Saturday, October 8, 2011

Glad to be home!

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Date: 7/10/11

Task: Kingaroy – Dalby – Warra Silo – Kingaroy = 229km
Stats: 59.9kph; 1.9kt avg climbs & 46% thermalling; 39:1 for 6.8km at 60kts;

As the subject line suggests, I was glad to be home after very close to 6hrs in the sky! I was first to launch (on purpose, trying to max out every day at the moment) into a 6/8 CU sky at 11am, with weak climbs to 2000agl. I immediately set off on my original task, to Wondai. I got 7km out before missing a climb and faced a likely outlanding. So I headed back for a re-start, good practice all the same.

Next time around, made a good start and tip toed to Wondai (34km North). Before 1pm reminded me of some EU weather, with lots to slow glides and climbs. Deviations of 60* were happening, just to stay airborne. At one point, I held for approx 5min at the top of a climb waiting for conditions to improve. Next glide out, I got to the end of the soarable conditions before turning for home again – an outlanding looked likely.

It was down, down, down. Thankfully I saw a set of birds take to the sky, and was rewarded with a slow climb to a safe working altitude. More deviations of 90*, and climbs that lacked feel on the way home – I finally made it, where all the other members had finally taken to the sky. They had set a task (above), so I climbed up with Jim Crowhurst (ASW19) & Mark Dalton (Libelle), plus a cast of thousand in 18m super ships!

Good start, though maybe 300’ low, the clubbies headed off on task. Weak climbs still, only 2kts around and no real lines of energy. Just prior to the bunya mountains, we all went our separate ways – Jim South, Mark centre and I – North. I got the jump on the pack here with a couple of nice climbs before crossing. Sadly though, this is where Mark Daltons and my fun stopped. Jim said he could see better climbs on the outher side of the range to the South, hence why he chose that route.

From there, it was down, down, down again! Second low save of the day, and nothing is really working, nor going to the top. Tip toeing along, I finally get a good climb to base just NE of the first turn. Have I got my running shoes back on? Nope, backed off the cruise speed to extend the glide. Still couldn’t connect, while I heard the 18m boys having a great time – including Jim who is appearing to be keeping up with them!

I round Warra Silo and head for home, thankfully with a 15kt tailwind. The down side, blue holes followed by spread out over the range. Progress was slow, taking 1kt climbs. Some eagles came to my rescue at the range, where I was able to take a 0.8kt climb to 5000’ for a very marginal glide. One thing I’m happy about, is that the LX5000 seems to be accurate for this – as the numbers stayed steady the whole way in with the smooth conditions. One more climb, and I’m easily home. I get it, and while climbing I decide to take it high and max out the OLC distance for the day.

Glad to be home!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Blowing a gale!

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Date: 02/10/2011

Weather from :  A trough is bringing extensive rain to central/northern NSW with lower falls in southern Queensland. This will clear the coast on Thursday night, bringing a southerly flow to SE Qld for Friday and the weekend.

Whilst the trough is bringing widespread rain to south eastern Queensland, falls are only expected to be 10mm or less across the Downs, but with higher falls to the south. This amount of rain is unlikely to suppress convection or cause out landing issues except in low lying areas.
Scattered Cloud @ 7000’.  Wind: 230/21(!)

Task: Kingaroy – Rosevale Strip – Kingaroy – Wondai A/F – CPN – Kumbia – Kingaroy
Stats: 232km @ 87.07kph; 24% Thermalling @ 4.1kts; 43:1 for 13km glides at an average of 67kts IAS; Deviations of 7%

The day started out with lightish winds, before growing to the predicted strength of 20kts.  The clouds starting early as RASP predicted.  Sadly though, as the Warwick State Comps were finishing and all the wind about – it was a lazy start to the day with myself being the only single seater airborne!
Straight off tow saw a solid climb to base, so I promptly headed off on track.  Instantly I noticed progress was slow, though snaking up wind made it easier to connect the lines of energy.  Today I worked a top 1/3 working band, this worked a treat – the climbs were regular and reliable.

After checking out Bruce Taylors traces from the recent state champs, I noticed he moved around the sky a lot – so I made a conscious effort to do the same.  I think it really worked for me as reflected in the glide stats.

Working cross-wind to the North was good practice for the tactical flying.  All in all, I was happy how I ran these two legs.  I shared one climb with my good friend in a K21, before taking a 40* deviation for 5km to line up a good energy line.  Pleased I did this after reviewing the trace, gave me a 50km final glide!

The glider is performing nicely with the new ASI, seem to be thermalling at 45kts now – and occasionally going up near the 50kt mark.  So potentially an under-reading instrument before.  Also, my old man and I worked on the sealing of the canopy again – with good results.  Though I think I’ll put a little more felt down, and seal up the rear O2 bottle hole to make the cockpit extremely quiet, not just quiet :)

Safe Circles,

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

First XC in W3

Facebook: Adam Woolley's Gliding Adventures

Date: 17/09/11
Stats: Planned 400km flight.  Outlanded @ 267km. 78.9kph; 3.4kt average climbs (40% thermalling); 30:1 for 9.3km glides at an average of 68kts.


