May aerotow

Guest post from John of the Dartmoor Scale Soaring Association

There was a good attendance, circa 20 pilots at a guess, for the above aero tow and  fly in at Exbourne and the weather really played ball with sun, high fluffy clouds and only the occasional thermal breeze, visibility excellent. What was also good is that you get to drive over a field, always fun that!

After the briefing by Rob and Felix flying got underway with Felix and Graham towing and others using electric models. The site benefits from a good mown circle. When Chris, Mike and myself arrived and we were the first, sheep and lambs were grazing all over the field, a lovely rural scene, but once flying began they all but one lost lamb cleared off to the adjoining field so no problems. Incidentally the lamb did eventually hear mum calling and scooted off at high speed. Every pilot enjoyed good flying although the lift was patchy to say the least, I caught only one fairish thermal in 4 or 5 launches and managed a 200 to 600ft climb and then was encroaching a no fly zone so came home and down.
Chris Bowles achieved the ‘climb of the day’ with his 1/3 scale ASW15. After a maiden tow he was calling his landing, but after a couple of go arounds due to buoyant air and at only 24ft a thermal was located and with some delicate initial turns raised this brute of a sailplane to 1610ft….doesn’t it make you sick!
Some one I’m guessing from the Okehampton chaps, had his scalish Canberra towed up as a glider, not sure if the two engine nacelles actually contained ducted fans, but it looked good for the short time it was airborne, landing was fast! Also looking good was Mike Ford’s Musgar in a stunning blue and white scheme, I think that may have been a maiden tow…don’t quote me.
Thanks has to go to an energetic young Ethan who volunteered to go and look for a fly away, unfortunately as yet unlocated. All in all a FAB-U-LOUS day, so good when it all comes together.
Attached pics come courtesy of Robert Wooley, many thanks.
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