Friday, November 23, 2007

Giving Thanks

Fifteen pilots flew Kahana on Thanksgiving Day, including three visitors. Seven pilots managed to do some cross country flying in various directions, with one flight in particular standing out as a local site record. Read on for details.

After three straight days trying and failing to make these northerly breezes do my bidding, I finally harnessed them to fly for six hours yesterday. I actually flew six times, if you count the five toplandings (and one bomb-out on a failed bay crossing attempt). I made a round trip to Kualoa early in the day by myself, and later I followed Dave to Kaaawa a second time, along with three other guys, but he ditched us and headed back through Kaaawa Valley to hopscotch from Ohulehule to the back range. A couple of very low saves later, he was on his way and flying to Makapuu for a local record. Doug caught a thermal to three grand over Puu Piei, jumped to Sacred Falls, and started to head into Boogaland to meet Dave on the other side, but the air back there wasn't to his liking, so he headed out of there and back to Kahana soon after.

Chandler flew to Pounders just before the five of us jumped the bay the other way. The wind was very finicky all day, coming in and out in waves to alternately buoy us up and let us down. But it always came back, and was still pumping at the end of the day when Laurent made the final bay crossing into the sunset, never to return - I assume he caught the bus from somewhere over there.

Peter had a great day flying to Kualoa for the first time, after I'd been talking about it to him all week. Visiting pilot Wataru enjoyed a great first Hawaii flight. And of course many other pilots flew too: Ken, Frank, Jetflap, Ray, Berndt, Scot, Russell, to name a few - at one point there were around ten in the air over the north face of the Kahana ridge.

Scrappy hit a light cycle over Kaaawa and had to declare an emergency landing at Kaaawa School, but he was a good sport and kindly provided refreshments for the final crew at the end of the day's flying. Thanks, Scrappy! And thanks to everyone else who came out to enjoy some holiday airtime and camaraderie. I am leaving tonight for a two week business trip on the east coast, so I am especially thankful to have finally got myself seriously airborne before I go. See you all in December!


firedave said...

I think Marty DeVietti did the flight tandem with his wife, earlier this year.

Alex said...

He did - that's why I qualified yesterday's flight as a "local" flight record. Plus I doubt he landed at the Heiau, so you flew farther by a few hundred meters.