gear prepared, batteries charged, waypoints loaded, and ON TIME.
To prep for the weekend I recommend the following -

I wrote up a guide for the new XC pilot four years ago and have it available for download at

Have a look at Jug's website and for additional information and tips regarding task flying, GPS setup, and League organization. 

I'm looking forward to seeing everyone on the hill!