Pine SS x 2
1st to Yellow Jacket Trail
2nd to Buenaventura Golf Course (28 mi) new pg south bound mark from Pine
[Monday's Weather] [Sunday's Weather]
Since it was potentially one of the best XC days of the year, I was hoping to get off early, like 10ish. Met up with Diablo, Rotor, TQ, and Carolyn at Rite Aid in Ventura for a ride to launch in The Beast. Arrived at 9:25. It was cycling light from the north at all the check spots. Swallows showed about 9:50 followed by the first up cycle. I suspected the south would push in but the thermal activity was breaking off out front and drawing from OTB. The down cycles seemed to get worse as the thermal strength built. Clouds were developing, but the launch conditions were poor. I opted to give it a go and got off with a front pull a little after 11ish.
Poor glide out with some lee side turb. Got on Pro Star Spine, out of the sink. The drift was still from the north and I went with the draw toward the east end of Half Moon Meadow. Found the edge of the north and turned east looking for the eastern edge of the west. Found a thermal and climbed from 55 to 14.5. Angled up onto the east side of Haddock
My original flight plan was to head down the range and not go to Lockwood. There was good cloud development further down the range, but it was questionable if I could reach it on glide. There was a nice cloud just north of The Chute. I felt that I had some a little wind from the east, and figured I could get out of the east by heading north first, so I played for the cloud north of The Chute. On the glide over, the cloud evaporated, and a good street formed on the range. I didn't find usable lift under the cloud remnants. If I played for Thorne Point and came up short on the back side, I'd be looking at long hike. I could have gone for Grade Valley, but though I could make it to Guillermo. I also thought I'd get something on the way (but I almost never do).
I made the play for Guillermo, but started encountering lee side sink trying to penetrate upwind toward it. Fell off short and turned toward Yellow Jacket Trail. Found a strong small core just off the north end of Grade Valley, but lost after a few hundred foot gain, and was back down on the deck. Landed between the trees.
Got to the dirt road and caught a ride to Lockwood Valley. Packed up and waited over an hour for the next ride back toward Pine. Rob came by on chase but I wanted to go the other way. A couple of sisters stopped and got me to the north launch. The younger one (late teens) was more game, but her older sister (early 20s) was keeping her guard up. I would have preferred to get to the south launch, but the older sister wouldn't go further than the north launch. It was coming in weak and I couldn't get off. I asked a spectator for a ride the south launch and he kindly took me up there. Easy take off about 3:35. Got to 85, but it was kind of dark and had to fall off to the sun over at Haddock to get to good altitude. The OD at Pine was giving way to some sun so I stepped back up wind and got to 14+ over launch.
The clouds had pushed all the way out to the river. There was some west wind so I thought if I could get to CB out front and staged off to the west, I'd have a shot at a good glide toward Ventura. Double D and already tried for Carpinteria but reported too much SW wind. Stepped out to TJ's, but the cloud shelf retreated back to the ridge line. I had about 12.5 and considered back tracking for more, but my position was good. Late in the day it was likely the clouds wouldn't push out again, so I took what I had southbound.
Found a smooth week convergence over Dry Lake Ridge and climbed back form the high 10s to 12.5. 9K crossing Oak View. Started picking up lower level wind from the west as I came into Ventura. Had about 3,500 near De Anza, but the west had pushed me up on the big tower behind town. Couldn't quite make the beach against the SW, so I fell off and cruised south taking the drift toward the east.
Good landing on the 10th tee at Buenaventrua Golf Course. Clean pack up. Called Brendan and he was kind enough to boost me back to my car.
Diablo flew 176, landing after sunset up the 15 NE of Barstow. He didn't launch until 2:30. Many other pilots had noteworthy flights