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Days worthy of blog entries...

Posted by SynTaks, 14 February 2010 · 354 views

Days worthy of blog entries...

There are some days that are just run of the mill... some you want to cuss at the wind more than anything else.... and others you can't stop thinking about.

Wednesday the 10th found us out in Palmer shopping around the typical places to fly, which there are a multitude of out there, but it is a matter of what is accessible. Made one trip around the fairgrounds and the prime location hadn't even had a path plowed through it. Revert to selection #2 where there is a bit more running room and split between currently plowed [ice sheet] and previously plowed. The north wind averaged 10mph easily, and on skiis I only sank into the snow about 2-3". Set up the Blast 2-4 and got a taste for wanting more. Tak got a few good runs in on his sled on the ice sheet. About the time the wind started picking up to around 15, we were on to the EXP and testing out a set of "Fly Lights" since its pretty dark out there and a lack of street lights.

Friday the 12th provided once again no wind in town, so back to Palmer it was. Really, whenever we start out somewhere, there is daylight at some point.... A bit more of a breeze, at 10-15 for the evening. With a Blast 2-4 on not much of a snowpack, that 10-15 can get you going pretttty well. Some things you wish you could take pictures of, but theres no way in this case, because it was pitch black out at around 8pm, well out of headlight view, just the stars behind the black and white kite that you're hanging on to for the ride. I was having a great time in the dark, but Tak didn't enjoy sledding too much out on the snow when its easy to loose track of the kite.

Saturday the 11th was mediocre here in town, but a consistent 5 gusting to 10 at the nearest weather station proved to be enough for entertainment. Put the Blast together and was fully expecting to get little to no movement out of it considering a friends sled was arguing whether it would fly with a tail or not. A light breeze works well on the plowed parking lot, giving me some practice in technique that someday might be useful. Virgin snowpack on the soccer field was beckoning, and overall is about 18" deep. On ski's that put me sinking about 6", or digging in about a foot if I wasn't paying attention. Unfortunately in the snowpack means I can't get a good return on my trek, since its harder to get a sideways path going. Tak got quite a bit of enjoyment out of tube tails on the Shockwave.

Today had about the same wind as yesterday, but was definitely better earlier in the afternoon. Being a church and Sunday, that relegated me to the path I had started work on yesterday since the plowed lot is actually for overflow parking. Luckily we talked the plow guys into not graveling it so I can escape with a few less gouges in my skis. Closest weather station put the wind at 6 gusting to 12 for most of the time we were out. Its been quite warm also in the low 30's, warm enough to go for light layers but cold enough to keep the snow from sticking to the skis like mud. Made some new paths across the field and started building up a bit of a mole hill at the end. The first time I hit the mole hill, didn't quite have the kite high enough and ended up sitting in the snow. Somehow Tak got ahold of one of the local city cops who usually use the back parking lot to write their reports since its quiet, and persuaded him to get out the radar gun. Of course starting out was around 2-4mph just because the wind was being rather gusty due to an incoming storm fighting with the sun. I had fully expected somewhere around 10, but one of those gusts worked out to 18mph max. I guess that goes along with the "hang on for the ride" part. After the parking lot cleared out, the last good wind was around 10mph and I got a few good runs in on the hardpack. It was somewhere between the point where you can get a good carved line going sideways [even recover a bit of ground] and the Blast just dragging me into the wind 5' at a time.

Videos from 2/12/2010:


^I look like a midget next to this thing...


^This is what happens when Tak says "fly the Blast for a minute so I can film it"

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