Archive for January, 2012

The BIG announcement!

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

I know you all have been waiting to hear the BIG news! The time has arrived!

I am very pleased to announce!

The TEXAS 1200 Race and Rally

From the Gulf to the Prairie! 12 pilots,1200 kms,12 days or less.

South Padre Island to Texhoma! June 19th thru June 30th 2012

the invitations are being delivered this week.

If completed this will be the longest race ever completed in paragliding history.

Other important dates just released: 6th Spring Fling,La Belle FL Apr 22 thru 29th

5th ECPC(East Coast Paragliding Championships)Apr 29 thru May 5th,

LoneStar Championships in Hearne, TX. Aug 5th to 11th.

More Details to follow!

David.

Too many clouds!

Sunday, January 15th, 2012

I always prefer nice puffy cu´s over high pressure and when the high cirrus came around four days ago i thought this is great we will get a return of the good clouds we had during the several weeks prior, but each day it was so shaded by the high cirrus that it just not producing many cu´s and today started out the same despite the forecast of less cirrus.

We arrived to launch at 11:30 and only a few pilots were in the air and no one getting very high, then slowly pilots got high and made the transistion to Penon and some got high but most struggled and many went down. The front went thru many cycles of thick shade to clearing then back to shade. We finally launched into a sun cycle at 2:00. We got 600 over easily but struggled to break thru the 1,200 inversion and things felt wierd the air was rocky, popy,droppy. The winds aloft were coming from the back and several times i hit strong lift edges that tossed me and the glider around, finally in a strong thermal that i got way out front we got to 2,700 over launch and as i went on glide i was facing a 10mph head wind from the back where there were low dark clouds by the volcano and hints of virga over Toluca.

We hit strong sink then punchie lift that was like a wide band of strong lift and we were back up to 2,700 over launch and then we glided to the brown fields and there in the usual lee area, we hit strong raspy lift and after gaining several hundred ft i decide to push toward a formign cu but it was a bad idea as the thermal cranked up and those in it went up near a raspy looking cloud base, while i sank on my way over to the cloud which whisped out and thennice light thermal that did toss me around so much and i climbed up high enough to glide for San Agustin and along the way i got drilled in heavy sink with moments where the glider just did not feel right and i knew the air was funky so i just wanted a safe landing and when i got over Jovans the air was going up again so oated upwind and waited fr the area to cool down a bit and son i found the sink cycle which brought me smoothly to the ground, with strong east flow whihc is highly unusal for here.

One reserve toss in front of luanch, pilot was reported to be okay.

The high cirrus seems to be clearing and maybe we will get the promised great cu´s that follow these kind of days, there was a huge cunimb just south of town about 30 min ago with a pillius cap on top. To the east of our house we see a dark wall of clouds which seems to be hiding some virga behind it.

More soon,

David.

Clouds return!

Saturday, January 14th, 2012

A large storm the hammered Houston has dropped south and given us thick high cirrus for the last two days.

Yesterday Traffic was bad as everyone else had waited on launch for better conditions but soon the traffic cleared as many sank out in the light thermals.

I flew Amy tandem and we skied out in short order after making a low save half way to the l.z. then it was over the back to San Francisco as some pilots dove into Sacmacate and got drilled, we flew along the south route and got a dribbler in the valley but slowly we got up and out of there having enough glide to make it to the trash dump where like always it went off and we skied out to near 12,000 ft and then we made a long final glide to town for a soft landing lake side.

Today starts the little fun comp which seems highly under attended 25 pilots at last count. It is a two day comp by hosted by the nes guysin town, they are trying to get a foot in the door with competition.

I think we will have a return of the good clouds over the next few days.

Stay high my friends!

David.

January, high pressure!

Thursday, January 12th, 2012

After weeks of epic flying conditions, some of the best we had seen in many years the usual January high pressure has returned now on day four. It started out a slow decline from epic to higher pressure and blue skies. Then we had a day with thick high cirrus and everyone struggled to stay aloft till around 2:00 when it cleared and then everything boomed all at once. i thought that we would see a return of the good clouds but it just simple did not happen. Today we struggled to get high over launch and then had to fight for scraps over pinitas, but eventually we had a glide tot he trash dump where we found a small core that slowly tunred on and got us enough to glide for San Ramon and i hooked it over the last bump before the hill west of Saucos, Andrew was below me and just did not hook it and landed a tSan Ramon so i headed back for jovans and hit the convergence north of the road to Saucos soon i was climbing at 1,000 fpm and then i decided to chewck to see how good it was and i flew straight in 800 fpm lift most of the way to Jovans. I had a hard time to get down to land and the wondsock was flippiong back and forth, the glider beofre me landed in a south wind and i landed two minutes later in a north.

Some clouds started to form at 2:00 and it gave me some hope that tomorrow will have lower preessure and maybe a few clouds, the forecast is for 20% chance of showers in Touca tomorrow and that should mean clouds for us here in Valle.

There are about 100 pilots flying everyday now.

David.

Incredible!

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

Today was simply incredible, i took my long time mechanic friend Umberto for his first tandem form El Penon, he had been once before but from the La Torre launch. We waited for the majority of launch traffic to clear and then found a nice launch cycle which led us out front to a boomer that topped out 2,000 ft over launch. we glided for Sacamacate but got drilled along the glide to the first pinitas and we were just too low to catch a thermal we saw another pilot get just in front of us. So we pushed on for the peak of Sacamacate and again had big sink but in the valley we saw a glider climbing and joined him but his core was weak so i pushed forward a bit and got a better thermal which got us high enough to make a glide toward the trash dump where we hit a another boomer and topped out at base 12 something, then had a nice glide in high over town for the full tour and some wing-overs on the way down.

Anyday you fly tandem to the lake with three thermals is an amazing day and that´s the third time i have done it this year.

Happy 2012!

Thursday, January 5th, 2012

We have been so busy here in Valle lately that there has been no time for blogging.

We had a full house and most days we were rocking a full van with the record now at 15 plus gear.

The conditions continue to be some of the best i have ever seen here in Valle, he had three days where it rained almost every afternoon and two of the days we had harder rain then i have seen at this time of year. One day there was heavy rain and then it turned to hail and we heard that the road to Toluca had 3 inches covering the road.

the norwaygo madness arrived earlier then ever this year, and i must say they seem to have their act together better then in previous years, although in the last week there were two mid-air collisions and both of them involved a norwaygo pilot. The second incident i cannot say who was at fault, but the first one which involved my client and which is now almost viral on facebook, was clearly the fault of the norwaygo. My client was thermalling for a few minutes climbing in the proper direction and the Norwaygo flew straight at him and never adjusted his flight path to not intersect my clients thermalling turn, my client was lower and tried to avoid the collision but was just too late catching his outside left wingtip on the pod of the norwaygo which caused my client to go into a negitive spin, eventually he full stalled the glider to re-set and was able to fly away both piltos un-injured. the Norwaygolater apoligized and bought my client a beer and admitted he wasnot paying attention to the gliders turning in front and below him. But otherwise this year has been remarkably incident free compared to normal.

There are about 100 pilots flying everyday now, and more arriving daily.

big preps are underway for the upcoming PWC super final most people think it is the world champinships all over agiain so we have to explain to them the difference between the real FAI world championships, and the PWC(Private world Cup)

I have some big news! which will soon be made public, stay tuned to the skyblog because you´ll see it here first.

David Prentice.