Nut House to Brush Peak (West End of Goleta)
and back to Carpinteria High School
34 + 22 ~ 56 miles
a little under 5 hours
Pam was dilated 2 cm and 50% effaced, so she wasn't encouraging me to get out, but if not today, then my season might be over. After physical therapy; carpooled with Brendan from Ventura for a 10:30 meet at Nordhoff. On launch about 11:30. The climbing temp was ok, the bugs were limited, and the footing good, but the humidity was high, so we were sweating. Airborne a little before noon.
It had been blowing in steady on launch, but started to back off and cycle. I pulled up at the end of an extended lull. You could see the heat shimmering in the air. The thermal was a bit out front. Faded left for position and turned right to center the core. Continued turning right on the same core up to 45ish. Not much drift. A little from the east up higher. Probably the best thermal I've had off launch at the Nut House.
No need to press upwind for Spine One. Took my altitude and headed west across the river. Worked up the low ridge, came in on Bump 2 low, but it worked and I was back up to 45ish. Missed the thermal again at Bump 3. Worked up to the Back Step and got to 56. Went through the saddle behind White Ledge and tried to hold the back ridge. Cloudbase was low from East Divide onward. I couldn't hold the back ridge and came limping out to get on East Divide down lower.
Tried out in front of West Divide due to the low base a bit below 4. Noon worked ok, and I got another thermal right at the power lines. Cloudbase was still only 4ish, but the range was lower so it was easy going. The drift varied. Some west down lower, but also some lines with a tailwind. Better altitudes through SB and more wind from the SE past the R&R. Left the VOR downwind with 45 and came in low across 154. Got back up from 2K. Worked upwind between 2K and 35 against a light SW to the south west spine below Brush Peak (west end of Goleta / just past the gun club). Would have continued if it had been SE, but the west was becoming more dominant.
Good glides with more west wind drifting back, but lower altitude. Down to 2K at Painted Cave just above the highway, but got back to 25. 2K again at the VOR, but connected back up. Getting into the mid to high 4s across main points, but better tailwind down lower. Didn't connect at the Ramero Road Cut, and got stuck on Castle Point.
I wanted to make it to El Carro Park, but needed to get a thermal or two past Castle to reach home on glide. Tried to transition up to the back ridge with 27+, but couldn't make it work. Running out of time. Best option for max distance was to continue along the front points, but Castle was weak, and the points further along don't usually work as well. If I played for the next point and didn't connect, it may take awhile to get out of the foothills. My phone had rung several times and I had voice mail. I was concerned that Pam may have gone into labor, and I didn't want to get stuck back in the foothills away from transportation. I opted for civilization. Topped about 28 and pulled a good buoyant glide over Polo Ridge.
Couldn't quite clear the power lines that border the west end of Carpinteria High School. Set down on a driveway next to the school. Checked the mail, and begged Sharon for a ride. She got me back to my car in Ventura.