Tuesday, November 08, 2016
So waking up Sunday morning to sparse low clouds on the Koolaus, and light winds gently blowing in my door, I already had a rush of excitement about a possible rare treat of cross country flying on the Koolaus.
Alex texted that he was out for flying that day, but I have known him long enough not to believe him. I headed out to see Maui Doug overhead, Slacker launching Cactus and Joey launching Juice. I hiked to Juice and as I neared the top I felt that my glider bag was really heavy. I had that sinking feeling that I just accidentally carried my tandem up. I looked around for a passenger and then scooted back to Hawaii Kai to get my solo glider.
Now close to an hour behind, I climbed up and started heading towards Waimanalo. The three amigos, Doug, Don and Slacker, were already on Greenwalls. There were a bunch of people assembling behind me for a similar goal, and even Alex had shirked his responsibilities and had raced home to drop off Logan and pick up the Peak 4.
The lift was smooth and light, but steady. Puu O Kona had some strange southeast thing going on, but conditions improved a lot by Greenwalls. It was a beautiful day, with very light wind, and a few cloud streets here and there, just a great day to be up high. I caught up with most of the guys at Haiku Stairs and we continued on our way. Doug turned back at Temple Valley for the sure thing. Don, Joey and I headed down to Waikane.
Joey stated that this was as far as he had ever been, which I took as a bit of a challenge to try to go farther. We looked at BoogaBoogaland, but being under 3,000 feet in pretty light lift and north wind didn't make it seem too guaranteed. Plus, by this time, Don had gotten a little lower and showed us that it was hard to get back up. Don took the long glide to Hygienics Store, where Sidehill Thom ran a retrieve.
Joey spotted a cloud forming over the Pyramid, so I quickly headed that way. But by the time we got there the forming cloud had become a dull grey sheet. There was barely a beep of lift to be found, but I loitered for a while, hoping for a late day release, and finally glided off on a long glide through Kaaawa Valley with Joey behind. It was absolutely still when we landed near the front. Duck scooped us up for the ride to Hygienics, where Thom was waiting for Don to finish eating. Great retrieves, great friends.
Some sixteen pilots flew, with a few more stopping by. Just a great day, after so many windy cloudy days on the east side, and totally unexpected. Let's do it again!
Posted by firedave2 at 11:30 PM