Friday, June 29, 2012


Overall places
1st Doug Jacobs
2nd Sean franke
3rd Karl striedieck

Most are home

Just waiting for the scores. Pilots seem happy with the day. Enjoying the feeling of accomplishment at completing a nationals. And I never went on a retrieve! More soon,

Final contest day underway

I have emerged from the cloud of dust at the end of runway 22 on the last contest day. The task is a TAT Salinas (30) Wayne (15) bryce (25) beaver (19) we shall see how the scores shake out at the end of the day.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Pictures from day 5

A few pics from the day. Note that Michelle Sorenson is the best mom around - wiping son Danny's wings at the end of the day.

Day 5 Complete

Another windy day, but we managed to get a contest day in today. The task was a Turn Area Task, 4 hour minimum: Mt. Carmel Junction, Wayne's Wonderland, White Pine Peak, and Bald Hills. A few pilots decide

The winds at launch time were in the 15-20 range, gusting higher at times. Lots of blowing dust. This was one of those days where you would apply lip balm and immediately find it Caked in the talc-like brown dirt. Yum! Since it was bright and sunny, you could easily play the favorite game "Dirt or sunburn?" with your crew friends while waiting to be released from the far end of runway 22.

It was certainly a challenging launch environment, but pilots who found lift off tow, were up and away. There was a beautiful cloud field stretching from the Grand Canyon all the way they wal past Wayne's Wonderland. A large fire cropped up south of Cedar City, and smoke was increasing as we settled in to the campground at the airport this evening. Overall, pilots seemed to say this was a hard day, but fun, and beautiful.

I checked out the dinosaur footprints I have been meaning to see since 2005. Lots of fun for us, too! Looked like therapods - something three-toed, anyway. I have learned from watching Dinosaur Train that therapods had three toed feet, lots of teeth for eating meat, great big tail for balancing well and therapods have a great sense of smell.

Two more days to go. Perhaps I am losing it?
More soon,

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Tues cancelled due to wind

Just got back from gridding on 22 in the wind. Have fine grit in teeth. Maybe tomorrow?

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Launch underway

Launch is underway now. Sun is coming along well.

We were waiting on the grid for a while. A big wave cloud was sitting overhead and blocking the heating so we are hanging out on the runway.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Launch underway for day 2

We are mid-launch now (14:10 local) and so far no re-lights. There's a cu over a high peak - delano I think - so we know where they are heading. That-a-way.  It's currently a 3 hour turn area task. Will keep you posted.

Day cancelled

With pretty strong winds today, the day was called off after a short wait on the grid. I enjoyed the day-off activities of laundry, dairy freeze, and grocery shopping. We spoke with Bob Farris who had flown anyway, and it sounded like he had a good time. The forecast for Saturday looks similar to today, so we will see what CD Gary Kempe's plan for us is.
More soon,

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Day 1 Complete

Well, with the difficult weather we had to work with, today's task was changed to the alternate task of a 2.5 hour modified assigned task (MAT) with Pole Mountain and Chalk Hollow as the first 2 turns. It was tough getting up at the start. Once on course, gliders were seen to be operating everywhere from 7,000 to 10,000 MSL, all of which is very low for Parowan, which sits at 5,930, so yeah, 7,000 isn't very high! Rock polishing was the order of the day for some. The run to Pole Mtn. was mostly gaggle flying in two main routes. Once there, the decision was whether to head out into the valley at Beaver or to pick your way around via the high ground. Chalk Hollow brought another decision. Many opted to head straight home at this point. Others tried to add mileage.

We did have a number of landouts. One friend of ours suffered the wrath of a farmer and his sons, who tried to demand payment for access to their field. They said they had a bad experience with a glider landing there a couple of years ago (or were just nutty, I don't know). So remember, be nice to the farmers!

Oh, did I mention that it was entirely blue today? Yes, it was. It was also a few degrees cooler than yesterday.

More soon,

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Task shortened

2 1/2 hour task now. A few have come back early. Expect finishers around 5:30

Day 1 begins

A cold front passed by overnight, and it's slightly cooler and calm this morning. Our task is a TAT white pine peak (25) table mountain (20) min time 3 hours. It should be similar to yesterday, blue, but less wind to chop up the lift. More soon!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Practice Day 2 at Parowan

We took the day off, seeing the forecast as fairly challenging, hot & blue with tricky winds. And hey, ey has struggled at parowan before - he doesn't need that kind of practice! Somewho did fly reported that it was indeed hard work. We had a few landouts. Everyone attended the welcome dinner & safety meeting. The tasty bbq was provided by Jeff & Jane, the local bbq purveyors. Getting ready for the first contest day on Weds.
More soon,

Legends of Soaring

The legends of soaring. They are just like us. They spend the afternoon involved in maintenance. Doug Jacobs & Karl Striedieck having fun?

Practice Day 1 at Parowan

Steady winds all day, reports of good lift. The practice task seemed to be a good call - all in the blue, but good climbs and good ridges to run.

It's definitely very dry and very bright slash sunny here. It's that searing rocky mountain sun and clear light you expect from the mountain west at almost midsummer. The camping area at the airport is filling up, the USAFA team arrived this afternoon, so it's starting to look like a nationals around here. 
More soon,

Monday, June 18, 2012

Typical Parowan grid on rwy 22 - lots of pushing up!
Practice day 1 ey

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Pre-Contest at Parowan 2012

Greetings from the Parowan, Utah airport! Having arrived among the early birds on Friday, it has been fun to see so many friends roll in over the weekend. This Sports Class Nationals includes one world champion (Doug Jacobs) and many legendary pilots, U.S. Team members, national champions, etc. It’s clear that Sports Class isn’t just an “entry class” any more. And don’t forget all of the Club Class ships – Uli Neumann with GM Libelle 301, the Frankes LS-3s (are they twin ships? I haven’t looked up closed yet), a Jantar Std., our SZD-55, and more.

Many of our great friends are already here, favorite SCUM members, and more are expected over the next days. So when I tell my co-workers that I am spending MY summer vacation camping on a dusty airport in southern Utah, I suppose that is not the whole story. This is a camp of soaring gypsies, some of whom spend nearly all summer on the road doing just this. Some of them are new at it, just figuring the whole thing out. Some have been competing since the 60’s. It’s hard to explain why any of us (but SCUM in particular) want to do this – spend our free time on some remote and often dusty airport, supporting pilots who think racing engineless aircraft around all afternoon is the best fun there is. Apparently, I agree with them. This is a great sport, because of the great people in it.

We also remember and carry on in memory of those friends who are no longer with us, from Charlie Spratt and Lite, to many pilot friends we have lost due to illnesses or accidents. No contest will be the same without them, and we keep on racing with them in mind and heart, always.

We will have our first practice day on Monday, though many flew today. My pilot had a good flight on Saturday, so we took today off to get ourselves organized.

More soon,