Soaring Road Trip
Flyable wind direction WSW (250)
1600 ft (750 AGL)
Glide to LZ 5:1
Location Chemung NY
FL wide open grassy moderate slope
H2 P2 with observer
To fly this site contact
A group flew at both a Rochester site (Bristol) and Southern tier site (Katydid). In morning it looked like may be blown out for PG and maybe calm down enough for hg by afternoon so not many commitment emails were scrolling. I knew Bill Selent was rolling all the way from Cleveland so I was committed to trying 'Somewhere'. I was on way to Bristol but decided to head to Katydid as wind speeds looked lighter. I coordinated with Bill and Kunal (from Syracuse) and we met at around 2pm. By this time all three Hangies were in the air - Dave K eventually turned downwind and had a nice little XC (20mi I heard). Ed and Bill stayed around ridge catching some thermals and had landed by the time we launched around 3pm.
Winds looked very doable when we got up to launch (surprisingly) so we set up and all three flew for only about half hour. we really got a late start for big and developed thermals so they were a bit broken up but we thought it'd still be enough for awhile. In hindsight we probably could have launched about an hour earlier or maybe 2.
We all three hiked up road for another run and had slightly longer flight (40min or so), mainly just scratching at the ridge.
Jim K. met us at LZ shortly after landing because his 4wheel differential was not engaging so he did not make it up to launch (after 5 by this time). with no other vehicles really able to make it back up Bill and I hiked back up for a third flight - Bill was gracious and drove my truck down while I had a quick sledder at around 8pm.
Very nice day- great pilots, great hiking, great conversation, great flying...what more could one ask for? (except maybe for some Helles style home brewed Beer (forgot to break it out- bring it next time Bill).
After a late start, I met up with Ed and we carpooled to Katydid meeting George there. When we got up top Bill was there setting up. I launched at 1:42and had a long slow climb in the blue until I was eventually able to tie into a street and make it to base at 7300'. I ran the street for a while, but had decided prior to launch to try to stay south of BGM airspace along Rt.17. This would also expedite a retrieve. Unfortunately it put me into a much bluer area going crosswind. This kind of worked for a while, but eventually, since I could see the airport ahead, I had no choice but to head more directly toward Rt. 17 in the blue. This resulted in me landing at Hiawatha Links golf course after just short of 2 hrs in the air for 52 km (32 miles). I landed well away from any golfers in the rough between holes 8 and 2, but yelled "Fore" on final as a courtesy.
Looking later at my track on XContest, it's clear that it would have been much easier to go to the north of BGM as the drift and better clouds were both going that way. Being unfamiliar with the area, it would have been helpful to have set up a phone or vario with some mapping functions. I'll have to do that sometime.
Ed picked me up on his return from Katydid, so retrieve was a cinch. Thanks Ed! Ed told me he and Bill flew and that he had reached 3300' and tried to push upwind but didn't meet anything and ended up landing. Not sure about the airtime. George didn't fly. Two PG's had arrived later (Matt from Buffalo and a friend from Ohio) but I'm not sure when or if they flew. Maybe they could post about how it went for them?
Last week we attempted Katydid in NY. It was pretty rowdy, and strong uptop. A couple of us did short flights and found out, others decided against flying after seeing the results. Spring thermals and birds showing us the way to do it. Katydid is a very nice site. My first flight there ever, so there was a bit of pucker factor about the thought of not making the lz. It is about a 5:1 glide, but with strong wind...a little bit of an unknown but there were worse lz options if the normal one wasn't reachable. Made this video to draw some attention to stir new potential pilots out there. If you know anyone that may be interested in the sport, please share it with them. There is info in there about getting trained up to fly with us. Rochester Area Flyers club is doing a spring training again this year. Hope you enjoy! The video...