Skydog Sports

Florida Trip

 November 25, 2017

Hurray - Steve Arndt Just Arrived !!

 

The Skydog Report

And Now New From Skydogsports

The Moritz Wagner Report
Monday November 27, 2017 was a fairly light day. Bob got towed up first and I was right behind. Mark, the tug pilot, dropped me off at least 500 ft above Bob near the warehouses. We both worked some bubbles and Bob soon caught up to me.
This was one of the few times in my flying career when I just relaxed and felt like a bird, sensing what the glider was doing and turning into the lift. Then Bob saw the Atos's working something over the orange groves and headed towards them. I followed him to see how good the glide is on my old U2 compared to his T2C. We did not fly very fast and so our glide was very similar.
All along there were many birds that helped us identify the lift. That really made it feel like a fun game. After a few minutes over the orchard I found a nice thermal with about 200 ft/min up. Bob left towards Wallaby but I stayed telling myself not to leave the lift. That was the best thermal of the day topping out at 3200ft. Bob was not doing well and soon landed. While flying in that thermal George and Mike Barber came up slowly too but left it as well without having much luck finding something else.
Soon, Oded joined me and with his Atos outclimbed me by 200 ft or so. We had drifted quite a bit and the angle towards Wallaby started to look quite shallow, so I decided to try to find a liftline back. As everybody else, I did not find much going up on my way and landed soon.
Another beautiful day flying with real and human birds!

Wednesday November 29, 2017

The sky started to fill up with cumulus clouds before lunch indicating a good flying day. The only problem was that the wind out of the NE was pretty strong on the ground and 16 to 20 mph aloft. Bob, Oded, and I, waited for a little while but the cummies were calling and we soon gave in Ö

I got tossed around pretty good off the cart but then the tow was relatively civil. Mark, the tug pilot, left me in a light thermal, but working it and staying with it paid off, getting me to 3300 ft. I saw Bob working a nice cloud to the SW of me during my climb. By staying with my cloud I drifted quickly past Wallaby to the SW and soon realized that I needed to head back into the wind. I tried to get to the next cloud in the NE, but could not quite make it and landed after 35 minutes next to Bob and Oded. Bob had already put his glider back on a cart and was pushing it back into the launch corner, so I followed him.

The second launch was just as rough as the first one, but this time Mark left me in a vigorous thermal and I made it to cloud base at 4100 ft. I boated around under that cloud for a while  just enjoying the view and watching Oded getting towed up and released right below me. I was also eying the cloud upwind which looked pretty good but seemed far away. On the other hand this was the best time to leave, and so I did. The cloud was still nicely holding together when I got there and I started to climb again from about 2200 ft. As I looked up I was surprised to find someone else in my thermal: it was Steve Arndt in his beautiful sailplane. We thermalled for a while together as I was watching him flying circles around me, always with plenty of distance. But as quickly as he appeared, he was gone again. After that I tried to jump to one more cloud, but they were starting to fall apart. So when I arrived there I could not find much lift. From then on it was just a slow ride down back to Wallaby for a landing after 58 minutes.

Thursday November 30, 2017

Today Mark dropped me off between two clouds saying: you choose. They were both not very well defined, so I chose to go left. After a few minutes I found some bubbles and started to go up to about 3500 ft and just could not get any closer to cloud base. Looking around for birds and other gliders there was nobody indicating some good alternative, so I tried to figure out the clouds. I chose the darkest one, pulled the VG and headed for it, watching the vario and adjusting the route to minimize the sink. I got there a little below 3k and climbed at about 300 ft/min to cloud base at 4400 ft. On the way I saw that Jason and Niki were already thermalling under that cloud. They soon left for the next cloud upwind and after a short while I followed them. On the way I found mainly sink and lost a lot of altitude, but found some lift in the blue. So I started to work that and all of a sudden I saw Mark come towards me in the tug with Bob in tow. Bob released and we played around in the thermal trying to take each otherís picture with our fix mounted Go Pros. At about 3500 ft I saw some gliders over Wallaby circling, so I decided to head back in that direction. As I got there I saw George Adams circling at about my level. He and another glider started to head South where the clouds were. I stayed in the blue hoping to find something. However, my luck ran out and I was soon on the ground after about one hour and twenty minutes.

