Monday, April 14, 2014
Don ventured downrange first, followed by Thom and me. Those two flew down Greenwalls together while I benched up at Puu O Kona, but they soon came back to join me because it was drizzling back there. I took an outside line to tag Olomana in a light drizzle and got some nice thermic lift on the near corner, enough to blaze back directly to Puu O Kona, and then follow Thom and Don back to Makapuu.
I passed Thom on my way to the lighthouse, as he was benching up at hang launch for another lap. He didn't say that's what he was doing, but I'd like to think I know him pretty well. Dude! Are we really going back into the drizzle for a few measly XC league points? Well, okay, twist my arm! Double Chronic to Olomana coming up!
I tagged the lighthouse as I watched him disappear downrange again. I followed and arrived at Puu O Kona as he headed out toward Olomana. After a while he faded off his approach and wafted back to Greenwalls, while I took a more outside line and committed to pulling in at the three pointed peaks. It was not drizzling too badly, but there was an ominous thick dark line growing in front of me.
By this time Thom was complaining of rain at Puu O Kona and retreating to Makapuu. Unfortunately, as is sometimes the case, Olomana was not working well. I found myself at ridge height, bouncing around looking for a thermal and waving to the hikers up there. Finally I found enough to escape and dash directly behind to Greenwalls, arriving there feeling low, and also feeling some drizzle begin to fall back there. I got myself high enough to punch out into drier air and curve around Puu O Kona to return to Makapuu.
Meanwhile Doug and Dave made their way to Puu O Kona, and Thom ducked back for one last soaking. Dave embraced the drizzle in his own unique way, flying a cloud street from Puu O Kona directly to Lanikai, enjoying a misty lift line all the way there. He was so high when he arrived that he figured he'd continue downrange, and aimed for the Pali, but he soon got low and opted to pull in at Olomana to bench up. He found it just as challenging as I had, and he was stuck there for quite a while looking for lift there before finally getting up and coming back to join us at Makapuu.
As we ended our cross country trips, we all headed out over Rabbit island and enjoyed some very unusual lift lines that took us high up and well past the islet, and then we floated down to land and enjoy a long debriefing. Thanks to 5-0 and Dave for the excellent beverages. Thanks to Thom for egging me on to extend my flight! I ended up scoring my second highest cross country score of the year. And Thom scored his highest of the year. Hopefully Dave will get a computer sometime really soon now and upload his track so we can learn from the lines he flew as well!
Roll Call: Goto, Kenny, Mike Benson, Allegra, 5-0, Ike, Thom, me, Fireman, Cmdr John, Enleau, Bunok, Sebastian, Doug, Joey, Frank, Roland. And possibly others! Also I heard some guys flew Dillingham: Brian in his mini wing, and possibly also Drew and Steve.
Posted by Alex at 10:53 AM