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FlyBC "Site of the Day" - April 2002 Archives

Go to the FlyBC Weather Page to predict the weather. Send us your flight reports here!

news What's new around the Vancouver Flying scene.

FlyBC's Rookie of the Year 2001 has been chosen and will be declared at the grand opening of Eagle Ranch on May 11-12!

Woodside WebCam

Date Site Forecast Precip. Winds Aloft
3000 ft.
Lapse Rate

May 1 Woodside sunny 0% POP 260° at 11 knots -2.5°/1000'
(good lapse rate)
Eagle Ranch Grand Opening has been planned for May 11-12, 2002.

FlyBC's Paragliding School is back bigger and better in 2002!, go to FlyBC's Eagle Ranch Page for more aerial shots taken by Colleen on Sunday Feb 10, 2002.

April 30 Sumas, may be good for an XC flight to Woodside sunny 0% POP 020° at 11 knots -2.5°/1000'
(good lapse rate)
Sumas/Woodside Report - We got out to Woodside to find a north east wind. Not wanting to waste a trip out to the valley, we decided to see if we could find our way up Sumas. After a few wrong turns and a helpful phone call, there we were on launch. Jack flew, and I navigated back down to the new LZ. Alan radioed over that he and his friend Charles had hiked up Woodside and were about to fly, since the winds had switched to West. Off to Woodside for us! We picked up Roman at the bottom and each got a sweet half hour flight. Charles offered to drive for us so back up we went. 3 flights for Jack, 2 for me. Sure beat packing! - Martina

Woodside Report - I flew from Edmonton on WestJet 82 past Woodside again and snapped these pictures to show how close they get to launch, someone was launching a turquoise glider at 6:00 pm, Martina?? - Jim

Bear Mountain/Harrison Beach

North Side of Agassiz Mountain

Woodside Launch from the north

Paramotoring Report - almost flew! - Ian J

April 29 Bridal sunny 0% POP 310° at 14 knots -2.5°/1000'
(good lapse rate)
No pireps but I suspect it was good - Jim (from Edmonton)

April 28 Woodside for the Welcome Back Fly In sunny, high 17° 0% POP 270° at 9 knots -3.0°/1000'
(excellent lapse rate)
Woodside Report - We towed until noon, the winch is working better than planned. Good flying until about 3:00 pm when it got strong, thermals were popping off green fields! Lots of frontals on PGs at speed. So everyone headed to Bridal.

Lil Nick Report - Chris Huxley and Alex Raymont flew from Lil Nick past Woodside, I heard Chris was on the ground in Harrison. Carl landed on Squakum Beach, don't know where Ivan landed. Alex Raymont made it to Hope! Great flights, Guys!

Bridal Report - lots of gliders in the air at 4:00 pm, looked bumpy near launch. Chris Muller thrilled the crowd with SATs and other stunts. Beware of where you park your vehicle at Bridal, it could be hit by unskilled PG operators as witnessed today, one pilots hauled away in ambulance with suspected leg fracture after smacking into Noel's roof rack (ouch). If you have any doubts about a successful landing at the Driving Range land in the swamp! - Jim

April 27 Woodside for the Welcome Back Fly In sunny 0% POP 320° at 10 knots -2.5°/1000'
(good lapse rate)
Woodside Report - very windy until 3:30 pm, but the hangies got off earlier and Master Dan Keen made it to Hope. Congrats on the Level 5 award!

The only PGer that got high was Alex Raymont, others had bumpy turbulent sled rides and a few interesting landings. A new student got 4 tows and is ready to fly Woodside soon.

Bridal Report - Ihor and Rob S flew Bridal and we heard they got high.

April 26 Whidbey rain possible 60% POP 030° at 12 knots -2.8°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Whidbey Report - looks like a bad call, Woodside was flyable most of the day and it didn't rain until very late. CUs a popping when the sun came out!

