Archive for June, 2008

Video from Eggekollen yesterday.

Monday, June 30th, 2008

A short video of Rolf H. launching yesterday at Eggekollen. The launch was windy and turbulent with strong thermals coming in over the ridge, but it provided good lift once in the air.

Nice soaring at Eggekollen, pre-Worlds in Laragne

Sunday, June 29th, 2008

Finally a nice hang glider flight for me, it has been a while now. The original plan was to participate in the pre-Worlds in Laragne now but because of a couple of accidents and little flying I chose to withdraw. So instead I get some local flying here in Norway at Eggekollen. I must admit that I would have preferred Laragne over Eggekollen, but that is just the way it is. Eggekollen provide almost certain soaring if it is sea breeze or winds from the south but it is not that much used by hangglider pliots as the equipment need to be carried for at least 20 minutes to get to the lauch. In addition, the airspace restricts us to 1370 masl.

It was quite a lot of wind today and this combined with thermals made the lauch turbulent, but once in the air it was nice and smooth. I enjoyed the nice conditions for 1 hour 30 minutes before heading for the LZ.

View from Egge towards the Oslo fjord. Nice clouds but the wind made the thermals difficult to catch and they drifted a lot. More pictures from the day HERE.

The two pilots from Norway in the competition in Laragne reports of hot weather and good flying but still cancelled or stoped tasks. The report home several times a day at our national team blog hosted by VG.no, the largest newspaper in Norway. Read the blog HERE (in Norwegian).

Fatal sailplane accident at Starmoen, Norway

Friday, June 27th, 2008

Again more bad news about a fellow pilot. This time a fatal sailplane accident at the national sailplane centre at Starmoen. The accident happened during a winch launch, and the glider went down from about 20 metres according to the reports from the newspapers, but what caused the accident is still not clear.

Windy day at Notodden

Saturday, June 21st, 2008

As I woke up this morning my knee felt pretty good (probably due to massive doses of steriods and Voltaren), and I decided to drive the 1 1/2 hour to Notodden to see if I could get a flight. The forecast predicted a lot of wind, and the two seaters in the club were quite booked with passenger flights, but as hang gliding was out of the question because of knee + wind and due to bad weather on Sunday, I thought I should try to get a flight as this seemed like the only possibility this weekend.

As expected it was not conditions for me to fly solo and the two seaters were quite bussy, but in the end I got a flight with my “old” hang glider buddy, now pure sailplane pilot, Kenneth Karlsen. We got a nice 1 hour 23 minutes flight in slow conditions taking the wind (where were the waves?) and clouds in consideration.


Cloud base at about 2200 masl. Vikersund and Tyrifjorden up along the wing seen from Notodden.

Bad knee, flying plans, and Moyes Malibu

Friday, June 20th, 2008

As usual not much going on lately. Bad weather and some work. Still, the main problem right now is that I have got an inflamation in my knee for the fourth time in six months. I have been to the doctor and gotten an appointment for a MR examination, followed up by a visit to reumatologist to see if the problem can be identified. In the mean time I am worried about my flying this summer. A bad knee is not something you would have launching a hang glider.

Weekend flying plans. Lots of wind and possibly rain on Sunday = sailplane, at least on Saturday. This goes better with my knee as well. Still, the knee has to improve a little before the morning to be able both to drive and fly.

Moyes launches a floater glider!
Moyes introduces the Malibu. Read more about the glider at Moyes’ website. The glider looks good and I would love to test fly one. I am probably going to buy me a floater glider soon and with the introduction of the Malibu, I have added this to my shortlist of potential gliders to buy, the other two being Wills Wing Falcon 3 and Airborne Fun.


Photo and copyright by Moyes.

Bad news from the European Championship in Greifenburg

Monday, June 16th, 2008

The organiser reports of a fatal accident during the competition Sunday. A short statement from the organiser can be read HERE.

Vågå weekend – Sunday

Sunday, June 8th, 2008

Strong W winds, cirrus (high clouds), and strange conditions. It was not flyable in Vågå so a bunch went to Heidalen – Espesætra hoping for better conditions here. This is a S-SW launch but is somewhat sheltered from strong winds and because of thermals and local conditions works on most wind directions. I had developed a cold during the night and did not feel too good. In addition, I did not believe too much in the day and chose not to fly. A few pilots did launch from Heidalen and reported about though conditions. Not a perfect weekend but nice company with other pilots in Vågå, and at least I got home early.

