Time: 13:05 - 13:45 (GMT)
Aircraft: Ikarus C42 - G-CDRO
Old Sarum (again)
Another familiar story this week - Ian, Colin Jac and I had hoped to go to Stapleford, Andrewsfield and Panshanger today - the weather had other ideas. The clouds appear to be suffering from vertigo and refuse to leave the ground. The TAFs aren't looking good, but there is a slim chance, so I make my way to the airfield. When I get there, it seems the other have been much more sensible and are staying at home to see how it progresses. It looks like the mist is beginning to burn-off a bit but not quick enough. Clive has got the gyro out and takes off - whilst tracking up 03 he evaporates an about 400 - 500' - hmmm. Ian gives me a call whilst I an standing near the signal T and whilst chatting suddenly says "ooh, I can see you on the webcam". It turns out that Colin and Jac try to call me at exactly the same time and also see me on the webcam and guess that I am talking to Ian. We decide to leave it to about 11:30 and then meet up at the airfield, if only for some bacon butties - our original plan is completely out of the question.
Later on, after a bit of social, some of the clouds have ventured up a little but it's still not brilliant. We decide to try for somewhere a bit more achievable - Old Sarum. We get a couple of C-42's out and prep them. I am flying Colin on the outbound leg and we take off on 08, behind the others. Apart from the initial climbout, the whole flight is conducted between 1000' and 1500' due to the cloudbase. As parachuting operations were in progress at Old Sarum we flew round the far side and joined base (as is their instructions) and had to fly around the clouds whilst at circuit height. We park up and get some tea and bacon butties. We also meet Patrick there who it seems has taken a share in a C-42 here.
Once we are refreshed, Colin flies me back home. It's not much better. We pass by the Cathedral and Alderbury and past Chilbolton (which we understand is still open) and back through the smog to Popham. Here he completes an extra circuit and gets forced further downwind by someone doing a lazy straight-in approach.
Oh well - the best we could do with the given weather, and my first point for the AlphaBet challenge! (see www.AlphaBetChallenge.org.uk).
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