Tuesday, July 10, 2007

It's about - Time

After much procrastination - or too much flying time - it's about time to try and write an article - just a short story of Sunday July 8th impromptu gathering of a number of pilots at Kahana Bay for some great flying. Sorry I don't have the gift of colorful grammatics like Frank. The flyers I remember - Billy, Christine, Claude (Scrappy), Eric (Mililani), Eric (Sharky), Ginny, Hillbilly, Jeff (Stalker), Jim (me, one-eye), Joey (P3), Ken (Airborne), Pete (Rehab, UNITY, Suicide), Scot (red-head), Steve, & visitor (Eric from Portland I think). Peruvian Phil was doing some kiting on the beach LZ too.

The morning started out a little ratty with Steve (high normal launch) and Eric (Mililani) (North ridge) getting off almost simultaneously and making it look easy to get up. Although later Eric said he barely made it off launch in a light cycle, we couldn't tell from our perspective. Shortly after Hillbilly took off in a light cycle from normal high launch and seemed to be struggling just to stay level with launch height. The wind seemed to die off after Hillbilly took off leaving Ginny, Joey, and me hanging on the high launch. Both Steve and Eric were reporting some bumpy air. Hillbilly tried jumping over to the north ridge and shortly made a nice top landing over there to wait for some better wind. Unfortunately Hillbilly got called in to work before the wind came up again.

In the meantime Eric and Steve both got tired of getting bounced around and headed in to land. They both had what they described as their "worst LZ" conditions ever on approach and landing. Christine & Billy showed up to wait out the wind with us.

An hour or so later the wind finally was coming back and I got to be the wind technician for the second round. Joey (highest flight yet 2400 AGL), Billy and Christine all followed me off after a bit (not sure of launch order for them though). A bit later Scrappy helped Billy (nice belly draggin') and Christine off. This was the main group I flew with for a couple hours, the conditions seemed to get better as the day wore on - just goes to show the early bird doesn't always get the best flying conditions. I called it quits to go pursue other amusements (do I hear that Beer calling me).

Pete got off high launch all by himself after fighting some nasty line impediments. Scot led a trio helping out Eric (Sharky) - great to see you in the air man - and the visitor, then launched himself. Scot then went on a downranger to Pounders all by himself. Airborne Ken made a surprise appearance while there were still a bunch of people flying - incoming special ops. As usual Ken came and went without saying much to anyone (at least that I observed). And last off the hill Jeff (Stalker) who made a late show to hang with his wife and nephew. Joey and I also visited with some hikers who were way up on KNA ridge - you can just make them out in the blown up pic below.

Not much of a story - better than none though I guess.


Rich. said...

Nice article Jim; though, For the record, both Joey and I made several high launches from Woodrat (3800 ASL). With the LZ @ 1200 ASL, even the sledders were 2600 AGL. We both enjoyed at least one flight with BIG FAT THERMALS where we soared 800 to 1000ft above launch! Reaper was deligthted & proud.

Waianae Jim said...

Richard, I meant to clarify Joey's highest flight at Kahana. Aloha, Jim

Anonymous said...

Aloha Jim,

Nice recount of the day. Good fun hanging with everyone (especially The Breakfast Club.)

I would like to just acknowedge Hillery's part in the day.

Although she did not fly or kite, she did ensure that the BBQ grill was available to and stocked with dogs for the hungry pilots and famliy members.

(Suicide UNITY, Rehab)

Waianae Jim said...

Peter - You're absolutely correct - Hillery does deserve mention for her outstanding support of paraglider pilots in Hawaii, especially you. now where can I find a girlfriend like her?
Aloha, One-Eye

Anonymous said...

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Lots of women looking for single, adventurous men.