It is one thing I has irritated me for a long time! I often drive past Lillehammer on my way to fly in Gudbrandsdalen and Vågå. Lillehammer is about 2 hours 30 minutes drive from my home and roughly half way to Vågå. So it is nice to have a short stop here, get some coffee, fuel, and sometimes something to eat. And it is the latter that irritates me greatly. Near the main road and gas station it is a McDonald’s, and this is the worst f… McDonald’s I have ever had the misfortune to visit, and I have tried a few around Norway and Europe. I am not to fond of McDonald’s and this kind of food, but sometimes it is convenient because it is quick and inexpensive, and presumably no worse quality or less healthy than the rest of the food you can buy in by the road cafeterias – maybe even the opposite. But back to McDonald’s Lillehammer. This is the worst McDonald’s. I have ever visited (I know I have already said this, I just want to emphasis the point). It is definitely the slowest, it only take slightly more than a couple of visitors to make you wait for at least 10 minutes. If it is few guests, they never have any burgers or anything else ready so you have to wait 2 minutes (meaning at least 10 minutes) to get our food. And worst of all, the burgers look trashed, the fries are either cold, over fried, too salty, of a combination of these things. It is incredible that it is possible to make such a mess out of a tested and proven concept. I have no other explanation than that they want to make things bad. So my advise is very clear. Stay away from McDonald’s Lillehammer! I once again tried to buy a burger from them today and gave up – and this was my last visit ever to this disfunctional “restaurant”.

As I come from Lillehammer I am so lucky to have family here and can visit them, and often do, for a cup of coffee and some food if needed.

Vågå weekend again – report Saturday

Saturday, June 7th, 2008

The forecast for Vågå this weekend looked very good and as reports of +3700 masl came in Friday afternoon I was had big expectations for Saturday. We expected late conditions and conditions were slow as we arrived at the launch at 1130, but then the conditions never improved before it started to overdevelop. From 1300 we had rain showers and crosswind. At about 1445 we had a window where it was possible to launch and fly. I managed to stay up about 20 minutes in marginal conditions, but soon after I landed the wind picked up and it started to lift all over the place. Still, most chose to land as it was lots of rain around and it overdeveloped. So, all in all not the day we expected and hoped for. And now the forecast for Sunday looks quite bad with strong W winds.

Glider vs wingsuit

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

Some people seem to have more fun than others.

Source: The video was first posted on the OzReport.

First Vågå weekend of the year

Sunday, June 1st, 2008

This weekend the national hang glider and paraglider centre in Vågå opened for the season, and as the forecast looked half way promising I decided to drive the + 4 hours to Vågå hoping for good flying conditions. I arrived at Vågå 2330 Friday evening, just in time for a couple of beers. Saturday the forecast predicted relatively strong wind so we drove up to the launch early. At 1130 launch conditions were good, but as I decided to start by 1205 the wind had increased in addition to be cross from the left (SE). So I gave up launching the Falcon 2 170 as this is a relatively slow glider and also not that good launching in a lot of wind. Later Johnny N. and Vegar H. launched with topless gliders, but hit waves and had a pretty rough flight. The wind then picked up even further to 16 mps and the rest of the pilots gave up and went down hoping for better conditions in the evening. In the evening the wind suddenly calmed down so we went up for an evening sled ride. As we arrived it was nearly 0-wind, so I launched as fast as possible fearing tailwind, and got a sled ride down to the landing. In the end about half the pilots got stuck in tailwind and were not able to start.


Johnny N. landing his Airborne C4 Saturday evening.

Sunday looked a little better than Saturday in terms of wind, but today the wind was from W. We went up quite early again, and I rigged the glider as fast as possible to get out before the wind picked up. As I was ready to launch the wind had increased and the W component was dominating, meaning crosswind from the right on launch. But as I was about to launch I noticed that the wind had increased down in the valley; the paragliders had 0 speed in the headwind and the Lake Vågåvatn showed clear signs of lots of wind. I launched in a calm period with good headwind, and flew into relatively good lift but was more preoccupied with getting down to the landing while the wind was manageable than to soar. I pulled through most of the lift and landed after only 16 minutes. After I launched only two hang gliders more was able to launch before the rest of them gave up. So I probably got the most out of the day, and the weekend.

Other news.
Steinar and Terje S. from the Oslo Area Hang Glider Club have taken the week off to fly. Daily reports at Loffdesperados.no (in Norwegian).