Xc Title
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Turnpoint Flight on a Paraglider
Niviuk Icepeak X-One
26th June 2024
4hrs 24mins
Golden Ball
51.37303, -1.81745
51.37190, -1.81955
52.10490, -1.79727
52.28532, -1.95935
52.27203, -1.99370
52.39057, -2.09078
52.38950, -2.09183
Distances and Score
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Leg 2
Leg 3
Leg 4
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Flight map

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Duration 0:00   Takeoff Distance 0
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Track color
No data
Track data
Time: No data
Height: metres
Climb: m/sec
Speed: km/h
Distance: km

Climb and Speed averaged over 4 second intervals.

These values may be lower than those shown by a flight instrument, which has access to continuous raw data.

Red values indicate suspect data, because the tracklog contains invalid points.

Metric units are used for all chart data, except for Height which is shown in feet.

Height   -   GPS data
Maximum Height
5692 ft
Lowest Save
1060 ft
Takeoff Height
833 ft
Landing Height
528 ft
Total Ascent 33819 ft
Height Gain
Above Takeoff 4859 ft
Maximum 4879 ft
Low Point
814 ft
High Point
as Maximum Height
5692 ft
Climb   -   Pressure data
Maximum Climb
4.8 m/s
Minimum Climb
-3.8 m/s
Maximum Speed
64.8 km/h
Average Speed
around course
27.7 km/h
Average Speed
over track length
43.9 km/h
Flight Duration 4hrs 26mins
Track Points 15884
Recording Interval 1 secs
Statistics Interval 4 secs
Track Length 194.6 km
Invalid Positions
[< 1%]
Flight instrument
Type Flyskyhy
Model 8.2.3
Firmware 8.2.3

Climb and Speed averaged over 4 second intervals.

These values may be lower than those shown by a flight instrument, which has access to continuous raw data.

Red values indicate suspect data, because the tracklog contains invalid points.

Average Speed around course is measured from Start to Finish points.

Track Length is the cumulative distance between track points from Takeoff to Landing.

You can change the default units displayed - see the Options page.

Bell End!

We had been back and forth as to whether it would be a triangle day or a downwinder and in our usual fashion Kirsty and I said good night by clarifying "Make a decision in the morning". Morning came and the decision had been made for us, the forecast had changed it was certainly not looking like a triangle would be doable. So that made the decision easy.

I set goal at Crewe as we had flown there before from Golden Ball, and it's 200km with the wind forecast to be with us most of the way. I knew a few others would be out but myself, Kirsty and Tom had arranged to meet at the car park and that we did, along with Pete D. We had our usual cuddles and confirmation of forecasts being useless as we stood looking at what seemed to be a blue day (something to do with the iso thermal layer I believe), but soon we set off for the top. As we approached the bottom gate we bumped into Rich Meek, Awesome, I thought, another good pilot for the gaggle. We shared some more cuddles and remarked on his lovely new Gin Race 5 harness and continued on our way up.

The wind seemed to be bang on launch and a nice 7mph (estimate) the sky still looked inverted but there were birds climbing, and generally we were pretty excited. We parted and started setting up, it was around 10.15am and I remarked how happy I was that we got there early, it's a nice relaxed set up and we can talk crap for a bit. Today's topic, the weather and how it was all going to come good in a minute.

During the set up I noticed my radio battery had gone flat, I must have knocked it on when I put it away last, damn… The radio chatter can be very helpful at keeping morale high on long flights and occasionally we even share useful tips. Not to fear though Rich M came up the hill and happened to have a spare in his bag… Day saved. (Honestly, a big relief)

All of a sudden the sky seemed to be working, cumulus had formed all around us and the puffs on the hill were now noticably thermic, we made the call to get in our kit and hopefully we wouldn't be subjected to hours of being sat wrapped up ready for an Himalayan ascent in 26° heat for long.

Tom C was keen, he likes to be off the hill early and he isn't afraid to punt first, he launched the Enzo straight into a thermal and climbed with a bird but by the time I had pulled my wing up the air was pretty flat and Tom now over the top of the hill, ah well… It's working now.

