The vultures are soaring. In any normal person's story, a sign of dread. But for me, joy!
I had gambled on it being flyable by not gliding down to the valley for a morning of drudgery on the road. There was a lot of cloud overnight and it was misty at 8 but then the sun broke through and the birds began to swoop through the wisps.
I woke with a smile. That's a good way to welcome fortune, I find.
But now I didn't need to intend the smile; it was fixed in place from the evening before, when I had crawled into my tent, too tired to wash, too smelly to care, and too elated at what I'd experienced that I didn't know how to contain my joy, except to lie on my back and spread my spirit out wide across the night sky.
Advance Iota: simple, and lightweight for a standard production glider. Performed well in a wide range of conditions. Next time I'll get an even lighter wing, it's really worth it for bivi flying to reduce weight wherever possible.
Kolibri harness: swallowed up all gear and had room to spare.
In the UK we fly near to clouds a lot, because the airmass is usually moist and the cloudbase is low. Small cumulus clouds can be fun, but large ones can become a problem. How can you tell the difference? Greg Hamerton analyses a recent XC flight that became a little too lifty…