21 Jun 10

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BÍte-Noire


Comfy seats

Jorg, local pundit, offered some sound medical advice for those suffering from an upper-leg hematoma: keep the leg in an elevated position, at an altitude of 3000m.

I did learn that while the front seat of the Duo is indeed comfortable, it is surpassed by the executive luxury of the LS6 - a fine selling point in its favour and one that I must remember in my latest quest for an ASG29. 


Mercantour

And so to today's events. The forecast was for a good'un. North-westerly winds, stronger to the west, and good thermals to the east as far as the Mercantour, where storms were predicted. But let me tell you first about my psychological 'moment' at the launch point. We had two tugs, the Rallye YU and the Robin BH, both fine examples of the aerotowing genre. I was next to go; YU landed and taxied back along the runway, past me and off to the fuel pump. Then BH landed, taxied back past me and off to the fuel pump. I heard the distant rumble of a third tug engine. Regular visitors to this site will recall that Rallye TU was the subject of a most amusing tow-failure incident last year, so seeing it appear once more at the other end of the rope gave me pause for thought.     
This time, Alex was the tuggie and he knows what he is doing. TU is still underpowered, but we did make it to the Gache in one piece. I quickly found a thermal at the summit and flew direct to the Vaumuse and Authon. Auribeau worked in a negative sense, as one would expect with a northerly, and I was soon down on the lower reaches of la Bigue, which did give enough thermals to get me to the Coupe and the parcours proper.    


Cloud-capped Trois Eveches


Serremontdenier

The clouds were only just above the peaks, but the cumulus was working along the entire length of the parcours to 8500ft or so. I ventured as far as the Dormillouse and decided against flying further north.

I had a cracking run back down the parcours, through patches of drizzle and strong climbs, to the lac Sainte Croix. Conditions looked good to the south so I continued towards Vinon, and then headed back to the Lure and the Rosans valley, searching for wave, although this time without success.

Finally I decided to explore local evening thermals, sharing climbs with a Duo over Jouere, Grande Gautiere and Oratoire. And that was that - not the greatest day in terms of distance and achievements, but certainly the best day of our stay so far. 

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