11½ flights from 6 launches to 7 LZs
Skyport to top land at the Liminator twice
To Top Land at The Brotherhood
To Top Land at West La Cumbre
To Top Land at The Alternator
To Top Land The VOR
To the Wind Mill at Painted Cave
To 192 east of Casitas Pass Road (Carpinteria)
Over to Bates for another 4½ flights
about 3½ hours airtime
Opted to shift Saturday's flying to Friday. Hoping for less OD, but wishful thinking. Rob boosted a good size crew uphill in his big red truck. On launch a little after 10. Marbled sun at launch. Bases higher in the back, and sun on the back ridge. Light but soarable. Airborne ASAP about 10:25.
Up and over to the R&R. Stayed out of the clouds all day, but they were fun to play with. The clouds pushed in from the south and I got to 38 at the R&R. It was clear on the north side of the white stuff. Finally came back around and ducked under. Tried an approach to the Liminator Launch but missed low so opted to buzz the PG launch instead. Back up out front and around for a top landing on the road going down hill toward the Eliminator Launch.
Watched for awhile and got airborne again. Over to the R&R again, but the clouds were pushed in deeper. Could only get to 35 and still maintain good visual. There was a cloud over launch, and was able to fly over the top of it, and back around for an approach. Nailed the target this time, approaching the Liminator Launch from the SW. Arrived about 5 feet low and flared up onto the launch, touching down next to Tony De Groot.
Watched Rob's students for awhile, and chatted for 15 minutes. Airborne again, but it was dark at launch, so had to go to the Antenna Farm to get up. Tried to thermal up and say hi to Sharon, but she disappeared on me as I approached. Cloudbase had lifted a bit, and there was sun at the Skyport again. Worked up to the Factory and made a run at launch from about 31. Came in a few hundred below, but it was in full sun, so I was able to wiggle up. Climbed up the north side of the clouds. Nowhere to go but north, so I went back for a top landing at the Brother Hood. Out of altitude when I got there (the Brother Hood is about 36½), and had to put down on the road in the gap. Hiked up to the SS launch.
Off again. Around the corner behind the Skyport to the R&R. Up to cloudbase, about 37, and reached back for Cagey Bowl. Got there a little low, but it was in sun. Got back up even with Cagey Bowl Launch, but the climb was weak, so I dolphined on for La Cumbre Peak. Came in well below, and had to go out to the tit in the saddle to get up enough to jump back to the face. Wanted to land at West La Cumbre. It had been in the clouds, but was now just under base. Took about 10 more minutes to get up even with the peak. Reached back for West La Cumbre with just enough to touch down cross wind going west.
West La Cumbre was light, only zero to 2 or 3. Opted for the front pull up, but it took a couple of tries. Followed the back ridge over toward The Alternator. The first set of towers before the Alternator was in sun, and the boundary layer convection got me back to 4ish. Plenty of altitude for approach to a spot of preference. Set down on the higher ridge just west of the Alternator towers.
The Alternator of course, was an easy launch. Got to base over the Saddle and took 38 SW to No Name. Back to the mid 3s and over to the VOR. A little darker, but smooth. Launch had been in the clouds, but base was now a hundred over. Touched down next to the launch flag, just behind launch. Kited the glider up hill a few yards and reloaded it on the front side. Didn't bring the canopy down because I might need the time latter in the day.
Only got into the mid 3s, but there was sun on the ridge going toward Painted Cave. Starting to get some flow from the SW. Needed a boost to get there. Came in over the houses behind the saddle. Wanted to round the wind mill, but didn't have enough to reach it. Lucked into a core that drifted along the SW face toward the wind mill and I rounded it with ease. Back to the same thermal and departed east bound with 34. Another boost along the way and back to the VOR easy.
Fast return with a little tailwind, getting to cloudbase around 37ish. Reports of west wind on the coast, but not as much up higher. Started getting some wind at The Factory. Bases were lowering off to the east, and were only in the low 3s at Ramero Saddle. The launch at Castle Ridge was a couple hundred over cloudbase, so I opted for the front points which were collecting full sun. A little more wind down lower. 27 off Castle Point. Nothing over Point 3. Wanted to leave from Point 4, so I reached across and came in low, about half way up. The increasing west wind was becoming problematic, but it enabled me to ridge soar up the west side.
Found a strong core on top, but it was drifting back into the lee. Stuck for 15 minutes, up and down between even with the top, and a few hundred over (24ish). Couldn't really reach anywhere, so I opted to stick it out and hope something better would eventually come through. Finally connected with a core that had better trajectory and avoided disintegration in the lee. Got to the edge of cloudbase at 29. Wanted a couple hundred more, but I had drifted down wind of the trigger. With enough altitude to get out, I took what I had and went for Snow Ball. Had wanted to over fly the mesa, but I was downwind of it.
Got to Snowball a little over 2 with plenty to reach town, but wanted more. Left eastbound 10 minutes later with 17 hoping to work into Cate School, but not enough action, so I threw in the towel for a landing next to 192 a quarter mile east of Casitas Pass Road.
Stuffed it in Sharon's back seat, and we went to Bates. Looked a little light, so we opted to skip it and break down on the grass at the new park, but once at the park, it seemed the wind was trying to move through from the west. Back to Bates. Off and up to 300 MSL (launch is about 200). The ocean was filled in steady and even. A little more wind toward La Conchita, but we never got any caps at Bates. Went for a number of flights before finally heading back to the new park to clean the gear and pack up on the grass.