After lunch the sky still looked very good, so Bob and I decided to launch again. I was first and had a nice tow to about 900 ft when the engine on the tug quit. We both landed safely but that was the end of the flying day. Friday's forecast looks good again.

 

Photos Below The Stories

The Skydog Report

Saturday November 25, 2017 and we have a blue sky and about ten pilots ready to get airborne. I get off in third place and the lift is space and I have some fun trying to stay up. Cory Barnwell was first off and had a nice one hour flight. Sugarman flew his new Moyes supership and was thrilled with the performance. As the day wore on the lift got lighter and by three o'clock it was all over. My first flight was 22 minutes and my second flight was 28 minutes and I topped out at 2,800 feet. It was very challenging and I enjoyed the challenge.

Sunday November 26, 2017 and another blue sky day and we have a larger crowd today. Cory Barnwell and Niki Longshore are of early and show us the good spots. George Adams and Oded Kalir have good flights today and Oded spends over one hour in smooth lift with Rick Bremmer who had the longest flight of the day with over 2-1/2 hours. Oded got up to over 3,200 feet ato. I get off about fifth today and find decent lift but I see an inversion layer below 2.500 feet so I don't expect to much. My first flight lasts 48 minutes and my last attempt was only 19 minutes. Greg Linneman was often high and the thermal spotter for me today. Moritz Wagner also had a nice one hour flight today.

Monday November 27, 2017 we have yet another blue sky day and about six of us get airborne after 0ne pm. I was first of followed by Moritz and the Rick Bremer and then I think it was George Adams up next followed by Oded. I didn't see much of most pilots but Moritz stuck pretty close making for some good video shots included in our November 27 Video. Mark Johnson dropped me off in some light lift over the warehouses and I bobbled up and down between 1,500 feet ato and 2,600 feet. Moritz joined me and we worked together for about a half hour getting pretty close sometimes. Finally the lift appeared to better over the orange groves and Moritz went west a mile or so climbing out real nice to about 3,200 feet while I did not notice that he was gone and by the time I saw Moritz I did try to chase west but I got to low and then by the time I got back upwind to the landing field I was to low to catch a thermal back up so I landed after one hour and six minutes. The longest flight of the day again by Rick Bremer with one and one half hours. I think Oded got the highest anyone did and was up to  3,700 feet ato. so it was a pretty good day with lots of happy faces in the landing area. I took a second flight after 4 pm but it only lasted 19 minutes.

Tuesday November 28, 2017 we have a bit more wind that we like and around 4 pm Moritz and I decide to take a flight. We could see a bank of cummies getting closer but we were not able to get to them. Fay Barber towed both of us over the warehouses to the east and from there on it was all down hill in smooth air. Moritz squeaked out 21 minutes while I landed with 19 minutes.

Wednesday November 29, 2017 and finally we have some puffy clouds coming through the area but the wind is a little strong like 15 gusting to 20 mph. Around one o'clock Moritz, Oded and I decided to go for it. Mark pulls me up first and drags me to a nice cloud about three miles south of the Ranch and it is a boomer. I ride this baby like you would not believe and follow it south west over the orange groves where I stumble across six vultures circling and I join in the fun taking the lift up to 3,700 feet ato. After this bit of fun I decided to head east to over the warehouses to see if there is anything left over there. When I get almost to the warehouses I see another gaggle of vultures with white wingtips and I play with them for a few minutes. Now I go searching and as often happens I don't find anything and have to land with a 42 minute flight. OK and now for another try at it and this time Oded Joins Moritz and I. We did not get very close today so not much video but we had lots of fun trying to stay in the lift. Same old thing and I am on the ground in 34 minutes so let's try again as the sky looks so inviting and Mark pulls me up high but by now the lift had all but died and I got a 28 minute flight. You might say it was not a great day but I still enjoyed the challenge of staying aloft and safe landings.

