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Kielder reservoir


dantheman
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Have had an amazing flight around the North Tyne valley, fulfilled a lifelong dream to fly around my old stomping ground.

Weather was peachy pefect and just this morning I secured a new farmers field to use away from the lambing. Was my favourite flight to date, a lot of people I know were out waving when I circled overhead but I had to surpress the urge to do low flypasts as all the fields in the valley were full of ewes in lamb. The visibility was so clear you could see into Scotland and with the WSW I could have made the beach at Seahouses in under 2 hours but I was under orders to be home for a family dinner so had an hour to stay local and take a few snaps.

I think I'll be offering a helping hand to the farmer for the next few days to thank him for use of his field.

Not had chance to edit the pics so here are a few teasers before I update my flying blog

Circling the take off field

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Now familiar boots

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Kielder reservoir

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Landing

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Thanks chaps, it's a lovely place - so far from civilisation they say Kielder is the remotest village in England and famous for it's night skies as it's so dark.

I woke up this morning to find (as expected) that it was the third flyable day in a row, a very weak ridge of high pressure has stayed over the North of England making it a fantastic Easter weekend for the Geordies. There was a frost last night and the water troughs for the animals were frozen over, even the ice warning was on the dashboard as I nipped up into the field - definately a double T shirt morning.

The valley was a bit misty but as the sun burned through it the wind picked up to reversible strength.

Still puffing after lugging the kit up the fellside from the car I launched East down the valley towards Bellingham, mild bumps encouraged me to go fast trim which slowed my ascent but I found a mild inversion at 3K which kept my blood from freezing.

Puffy clouds were forming below, and as I dropped to circle a friends farm the bumps returned so after a few circuits to photo their pad I bombed back up above the clouds to smooth air. After 40 mins I had only covered 10 miles into wind so after a couple of photos of Bellingham through the mist I turned back. The downwind leg was quite fast and I was overtaking bank holiday tourists on the C200 below, the bikers were keeping up but I had the advantage of no blind bends with tractors to slow me down.

Back up the valley the reservoir came into view, covered in sailing boats, as I brought the camera into focus the "memory full" warning flashed up and this combined with the fact that both my "retrieve crew" were only around for another 1/2 hour and the sun was creating stronger thermals made me circle back to the fell to land.

A mildly bumpy descent and the sudden drop in wind made me go around for another landing attempt which was perfect, and witnessed by a couple of hikers having a cuppa taking in the view.

Today is the last day before the Notam for Spadeadam range is reactivated and I'm sharing the valley with 600mph Typhoons. :shock:

Clouds forming

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Briaredge Farm - used to make hay here

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Thanks Felix, just spotted an article in the Hexham Courant covering my antics....

WAS it a bird? Was it a plane? What was that strange contraption seen buzzing up and down the valley a couple of weekends ago?

It was in fact former Bellingham Middle School pupil and ex-Stannersburn resident Dan Sanderson, testing out the latest must-have mode of transport, the paramotor.

You just take a fibre glass wing, and strap a motor to your back, and away you go.

He tells me that paramotoring is the cheapest way into powered flight.

The whole machine packs into a car boot and can be flown from almost any small flat field, with a flight duration of up to four hours.

He can cruise between 25-40 mph, which means very low level “hedge hopping” is not only possible, but great fun.

Surprisingly, no licence is required to fly one.

Not quite sure where they got the fibre glass wing from but that's journalism for you 8)

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