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February 2003 

Sunday 23rd February 2003

Report from Dave Daniels.

    A first visit to Southbourne was most enjoyable managing 250ft ato. I declined the jump across the gap in Bournemouth on seeing Steve A land on the beach immediately after his attempt.
    Apparently it had been flyable since 9am!
    Dave M, Peter K, Adrian B, Tom K, Brian M, Martin H, Fiona D, Luigi and Keith W were also there.
    Most significant thing to occur was Dave M taking one very game 83yo lady for a tandem flight that she most obviously enjoyed!

Untitled-6.jpg (101133 bytes) Untitled-9.jpg (81226 bytes) Untitled-17.jpg (71192 bytes)
Keith W assists Dave M to strap himself to the back of an 83yo lady. "119 years" fly the cliffs @ Southbourne. Didn't she do well!

Report from RW.

    Gaz M & Dr Chas were at White Horse & flying shortly after 0900hrs. I arrived at 1100hrs & it was gusting upto 20mph.
    Just after 1200hrs we were in the air after some intrepid take offs - Gaz made it look so easy. Then Mike R arrived and said he couldn't believe it was flyable - but was in the air soon enough.
    After a brief luncheon Sean L & his lovely lady Nicole arrived with Ally F from Swanage.
    I have to say Ally F was very well mannered in the air keeping out of everyone's way & even bottom landing so as not to cause offence , what a star!!! Some others could do well to emulate his impeccable manners.
    (But I thought Ally F was red ribbon - so shouldn't everyone be keeping out of his way and going down if necessary? Perhaps "keeping out of the way" translates into "was intimidated by so many other more experienced pilots that failed to give the red ribbon pilot the space he should get" ? DD)
    Later in the afternoon Martin F & Pete R arrived and people were still flying in the orographic after 1700hrs.
    Quite unexpected flying on what appeared to be an unflyable day.
    Where were you all ?
( ..ummmm... Bournemouth? :) And in any case - even though I thought about WH - it's a long slog from Winchester on a day that promised nothing. DD)

Saturday 22nd February 2003

Report from Dave Daniels.

    ENE @ 12mph - so off to the office via Whitewall/Mercury.
    John Pinchin was launching his new Vibe as I arrived to join Mike Shippham in the air. It was a good 12 ... to 15 - and John's wing pitched merrily at the north end of the ridge. The forecast was for it to go stronger - I had loads of work to do (so that I can escape on those enviable weekdays!) and headed off to the office.
    I hear Whitewall and Mercury were flown for a good chink of the day - hangies predominating at Mercury - according to Tom Keene.

Friday 21st February 2003

Report from John Harvey.

    Folly Hill. Yes flyable.
    Arrived early with cloud-base on the hill and light wind.
    Around 11am c/b lifted, and so with only two of us (MR, and myself) quite a lot of space though light wind still. Sun then broke through and wind picked up, with small thermals kicking off ploughed field.
    Andy Pearse arrived as did several Wessex members - RW, Alan Crabb, Gary Mullins, Sean Lovatt, 
    Departed 2.30pm as other Condors/ Wessex arrived D Tewson, C Forsey, Richard Sheriden, Harry Dyke - but by then wind speed on t/o 15mph min. A good couple of hours flying today.
    Later in the afternoon winds became more friendly and flyable again.
(NB: This is a Flying Frenzy school site, so please contact Andrew Pearse for permission to fly, each and every time.)

Report from RW.

    After a number of weather reports & phone calls SE & freshening Alan C & I went Bowleaze Weymouth for a little ground handling.
    A call from Mike R ( Condors ) with an invitation to Foley was well received & passed to others. On arrival 2 wings in the air less than 100' ATO but flyable. A short wait for permission from Andy P & we were in the air. Some suggestions from John H & Mike R & it was beginning to become enjoyable even though it was a little lumpy.
    An hour later & there were 16 wings in the air, my how news travels fast!
    All the diehards were there Gaz M, Sean L, Alan C ( Crabbie ) myself , Flying Frenzy students & Condor pilots.
    Thanks to Andrew Pearce for his advice & friendly attitude 

Sunday 9th February 2003

Report from John Jones.

