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Saturday at Southport.


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Hi All,

Just an update about yesterdays flying. Went early up to Southport as the weather was looking good. Unfortunately a little choppy and variable when I got there delayed take off till the wind settled a little.

Feeling brave decided to have a go at 11.00. Possibly a little l;ate as it was beginning to get thermic.

Reverse launch (only my second one) went remarkably well and I left the ground and began climbing fairly well. Hit some gusts just above 100ft and I seemed to be going really slowly. Still climbing but now bumpy as hell. At this point I did wonder quite why I had decided to take off.

However once I was above 400ft it smoothed out considerably and I continued to climb well up to around 800ft for a cruise around. Feeling quite chipper at this point I was delighted to be in the air again. A little back and forth above the field waiting for some of the others to come and join me but nobody did. Maybe they didn't like the way I was getting a little bumped around.

Sure over the black field there was some choppy stuff but the Synth just hung in there and inspired huge confidence. Trims fully out, brakes stowed and just using weight shift I was having a ball.

Exploring a little further I noticed a little more chop and then super smooth but now the vario was screaming. Even when I backed off the throttle I was climbing at a hell of a lick. I tried to turn into the thermal (but truly didn't know which way was in or out...) and was at 1200ft in what felt like the blink of an eye. Wow that was cool. Free height!

Exit from the thermal was equally rough and at this point I foolish looked up at my wing. It certainly was moving about a lot more than I was and this was not too comforting. However I still felt fairly safe.

Circling back to the field I did a couple of relatively low passes to check on the wind direction and trimmed for landing (Neutral). Came down onto two feet feeling bloody great!!! This was my tenth hour of paramotoring and my hundredth hour of total airtime! Quite a flight. I was buzzing.

:launchland: :launchland: :launchland:

Hung around at lunch time just chilling and chatting. The afternoon looked pretty rough and the wind direction was variable again so I was happy to be back on the ground. However by 4.30 it had settled a lot and allowed me to get a pretty reasonable forward launch including a little foot dragging before climbing away. Probably no one else noticed but I felt good. Further bumming around ensued but the wind was getting lighter and I still hate nil wind landings.

I tried setting -2 on the red zone and came in as slow as I thought I could. a little wobbly at just 50 feet meant a slightly sideways landing and a slip onto just one knee. Not too bad but still not what I wanted.

However all told another two hours on the flight log and forward and revers launches with nil wind and reasonable wind landings so a really great day.

Hope you all had as much fun as I did.


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