Sunday, August 15, 2010

Epic Kahana XC Weekend

I flew and partied more this past weekend than I have in a long time. At least a week, anyway. Over thirty pilots came out to Kahana over the course of the weekend, along with lots of friends, family and furry companions. This is my last weekend in town before leaving for three weeks, and I was lucky to score three days in a row of epic Kahana XC flying with some great company.

On Friday, a bunch of pilots came out to celebrate in the air before heading over to Thom's for the meeting and party. We had low clouds at Kahana, and mostly easterly wind. I flew to Pounders at cloudbase with Reaper, landing at the mansion where he had to do a roof estimate. Thanks to Ginny for the ride back. Thanks to Thom and Donna for the great meeting and party venue!

On Saturday, lots of folks were out flying early, and I heard Scot flew to Pounders. I couldn't get out until 3 PM because of a family reunion, but when I got there I ran up the hill and climbed high above Kahana with Berndt in some gnarly thermals, finally getting high enough to cross the bay to Kualoa and back. It was his first time over there. He'd told me he didn't think his old wing would ever make it over, but on this day it was all about getting high in the right thermal.

On Sunday, I started early, tried to cross the bay, retreated and then missed my toplanding options, sank out, grabbed a sloppy joe with Thom and ran back up the hill, relaunched, tried to cross the bay twice more without success. Then Aron managed to get across, for his first time over there. He landed at Swanzy's and caught a ride back to town with Duck. Finally, Joey and I got high enough to make the crossing, and we flew a quick run to Kualoa and back. Thanks to LeeAnn for the radio, and to Sharky for the cold refreshments.

At the end of the day, what had been a really great flight ended badly for one unlucky monkey: after soaring the trees for a while, Joey snagged a tree on his approach and stalled his glider onto the beach from pretty high up, and was taken to the hospital, where they diagnosed a couple of lumbar compression fractures. Now he's recuperating at Pete's for a few days. Get well quick, Joey!


Anonymous said...

Thanks Alex..

It was a great day of flying and the XC to Kualoa was well deserved for what we put into it.
Not exactly the most pleasant ending, but the good outweighs the bad and this is just another eye-opening situation to help others to think about those dang trees. Ive seen so many of us hit them with no effect, but its only a matter of time before this can happen again.
I think Im goin on a stealth mission to cut down some trees :)

Again, thanks for all the help yesterday, I really appreciate my PG Ohana!!

~ Joey

ginny said...

Joey, you had better bring a REAL chainsaw! I really enjoyed this weekend, although still not flying. I love watching the monkeys flying: of the 1st Bay crossings for some, interesting tandem rides and the overall excitement all of you carry with you . Waking up to a beautiful sunrise Sunday morning was really worth camping out with minimal equipment. Hopefully, I will be joining you in the air soon.