1st Cross-Country in my Cirrus, W3. Started straight away into building conditions. Had a good run to Miles on the first leg, staying high and taking reasonable climbs.

Turned Miles for Kingaroy with out any issues. Decided mid-leg that I would get home too early, so decided to extend the task to shoot for 400k+. Once I turned, had one more reasonable climb before slowly heading on the downward slope. Climbing conditions were forever changing, and lacked feel.

After analysing the flight further, I recalled the last climb at 2.4kts.  There was actually nothing wrong with the climb, just lacked feel.  I left the climb at 3000AGL thinking I could find something a little better up ahead.  This was the final straw, the air went smooth and hardly got another bump after this one.  Looking back now, I should’ve seen the writing on the wall and been more patient.  Though having said that, I need to ensure that my bottom to top averager is correct so I can make better decisions in the future.

I spoke to Allan Barnes after the flight, he said that the conditions were transiting from closely spaced climbs, to much larger. I sadly missed the next climb before the 9,000'+ blue conditions started late in the day.

Oh well, such is life. Still learning so much about the glider. Thermalling at 40kts, still to slow I think. Will jack it up at the state comps to 45kts.

Some positive attributes to the flight, I was very happy with how I left climbs - never once did I hold onto a climb hoping it'd get better, and as such my altitude trace all had sharp points!  Inter thermal cruising was good too for the conditions, though I'm going to start experimenting with MC, rather than block speeds.

On a side note, took all the sealing out of the canopy as an experiment - had air going here, there and everywhere. Though much better than the ear-piercing buzz that the mylars created.

Next flight will be at the QLD State Soaring Championships!


Monday, September 12, 2011

WPP is back in the game!

Where have all the years gone?  After my posts stopped in 2007, I basically gave up gliding for the career.  Which has turned out to be the best thing I ever did for myself, now secure, with my own glider again and at my favourite gliding club -

I now own a Schempp-Hirth, Standard Cirrus 75B, GQT.  Which is sentimental to me, as it was my fathers first ever glider too!  It's had numerous other owners over the years, most recently the Warwick Gliding Club.  They've looked after this machine and generously allowed me to buy it off them with a deal.  The glider now sports a new panel, and fresh new look. Totally sealed and race ready.  All that is left is to fit winglets, mountain high EDS O2 system and possibly some bug wipers!

 This year I plan to fly a G Dale coaching course, QLD & NSW State Soaring Championships, the Club and Multi-Class Nationals and CD JoeyGlide (!  Hopefully bring you all the action live from here, my twitter account: getsoaring and my facebook page: Adam Woolley's Gliding Adventures.

For now, here's a post I've previously sent out - just to get the ball rolling!

After a few false starts on previous weekends, today the conditions and club operations finally permitted our first flights! Today had a top of 5-19*c with a westerly breeze of approx 10kts.

Dad looked at his logbook for when he last flew GQT, it was on the 10th April, 1982.  That's over 29 years ago!!  Dad had a great first flight back in his first ever glider, even saw a few wing-overs!

Next up, WPP's turn.  Conditions had eased a lot since my check flight, with barely 2kts around.  That didn't matter, what I noticed straight away after tow was the quiet cockpit (all the sealing work), the vario's working nicely and the LX talking to the winpilot PRO!  Sadly, never really left circling flight and didn't go over 55kts (~110kph).  But, very happy with the crisp handling of the cirrus and my purchase.

Bring on a great season and many more moons of racing!!

Sunday, August 12, 2007


Date: 12/08/07
Stats: 101FAI Triangle, 71.56km/hr; 2.2kt avg climb (39% Climbing); 32.3:1 L/D for 8.1km glides = not very impressive...

However, had a nice day out. Was a fairly straight forward sort of flight, however was challenging enough to keep me on the move.

Jo, Richard and I all crossed the start line together at approx the same height. I had a really good run up the first 33km. Again it was a blue day, however only light and variable winds for a strange change up to 3,500AGL. Nothing spectacular to talk about here, however, after 2 climbs I arrived at Dalby after doing 96km/hr!

Unfortunately, it turned pear shaped from there. I turned Dalby @ 2000AGL and went looking for my next big climb. At this point, I should say that there was thick higher level cloud in patches. So although a semi warm day, you still had to be careful to stay out of the shaded areas..

Anyways, I pushed on from Dalby and couldn't have had a worse run: 26:1 for 11km. It was from that point on that I lost out on big speed points. I grovelled from there on really, took me 15min to get out 640' up to 2000AGL again before I felt like I could press on.

