Thursday, April 23, 2009

Kahana permit officially renewed

I stopped in at the DLNR office yesterday, to sign the long-delayed renewal of our Kahana permit. Afterwards I headed out to enjoy a rare solo flight at Kahana, in perplexing but nice soarable conditions, joined by Jim for the last half hour or so.

I hiked up even though the wind was feeling ridiculously light, with the sensor reporting an average of just 1 mph at Punaluu most of the day. I guess I just hoped I would find something up there. Strange to think Nick and Frank were describing windy conditions as they flew Makapuu.

But by the time I arrived up at launch, the breeze was miraculously starting to fill in nicely, and I quickly launched and climbed up over Puu Piei to reach cloudbase at around 2,400 feet. It was quite overcast, and it turned out to be one of those confusing days where I really couldn't tell if the airflow was more easterly or more northerly - at various times it really seemed to predominate one way or the other.

Either way, I was happy to make it across the bay three times to work the light easterly flow over the Crouching Lion. On one of those missions I made it all the way around the corner to a point somewhere above Bobos BBQ, but I soon returned because it started to feel a bit too easterly over there, like it was blowing me offshore. On my third attempt, I found very little to work over the Crouching Lion, but then I found a strange fat column of lift a few hundred yards offshore, and managed to work it there for a while until I saw Jim heading in to land.

As I followed him in, I noticed that the surface of the bay was starting to show big holes in the airflow, with glassy patches and cats paws all over. We both managed to come in for safe but interesting landings, and after we had hung out for a while to enjoy some refreshments, we noticed the wind had become so light that it was actually blowing offshore at the LZ. It sure is nice to be on the ground having a cold beverage when that happens.

Thanks to Jim for keeping me company at the end there. And thanks for the Chilean Pinot Noir, can't wait to try it.


MauiDoug said...

Thank you Mr. President! for all of the official jobs you do for us all!

Anonymous said...

This and many other reasons is why you are the KING of KAHANA.

Thanks Alex.


Sharky said...

Thanks Alex for doing the renew!


Alex said...

Okay, that's enough, you guys! I just posted the permit notice as an excuse to write up a flight story. When I noted that the renewal was long-delayed, I should have pointed out that the delay was mostly my fault - I was late getting the process started and then a bit lax with my follow-up. But if you really have to show some gratitude, follow my example and blow off your responsibilities to join me for some flying one of these days. How about today?