    Pretty windy, but three HG's flew, myself, Ron and Phil. The helicopter hovering for a long time out in front of the hill was a little disconcerting, but it was too windy anyway for any thermals to be much good.
    A big "Thank you!" to Dave Moore and friend (whose name I didn't quite catch), who spent quite some time in the cold helping me to sort my glider out. 

Report from Dave Daniels.

    "Honest Boss!  I did try and spend a day in the office getting up to date - but these guys I know kept phoning me and asking if I was coming out to play!"
    So - after three hours in the office the lure of some first class para-waiting was irresistible and I was on my way to Bell Hill .... from Godalming, via Winchester to collect my kit!
    The nearer I got, the more obvious it was totally blown out - but a car loaded with coffee was welcomed by those on the hill - Craig B, Dave M, Mike B, Gary P, Dave's friend Rory and a couple of others. Three hangines were twitching around in a lively fashion above - ZZ, Ron S (I believe) and John J. 
    The reason there were so many para-waiters in these conditions was the weather forecast that the wind would ease .... but in those temps the lure of somewhere warm quickly exceeds the desire to find out if the forecasters actually know their a**es for their meteorological elbows - exspecially since the 4 litres of coffee had been quickly consumed! Charles C-S - with dog - put in a brief appearance - the dog getting more out of the trip to Bell than Charles.
    A warming spell at a local hostelry and the sky was clear of cloud - Gary P, Dave M, Rory and others returned to the hill to find that the wind had eased..
    The light was fading - but 20mins and 220ft was worth it! The air was silky "coastal" smooth - but the gradient necessitated bar at +200ft.
    (The Shogun makes more sense every time I go there in muddy conditions. Sorry Alfa - you're for the chop! Anyone want an 17month old 156 2.5 Veloce in immaculate condition?) 

Thursday 6th February 2003

Report from Dave Daniels.

    Not exactly flying, but .... 
A thronged meeting room at The Commodore for the draw of the Mighty Wessex Bell Hill Fund Raffle - the draw being made by Emily Byrne, Craig's daughter and frequent tandem passenger!.
    Raffle results.

A crowded room at the Commodore DSCN1345.jpg (139538 bytes)
Emily digs deep into the 911 tickets DSCN1346a.jpg (107726 bytes)
Stuart Martin flooks 1st prize!
(Fix! Fix! Fix!)
DSCN1348a.jpg (100404 bytes)

Wednesday 5th February 2003

Report from RW.

    Another fabulous day at Bell Hill!! 
It was thermic and although I do not believe anyone got away, it was not for the lack of trying. 
    I popped a cell in my wing due to an awkward landing ( I promise one day I will get it RIGHT )
    The morning started at 1030hrs with it a little top end with Hangies Ron & John waiting to take off. But us brave souls (aka paraglider pilots) went for it and did not get pushed back. 
    At on stage there were 22 paragliders in the air and 2 hang gliders - all enjoying the good conditions. It was a much better day than expected with height gains of over 750' ato. 
(far too) regulars were there - Brian M, Luigi, Alan C, John M, Mike A, John A, Nicky, John (Blue wing), Gaz M, Peter R, Martin F, Mark R and Jim C - and apologies to those I did not recognise.

Eye in the Sky - January 2003
Eye in the Sky - November/December 2002
Eye in the Sky - October 2002
Eye in the Sky - September 2002
Eye in the Sky - August 2002 - Part 2
Eye in the Sky - August 2002 - Part 1
Eye in the Sky - July 2002 - Part 2
Eye in the Sky - July 2002 - Part 1
Eye in the Sky - June 2002 - Part 3
Eye in the Sky - June 2002 - Part 2
Eye in the Sky - June 2002 - Part 1
Eye in the Sky - May 2002
Eye in the Sky - April 2002 - Part 2
Eye in the Sky - April 2002 - Part 1
Eye in the Sky - March 2002
Eye in the Sky - 2001 and before