Unfortunately, I never did connect with the big climbs that others were reporting again. This was a problem for me, as even though it was a fun club weekend, I still wanted to push on and go faster. Driving myself lower again, 2 x under 1000' saves I finally climb back to 3000AGL again. The last climb I forced myself to take high, as some major shadow was cast in front.

A couple of weak low down climbs later, and I was on a marginal final glide - so marginal that I rolled across the line! But I will explain how that happened, it wasn't that bad... I finished at 80kts on base leg, made a 90* left hand turn onto finals. Made a normal landing and rolled off to the hangar side of the field. Later on, I analysed my trace, and if I wouldn't have gone towards the hangars, I wouldn't have finished!!

For some readers, Sorry to get your heart rate up!


P.s. The subject is 50:50, as it's now the 2nd out of 4 tasks that I've completed! So who knows what'll happen next weekend...

WR completes a task!

Date: 11/08/07
Flight Stats: 117km @ 73.56km/hr; 3.0kt avg climb and 38% climbing; 28.7:1 L/D for 10.6km cruises @ 67kts..

I knew it had to happen sometime, but on Saturday the 11th a small task was set after a late start. DDSC - Brookstead - Cecil City - DDSC = 117km FAI Triangle. To spoil the ending, I MADE MY FIRST LANDING BACK @ DDSC IN WR!!!

The weather was dry, cool and windy, like every weekend in the past 3 months. I took the smoothest, easiest climb all day to base right off tow. Jo, Richard and Bob were working their way up, but I looked at my watch and said to myself - sorry to be unsociable, but I've got to start straight away!

20km down the first leg, I hear them start. I felt like I had a horrible run, stopping very regulary, however picking some reasonable climbs. The best climbs of the day felt, ANGRY. If it wasn't chucking you around aggressively, then it wasn't the climb to be in. After making the 1st turn, I soon realised that I was holding my own against the others.

This quietly put me in a good frame of mind, the pressure was off, and I was working a safe height band. I did however get down to 800', but picked off the riverline and managed to get away in a 2kt climb. I wasn't listening to too much of what they had to say, as I myself was talking BS on the radio. Sorry guys...

I had a textbook climb low over the 2nd TP, which drifted me directly back towards the finish. I left it rather quickly though, as I feel like I'm starting to get my confidence back (as well as getting to know the glider better). Sure enough, picked up a nice final climb to get me on glide - for my first finish from a task in WR!

I wont talk about my competition finish, as I'm sure it'll attract a lot of attention. But in a word, I would have to describe it as 'EPIC'!!!

George Lee came for a competition preparation talk at DDSC, so all in all, a great Saturdays soaring..

Saturday, August 4, 2007

More ordrinary weather...

I can't believe how unlucky we've been here in SE QLD with the weather lately, the Thursdays, Fridays and Mondays have been the pick of the lot - with the weekends turning to worms. This weekend has started out no different, Windy (15kts on the Oakey forcast), cold and now some top level cloud..

The good news, DDSC have been very pro-active in the coaching game lately, this weekend George Lee is coming to visit in the morning to do a talk on, thermalling, cruising efficiency and task planning. Shane McCaffrey is doing a talk on glider tweaking and preparation. Ralph Henderson on sports psychology (part2).

Sunday, July 29, 2007


Date: 28/07/07
Location: DDSC
Conditions: Cold, blue, crappy stable day! In detail, South Westerly wind at a massive 21kts, 3000agl with 2kt climbs.
Aircraft: LS1-F GWR
Time Airborne: 1:31
Total Time on type: less than 10hrs
Trace: :(

Weekend report: The sky on the 27th just looked so impressive, and with a bright and early start I headed out to the field with high hopes of the day. Wind was calm and morning was cool.. The wings on, taped and ready to go by 9am it was soon time for the daily DDSC task and weather briefing.

The jaw dropped when I heard what was coming our way, as described above. The task was then reset to Chinchilla - Kingaroy - DDSC = 320km. We tow out the launch point at 10:45 and the wind is already starting to pick up with little warmth in the ground. Launch was around 11:30 and the task was again reset, Chinchilla - Jandowea N - then figure it out from there!


Soon after launch I was back down to cct height and struggling. Downwind, base (oh geez, is it worth taking another launch), then 3.5kts out of the ground! Climbed up to max height of the day in the best climb anyone came across. Spoke with my distorted ordinary radio to Allan (who was on my wingtip), lets start!

Across the 1km start line, the task ammended again, now to Chinchilla O/R (220km). Wingtip-to-wingtip, Allan and I head off. We discuss paths and obviously decide to head upwind of track, and over the darker paddocks with a river tree line running towards CHN. Already we notice that the glides are quiet long between climbs, although we both felt as though 70-75kts was about right.

