Dylan goes XC
The XC fever continued this weekend. Pilots were hoping for the right conditions to get high and head out. Hiren had stayed back from the previous weekend. Monday he flew to Govitri (the village before Native Place) and Tuesday he came all the way in and landed near Native Place. I traveled up to Kamshet with my 22 year old nephew Dylan on Friday. Dylan had XC on his mind and was hoping to head downwind towards Karla if he got the chance.
We met Ravi and Sandip at Rangoli by 9.30 am and drove to Tower Hill with them. The conditions were good in the morning and the prediction was that the wind would die out / turn north by late afternoon. We had nice flights in the late morning and headed out to Native Place for lunch.
Saturday saw many pilots on the hill. The conditions were variable. It was easy to spot the cycles with gliders gaining height and spreading out only to be flocking back at the ridge 10 minutes later. I waited too long and finally did a nil wind takeoff and a top to bottom flight.
Sunday was an amazing day. We all got pretty high. Dylan got up to 1500 and headed out as planned. He flew downwind and landed at Lonavala about 10 km as the crow flies. Some of us went to retrieve him and when he met he said with a big grin “I left the dog to die’ A phrase we picked up from Jocky Sanderson.
Dylan has been flying since the age of 15. He has flown 45 km XC in Bir but never left the hill at the home sites in Kamshet. During the last weekend’s thermalling and XC course he missed 2 opportunities to fly out with Chris and Jocky and was determined to leave the hill this weekend and he did.
We are proud of you Dylan
Peace Bliss & Happy Landings
Astrid & Sanjay Rao