Thursday November 30, 2017 A foggy morning but by 10 O'clock the tandems are flying and the sky clears. By noon the cummies start to form nicely and by one pm. we form a line of eager pilots ready for a skyout day. For a change I let the others get airborne first as I want to get photos of the others taking off. Sugarman gets off first and does not stick. The eight others got off and Sugarman went again and everybody found good lift. Jason Williams had a good flight for his first attempt after his eye surgery. Rick Bremer as always had the longest flight of three hours and forty-five minutes. Oded had a great flight also with three hours and fifteen minutes and most got up to five grand. I was a bottom feeder today and got up to 4,030 feet ato with a 48 minute flight. After I was in the air for twenty minutes my top zipper slid down and apart leaving me feeling uneasy so I was no my usual go for it guy. George Adams was cloud dancer today and Moritz Wagner did very well getting to 4,387 feet ato. Lots of smiley faces in the landing area after an exceptionally good day. Pics coming soon.

Friday December 1, 2017 Another great day at Wallaby Ranch. The day starts out with blue skies and lots of tandems early. No cummies at one pm so we get ready and give it a try by two o'clock. Greg Linneman was first off and I went second as we could see some cumulous formation in the distance. Greg was getting really high as I dropped off at 1,700 just after going through some great lift and I came back but stumbled around looking for it and finally I was down to around a grand when I found a line that was going up just southwest of Wallaby Ranch and I was able to stay with it up to four grand. Moritz and I circled together for a while and got a few good shots with the GoPros. George Adams, Moritz Wagner and Oded Kalir all had great flights up to 5,700 ato and over two hour flights while I topped out at 5,300 feet ato and l lasted 1 hour and 28 minutes. Tom Nejame and Steve Arndt dropped by in their sailplanes and thermalled with us. All the regulars had good flights today. "The Friday Night Special" was great with Mitch and Jimmy making some great music.

Saturday December 2, 2017 A simply fantastic day with lots of Tandems in the morning and by 2 pm a big group of pilots getting airborne. Today we had Fabiano from Brazil join us and Al Sasser also came to fly with us. I was first off and Fay signalled me off at 1,900 feet just after we went through some good lift. I came back for it but could not connect so I went searching over the subdivision north on 27 and I hit some good lift and at 23 minutes I was up to 5,300 feet ato. I watched as a couple of others tried to join me but they were not able to get into this good one. I took a run south to the cloverleaf staying close to 5 grand but the lift seemed weaker to the south so I came back north and got up again. There were a group of four that did a rectangle task north on 27 to 474 and west to 33 then south on 33 to Dean Still road and east to Wallaby Ranch. I followed Niki Longshore to the north for a few minutes but I tuned back when we were about three miles out. Niki said that it was a pretty easy task as there was abundant lift throughout the route. I put GoPro cameras on George Adams keel and on Moritz Wagner's base bar and I had no camera today. Moritz and I flew together for more than thirty minutes and Moritz got some great video. George videoed his XC flight north to near Claremont and back to Wallaby Ranch. Lots of pilots with great tales of their flights tonight. Moritz said that his flight today was best of his Hang Gliding career. I scored the most airtime with 3 hours and 2 minutes and up to 6,026 feet ato. Hopefully more tomorrow.

Sunday December 3, 2017 Almost a repeat of Saturday and today I Was off first and Fay Barber towed me to the same are near 27 and the north end of the warehouses. Fay put into a good thermal at 2,500 feet ato and I worked it up to four grand in eighteen minutes. We again had nice cummies to help with thermal location. I continued thermalling while the others were towed up. After about a half hour others started to join me and this time I had a GoPro on my keel so hopefully I will have some great shots. Moritz took the airline home this morning and Oded is birding today so it is just George and I holding down the fort here at Wallaby, George gets off third right after Greg. George tries a out and return to quest but when he arrives at 474 and a bit to the west there is nothing but blue sky so George heads back to Wallaby and lands with a two and a half hour flight. Mike Barber and a few others try a run to Quest and back but they also find that the lift has diminished north of 474 and they turn back and most of them are now flying with me at Wallaby. Rick Bremer has a great day and we meet up occasionally at cloud base. Rick has a three hour and twelve minute flight landing ten minutes after me at 5:15 pm. Steve Arndt dropped by at four grand and hopefully I have some good footage of the two of us thermalling. I had the longest airtime today with a 3 hour and 42 minute flight and up to 5,400 feet as most did. This was another fantastic day at Wallaby Ranch.

