2013 Jul 13 – c

Idaho? Part 3

By Peter Kelly

This is a continuation of the story.

At 12:49 PM, on Friday 26 July 2013, I was above the hills at the south end of the Trinity Alps looking northward at my next goal!

1249-cu at the north end of thiese alps

and only 15 minutes later (at 13:04) I was I established on top of the hills, even if it was only at 8,500 feet.  The scenery was spectacular.

1304-see you


 1305-great photo ops here in the Trinity Alps - even at 9000 ft

And a bit over 45 minutes later, I was approaching Mt Shasta.  This is the view from 13,450 feet

1349-cockpit-showing 13450

Holding the camera outside and above the canopy provides a better view.

1349-view from above

Orienting our position on the map, you can see we are going to cross over I-5 at the south end of the Yreaka-Shasta Valley in Northern California.

1349-see you

Looking behind us, you can see the nice lift that carried us up to over 13,000 feet.  I say “us” referring to you and me, as I was flying a single place glider, but constantly snapping photos for you, so you could come along for the ride.

1349-view to the rear

Ten minutes later we are passing the volcano

1358-passing the Mt Shasta volcano on the downwind-north side

Couldn’t help my self – a mug shot, with Shasta behind the wing.

1400-mug shot with Mt Shas in the background

The time is 13:38 the wind is from the SE at 11 kts and although my altitude is nearly 11,000 I need to move eastward – there will be some good lift one I get out of the wind shadow of this Volcano.

1358-see you

Ten minutes later (now 14:08)  I am well clear of Mt Shasta and will have a fast and easy ride for the next 10 or 15 miles below these clouds.

1408-looking east towards Medicine Lake

Thirty five minutes later I reach my first decision point.  The time is 2:45 PM and it is time to select a turning point for this adventure. I certainly am not going to make it to anywhere close to the Idaho border, but maybe I could turn the three corner border of California, Oregon and Nevada.  I relay my intentions to my Buddy Jim-1B who is about 125 miles to the west near Hyampom Airport.  A pilot from Siskiyou chimes in and sarcastically asks if I have the engine spark plugs around my neck- so as to prevent me from using the engine to get home.  Little did that pilot know, but I did not have an operative engine to help me to get home.

Here is a Google map showing the geography.   The orange line would have been my route, if I had the time and good soaring conditions to go to the Idaho border, but that wasn’t going to happen today!   My new proposed route is now the green line, however the sky to the south and south east of my position has become very ugly – as represented by the magenta wiggly lines. In just a few minutes, that plan too will be revised.

1444-decision point1-annotated

The more I looked to the east and then back to the south, the more I knew I didn’t want to go any further eastbound.

I could see a nice cu ahead.  I’ll climb there and make a decision as to which way to proceed.

Here is my position as I made the final decision to start finding a path towards home.

1500-see you

In the cockpit, things looked OK, with plenty of altitude and lots of landing options currently available.

1500-plenty of altitude-14850

You’ll have to agree – it just didn’t look good to the south.

1520-rain and clouds to the south

I snapped a bunch of photos of this mess.

My plan was to show you more photos, and offer more discussion and info on the flight log, but I close this out here.  I was forced down by the weather, and rather than land, I terminated the glider flight as I approached Mt Lassen.  I used the motor to reach some nearby lift.  Once again able to climb, I secured the engine, passed Mt Lassen and headed towards Chester.  I made it back to Williams in a long boring glide of over 70 miles from the northeast, from high on the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Chapter One = http://www.valleysoaring.net/?page_id=2104

Chapter Two =  http://www.valleysoaring.net/?page_id=2180

Chapter Three = http://www.valleysoaring.net/?page_id=2240

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