about this flying site on the Sunshine coast in Queensland many times, and I’ve
always wanted to fly the sand dunes at the beach. When Zhenya mentioned she and Andrey wanted to
go there after the competition in Forbes I was super happy to join the team. We
met up in Sydney and drove around 12 hours to Gold Coast to pick up a couple of
Malibus at Ollie’s place, and then spent the night at Kirsten’s house who very
generously had offered us a place for the night.
The next day we headed through the rain for the 3 hours drive to Rainbow Beach, it was flyable when we arrived, and we got a nice afternoon of flying over the Carlo Sandblow. We set up some cameras on the gliders, and also took some good pictures from the ground.
following day Kirsten and Marcin had joined us, and we hoped to fly the whole
day. We carried gliders up again, it’s a 500m walk on a forest track, but we got
stuck in rain the whole day and had to pack up when the sunset came.
day we carried up again, but the rain stopped the early flying, so we had lunch
and went back up to fly when it cleared up a little. We got great conditions
again, wish we got better light for photos, but some were great despite losing
the good light.
Beach is not really a traditional sand dune, but a sandblow in the ridge a
hundred meters or so over the beach and sea. It’s however a great flying site with
awesome toplanding and lowpass potential.
of pictures and videos by Zhenya, Andrey, Kirsten and me.
When we first came to Forbes and looked at the forecast, it did not look very promising at all, so I’m happy we got 4 out of 8 competition days. The training day was good, and the weather was ofcourse perfect for a comp day the day after the comp ended, with almost no winds and high cloudbase.
My flights are on flightlog.org and XContest, I got around 13 hours and nearly 500km open distance from the competiton, making the top 7 in the world XContest for HG at the time of writing :-)
Now I am in Sydney after delivering Olav and Crystal at the airport for their flights home, while I will stay a bit longer in Australia. The plan is to go to Rainbow beach to fly the dunes, then I will head back down to Lake Keepit and fly Sailplanes for the last week.
The last day of the comp, we got windy and blue conditions with forecasted weak lift. I needed two tows to get away, and flew the task alone most of the flight. It was a very quick 95 km flight with a good tailwind.
I got to goal with an OK time, I lost 8 minutes at the start gate due to retow, and ended up at 9. place in the total results for the comp. Quite happy with that result after no comp flying for a long time.
Windy and hot conditions, day cancelled, not safe at all. Massive duststorm came through last night. Here’s how the street outside after dinner was, the photo does not show the 40knot gusts and 43 degrees heat at 21:30… It was not a pleasant place to be outside.
Made goal, but it was slow going. Had some problems with the harness before takeoff and had to get off the dolly twice before I fixed it. Not very nice to struggle with stuff like that in 40+ degrees.
After a rowdy tow up I met up with a few other pilots and we had a good thermal or two before taking the start gate from cloudbase. I found out that my VG cleat did not lock the VG rope with any tension, I tried to clean it out from sand and dust, but no go. It was hard to fly the task with almost no VG, but I made it in the end.
We flew a 145km task, crosswind to the south, turning north crosswind to just east of Forbes, and headwind to goal at Bogan gate. Conditions were good, with 3000m cloudbase and some strong lifts here and there.
I was back in the towing order since I did not place well in task 1, and I took the first startgate 5-6 minutes late. I cought up with the main gaggle around the first turnpoint and had an OK run from there to goal. The final glide was into headwind and I nearly misjudged it, starting at 1:7 25km out I just made it over the trees into the goal cylinder to 6. place. Atilla won the day, Olav in 4. place.