The first glide was 32:1 for 17km, where we connected with a 2.4kts. I find these windy days extremely difficult, I can't quite picture the climb dynamics. I spoke with Allan afterwards in our post flight analysis, and he suggested what I already knew (but didn't want to admit), that I need to practice, practice, practice on the windy days. Tell myself, I really enjoy these days...

At the top of that climb, we head off together again. Another 32:1 for 11km! These glides and climbs have been hard yakka. I didn't quite connect with the next climb, allan pulling 600' on me. We both decide to head off at the same time, and cover as much ground on our next glide. The day is proving to be very difficult, and when Allan cores a climb 1500m right angles to me, I decide to divert and take it to the top..

I got the climb, but was broken and weak. I felt as though I had lost contact with allan and decided that we should now pass relevant information to eachother but fly our own flight from here until we join back up again.

I find a nice energy line and run it directly into win, unfortunately covering next to no distance towards the goal. After 7km, I turn back on track and aim for quite a bunch of trigger points. I was lining up for a paddock about 3-4km ahead of me while on the hunt. I managed to grab 2.1kts from 1000' up to a nose bleed height of 1800agl before loosing it and slogging back on task.

Then it all went pear shaped and egged closer to the Dalby aerodrome. The wind is now SW @ 17kts and I'm struggling. About 30minutes of struggling in the vacinity of the town, I was forced in anger to call it quits.. Damn, #2 XC of #2 XC's flown, I've ended up outlanding!

Back home in the box, in the hangar next to Mike-Fox...

The Retrieve was painless, with minutes after landing Shane McCaffrey rocking up from the end of his sons soccer match in town, offering me a lift back to the club! Allan, once again managed to scrape away and gain final glide a couple climbs later..

What did I learn today? I need a nice easy day to figure out how to make the LS1 climb efficiently, put a fast day in to get the confidence right up there again. The one thing I've found is that even though I haven't been able to get WR to climb yet, I have been getting it to really move along in the glides - so am happy with that.

Thanks to Allan for taking the time to fix WR radio, it now works ALL the time and very clearly! Cheers dude...

I hear there's rain coming this week, so hopefully we get it and it clears up in time for a really nice weekends soaring. It'll either be that, or I'll be heading north to tweak WR up and complete the Form2..

Over and Out,

Monday, July 23, 2007

First XC in GWR

Well, it's taken me 12 weeks after purchasing a 1/2 share in a LS1-f, GWR, that I've finally taken it out of the circuit! After seeing my syndicate partner taking WR for a run on Saturday, we de-rigged the glider and moved it north to the Darling Downs Soaring Club ( for the next month, where I'll be training with Allan Barnes for the Australian Club Class Nationals in Kingaroy ( Allan owns a LS1-f also, so should provide some excellent practice for our future in team flying.

We took an early launch with a planned task of a 100km FAI traingle, then complete it as many times as possible. The aim of the flight was to see how we fly together, compare gliders, go for rythm and to help set goals for the future. Unfortunately though, my radio was playing up so made things hard for our first flight together, however, we did see that it was going to be a partnership that should work.

The past 2 months of soaring in Australia have been dismal, Sunday 22nd was the first decent day we've seen for some time. My flight can be downloaded/seen here: Allans flight can be found here if your interested in overlaying the two with SeeYou:

My Stats: 177km @ 86km/hr, avg climb for the flight, 3.6kts (28% thermalling), 42.8:1 for 15.6km glides, 7% extra distance covered in diversions.

Was a nice day, cu's to 3500agl, 12kts of ESE winds which provided a bit of route planning and added challenge when low. I'm finding the LS1 to be a pleasant glider to fly, likes 75kts in the cruise and around the 50kt mark in the climb. Looking forward to spending another 50hrs in it to master the climb.

Unfortunately though, on the second leg of the second lap of the 100km task Allan and I hit some overdevelopment. The ground got cool, and the turnpoint looked horrible. I took my last climb to near base and headed off, unfortunately a little to fast. Allan was out in front calling back what he could while 5km ahead of me and about the same height. I rounded the turn (about 500' lower than allan) quiet low and headed for every trigger source I could find. Two hills and a red paddock later, I found myself very low. Couple turns here and there, until at 400' I decided to peel off and land in the paddock below (on the side of a hill!). All went well, Allan managed to scrape away and get glide to home (32km away) and came and picked me up about an hour later. Thanks mate.

Am very happy to be at the DDSC club, very energetic and XC goal orientated club. On the Sunday many took on the challenge of flying the first 400km flight of the season, unfortunately there were a couple of outlandings (on top of my own) after the overdevelopment. Heard all the o/l's went well, hope you all got back to the airfield safe and sound.

I'm hoping to keep this blog up to date with all my weekend preparations for future gliding championships, fingers crossed I'll be able to add a few pictures from time to time.

'til then, safe circles