F'ing cold but worth the pain :-)

Just after Al’s excellent briefing

My first proper outing of the year found me at Talybont with the usual suspects (minus Ken, haha!) for a BCC vs. Dover & Folkstone and Thames Valley (I think). The sky was looking epic and the wind just about spot on, so without further ado Alex took off and I followed him shortly afterwards. Ten minutes later I was climbing out and on my way to my first (hopefully of many) xcs of the year. Over the high ground strong lift (4m/s) and equally strong sink was the order of the day with base at 5,300’ asl, but over the cider country flatlands the climbs were more gentle and I never got above 3,500’ (which was well below a slightly lower base). I landed near the village or Hoarwithy (53km with turnpoints) and had a dream retrieve back to Talybont (for once!) - a Malverns PG pilot called Dave Quinn was driving past with his wife, they watched me land, came over then drove me all the way back!!! That has to be worth a pint or three next time I see them - thanks V much Dave & Sarah...

I had hoped to take lots of photos but my hands were like blocks of ice after ten minutes, and my fingers felt like they’d fall off given a sharp tap, so I didn’t even try I’m sorry to say... Next time!

Meanwhile a few others had got away for 15-25km flights (Graham, Rod, Alex), but the wind picked up leaving the rest unable to take off safely. Moral of the story - don’t hang around chatting, you’re here to fly, so take off! Sorry if that sounds blunt, but you’ve got to be in the air to go anywhere!

Anyway, Avon won the day... Hurrah!