We sat gently simmering for a while and then we all had a go at once, I'm not sure we actual had any inclination that there was a climb, I think we just thought it would work. It didn't… Side and bottom landings a plenty… Perfect, the only thing more frustrating than sitting on a hill gently cooking is having to walk up it after side landing and fully roasting ones self. Once we were all primed and back in position and having leaked a few liters of sweat, we got back to our main past time. Parawaiting…

The hill had gone dead, no wind very few cycles and the birds must have been Spanish immigrants who had decided on an early siesta because they had vanished. A few attempts and side landings by some but we generally say on that hill for about another 40 mins to an hour and then at about midday (I've forgotten to note the time again, I can't be bothered to go and look) Tim P and another launched and the air just felt different so I went for it. Glider came up inflated and pressurized so there was definitely a breeze, I see Tim make a turn, I'm gone…

I flew along the ridge get a couple of solid beeps and feel my wing tug me skyward so I S turn back through once before pulling on the right break and locking into a lovely climb out. I was soon joined by others and a gaggle of around 5 or 6 of us formed. Unfortunately Kirsty and Rich M were not in the gaggle.

The sky didn't look brilliant downwind but it looked like it was working, I took the first climb to around 3700' where wit started to dribble out and then I decided I was going for it and I'm off I went. I head straight to Avebury as the sky looked beat and it was on course line, having just left a lovely solid climb of between 1.5 and 2ms I was sure this would be good but it was about a 0.3 and guess what… Yip, everyone had followed. We minced there for about 20 mins and barely climbed but then we squeezed a 1ms out of it and this was enough to get me high enough that I thought 'ok I'm going for it' I could see a cloud forming towards Royal wotton Bassett/ Swindon and went for it. Had a nice line for the glide and a few had followed, I got underneath and Boom… 2.5ms Yes… Tim P was with me so we climbed and the day was now under way.

The sky looked good downwind and was opening up a bit, there was lots of sun on the ground and it was just a case of pick the right line. This was my mistake. I flew to the East toward a gorgeous looking cloud and a few further downwind and I got a lovely climb at South cerney just as an airline jet took off from Fairford. I knew I was above the airspace by quite some way so I sat in my climb and took it to base, however, this out me right up against Brize… What a twat. The wind was blowing SW and at about 12 - 15 was drifting me straight at the airspace, the sky looked good all around but now id have to cross wind.

I continued flying under the great street of clouds to the NE and the line was perfect, lift a plenty, jovial kites coming to encourage me in my efforts but I was really Easy now and knew this would be a problem as I got near Birmingham, id have to push west.

Kirsty and Tim got together but we're about 10km west of me and although I could hear their chatter on the radio, it was pretty useless info as I was ahead by a few km and to the East, I have to get West.

At Cheltenham o make the decision that the sky is good enough and I commit to start pushing West, the sky was working and a few good climbs had me thinking this was going to be easy. Base now at 5500' and me sat there, I push west hard. At first it worked well but all of a sudden the sky looked a bit rubbish, there were plenty of CU around but lots of shade on the ground and it was markedly trickier all of a sudden. I kept pushing on and making, now slow, progress.

I got to Redditch low from pushing West and Tim came on the radio to inform Kirsty he could see a glider climbing 10km to their east, I radioed back that it was me and that I was getting nailed cross winding in the 12kmh pure S or SW wind but I was in a climb and before I knew it was back over 4.5k. I set up to push slightly west of track as this would make the avoidance of Birmingham airspace much easier but the sky was so much better to the East and I never had any really good looking things to go for. Pushing forward I watched every whisp as it formed or dissipated and jumping between them I managed to stay high for a bit longer but as I approached Stourbridge both the wind and the clouds were trying to lure me east and into that 2500' bit of Birmingham airspace, shit… I have to push straight N and just hope something works…

Unfortunately, it didn't a long uneventful glide saw me punting on the smoke from a fire and the sun on a wooded hill but neither rewarded my efforts and instead I flew a path straight to my landing field. A lovely green field next to a big garage on a main road, perfect. Refreshment, maybe even a snickers for my effort and hopefully an easy retrieve.

Once landed I took the obligatory selfie, packed up and skipped my way to the garage having now won the internal battle of guilt and decided I'm having a magnum. Taking my life into my hands I crossed the busy dial carriage way and run straight to the forecourt. Wait a minute… Those are bollards, why are the fridges outside? Why are the pumps all closed off? Agggghhhhhhh the garage is having a refurb… It's at this point Andrew Craig responds to my pin on telegram and alerts me to the fact that I have rather appropriately landed in Bell End…

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