Monday Cloudy day no flying and I am packing up to fly home on Tuesday. Oded and George are staying for a few more days.

Tuesday December 5, 2017 Oded called to say that he had tried an xc to Quest and got to cloudbase but landed five miles out and came back and took a second tow and logged one hour and twenty minutes in the later flight. Tug pilot Mark Johnson had a three hour flight on his Wills Wing U-2 so it sounds like a great day.

Wednesday December 6, 2017 a few pilots tried their luck but the lift was to light and most had sledders. Oded and George packed up and will be driving home to NY Thursday morning. Stay tuned and we will give reports on our next adventures.

 

 

Photos Below

We Are On Our Way

 

Moritz Checking The Tie Downs

 

Fay Barber Ready To Tow Us Up

 

Oliver, Walt and Jimmy Taking a Tandem Up

 

Malcolm Launches Skydog

 

Cory Barnwell Above and Behind

 

Tandem

Tandem

 

Waiting To Launch

 

Tandem

 

Tandem

 

Jennifer Louie - Tandem Student

Walt's Daughter

 

Two Tandems

 

Oded and Moritz

 

Tandem

 

Cory Above

 

Tandem Landing - Jennifer

 

Jenn

Oliver and Jennifer

 

Tandem

 

Cory

Walt's Daughter and Mookey

 

Tandem

 

Tandem

Love Your Puppy

 

Solo

 

Solo

 

Jenn

Tandem

 

Jen and Oliver Landing

 

Monday Morning Blues - Should We Fly ?

 

Ready to Launch

 

Moritz Close Below

 

Moritz Way Above Me

 

Moritz Staying Close

 

Cory Chasing Skydog

 

Landing Approach

 

SugarMan

George

 

Thursday November 30, 2017 Photos

Mark Johnson - Tug Pilot

 

Fay Barber - Tug Pilot

 

Moritz Wagner Thermalling With Skydog Bob

 

Jason Williams

 

Malcolm Jones And Danielle Williams

 

Moritz

 

George Adams Towed by Jimmy Nordle

Sugarman on Approach

 

Sugarman - Lift Off

 

Niki Longshore

 

Malcolm and Danielle

 

Student

Solo Pilot

 

Oded Being Towed Up

 

Sugarman

 

Sugarman

 

Mark Johnson

Malcolm and Danielle

 

Niki

 

George Adams

 

George

 

Danielle

Jimmy

 

Mark

 

George

 

Moritz

 

Niki

Rick Bremer

 

Dan

 

Malcolm and Danielle

 

Sugarman Screaming In

 

Oded Kalir

Sugarman

 

Oded - Lift Off

 

Oded

 

George

 

George Adams Landing

 

Dan

Friday December 1, 2017 Photos

Tandem Pilots

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oliver and Jeff

 

 

 

 

Walt and Lindsay

 

Jeff and Barry - Son and Dad

Jim Brings Lindsay Back to Take Off

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walt and Lindsay

 

Set Up

Lindsay, Jeff, Barry and Mom

 

 

Dana Kalir - Birding Specialist

 

 

 

Walt and Tom

Editor Bob

 

Quick fix

 

Friday December 2, 2017 Photos

Laurie Croft

 

Tandem

 

 

 

 

 

 

Skydog T-2C

 

 

Moritz Films Skydog Bob

 

 

 

 

Oliver and Jenn

 

 

Niki

 

Moritz Films Oded

 

 

 

 

Moritz Films Skydog Bob

 

 

 

 

Moritz Films Skydog Bob

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steve Arndt and a Hang Glider

 

Moritz Films Skydog Bob

 

Niki

 

 

Malcolm Jones Takes Another Tandem Student Up

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moritz Films Skydog Bob

 

 

 

 

Al Sasser Getting Ready To Soar

 

Moritz Films Skydog Bob

 

Steve Arndt Thermalling Up In His New Sailplane