07 Juni 2015

200km FAI triangle - finally some flying weather!

It was great to see a kind of good weather forecast after a more than average May. Thermals started late (for a really good day), base was below 2000m at launch, and there were storms in the forecast for late afternoon, but I was positive anyway. 
When I arrived at Hochfelln at 8am, it was a good sign to run into Toni Raumauff and Dieter Müglich who were unloading their rigid wings, while Patrick Ruber had already lined up for the first gondola up the mountain. 
On the way up, I got a call from Ecki, he said he will be there very soon too with his Atos. Also Tom Becher was on his way. So nice to go flying with friends! 
Bezillions of paragliders took off very soon and marked the slow and low lift for us. The run to Wilder Kaiser was not easy, but I had an excellent rigid wing pilot with me (I think it was Markus Hoffmann-Guben) who helped me find the strongest cores of the patchy thermals. 
The run into Pinzgau was exciting, I think I never went over Wildkogel so low before (2500m) (there are no easy bombout landing for quite a while in those high valleys, just steep slopes). But then I was rewarded with the "Pinzgauer Spaziergang", an easy run along a cloud street for about 60km :) well - first of all I cut my planned distance short a bit because it already looked too dark towards Zillertal, and I didn´t want to get stuck. 
After flying almost without turning and catching up with Toni half way to Schmittenhöhe, I enjoyed flying with this top pilot until Hundstein, where we hit the beamer of the day, 6,5m, up to cloud base in 2 minutes :) and finally base was at a comfortable 3000m. 
The run back out was scenic, but also quite rough along the steep cliffs of Steinernes Meer. After 6,5 hours of flying I was happy to finally land in walking distance of my car, Also Ecki, Toni and Patrick made it back (Dieter had landed in Kössen), Toni and Patrick with an incredible 300km triangle (great effort for this day), and Ecki with 170km as his first rigid wing XC flight! 
Now I have to work another five days and will be back just in time for the Austrian Nationals in Kössen on Friday, hope we get some great weather there too!
My 200km FAI triangle got me up into 5th rank of our German XC competition, so I took a screenshot - it´s nice to be in the top 5 for once!

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