April 25 Woodside, possibly Bridal sunny periods 20% POP light and variable, then 280° at 10 knots later -3.1°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate ,yahoo)
Woodside Report - great flying at Woodside today, pilots launching at 1:00 pm got hammered for about an hour and then it got very smooth with big thermals (idiot lift). I got concerned when it was reported that Chilliwack was reporting gusts to 18 knots and headed out and arrived over Eagle Ranch with 1000 meters AGL, smooth 1 m/s up all the way out. Very gusty on the ground, with Allan D getting a frontal on final!. I logged 1.5 hours, max altitude was 1400 meters - Jim

Bridal Report - when it got windy lots of pilots headed to Bridal. Kevin A top-landed at Upper Launch and was still in the air around 6:00 pm. Some interesting top-landings at Lower Launch!

April 24 Bridal sunny, small craft warning on the coast so beware of surface winds 20% POP light and variable -2.8°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - lots of extended sledders, too milky to get sun on the slopes - Jim

April 23 Bridal later clearing 20% POP 270° at 18 knots -2.5°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - Rob S and I were up at Woodside Launch cleaning up for the big event planned this weekend, launch is much safer on the right side where some dead snags were removed and the sharpened stumps were removed.

As we were working Colleen decided she needed to get back to the Ranch to do some work so she flew off and climbed straight out to cloudbase (+8 m/s!) and headed out towards the Ranch LZ where she had to get over the Fraser to descend. She noted backing into the LZ from 400 meters straight down.

Dan Keen and Greg Beakmaster (sp?) showed up and required some wire assist to get off, same elevator ride to cloudbase but they headed out early as the impending gale force winds were whipping up the Harrison River. Rowdy descents for the Hgers into Bill Best's field - Jim

Woodside Web Cam 2.0 Update - a new cpu was installed with a faster modem and more disc space so the Woodside Web Cam should be more reliable, keep checking it. Version 3.0 should have a better focal length using a Sony Video Camera, testing in a few weeks.
April 22 Stay at Work Rain and locally windy 70% POP 310° at 26 knots -2.5°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - overflew Harrison Lake inbound from Toronto and it looked like someone might have been able to fly, but it sure got windy after 5:30 pm. The Air Canada 767 I was in landed very short and didn't even use the thrust reversers to stop (it was so windy at YVR!) - Jim

April 21 Woodside, perhaps Bridal later if it gets windy again Sunny. High 14. 30% POP 270° at 9 knots -2.5°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - rain and low cloudbase all day, rain in Bellingham from the morning on. The weatherman kept calling for "Sunny Breaks" but it never happened.

Savona Report -We went to Vernon to the wedding and on Sunday it was raining and cloudy, so went over to Savona, Norm flew off of lower launch and ended up in the toilet bowl he launched too early. I stayed down at the crash pad and did some kiting and watched my grandaughter. It was sunny and beautiful in Savona. Wish everyone was there - Bev

April 20 Lil Nick Sunny. High 15. 20% POP 290° at 10 knots -2.2°/1000'
(stable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - Colleen said that many pilots forgot to get upwind of a landing field before doing their approach and landed out, we are going to enforce an outlanding fee if this happens any more. It was windy but not too windy to make it to the Ranch - Jim

Lil Nick Report - there was a log over the road up to launch so the work party wasn't too successful. Ivan and Mark were the only ones to fly, Ivan says it was very strong and he had to pull ears and spiral down to land. Two bags of garbage collected, some brush cleared.

April 19 Woodside Sunny. High 18. 0% POP 290° at 11 knots -3.0°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - Lots of flights today at Woodside and Bridal. It was very windy at Woodside with turbulence reported in all LZs. Perhaps Bill Best's field would be better in strong SW wind? Bridal was reported to have excellent launch conditions with strong inflow winds at the Driving Range - Jim

Grouse Report - The windtalker is working again. I was up there for a flight yesterday and saw that the spinner has all three cups in it now. I also called it and it was reporting something other than zero. I had a nice one hour flight yesterday but it was a bit lonely up there all by myself. This is a great time of year to fly Grouse - where is everyone? - Russ

Whidbey Report - Lawrence Wallman and I had the place to ourselves. The wind was blowing in a perfect 12mph from the west. We got to fly from 6:30pm PDT to when I finally landed after watching the sun set at 8pm. We had a hawk and an eagle for company most of the time. One or the other would be flying very close to use for long periods at a time. The flying was fairly effortless in the smooth air and you could watch the birds maneuver themselves by adjusting the feathers on their wings. The flying wasn't technical like at a thermal site but it was fun to be able to sit back and totally enjoy the view - Greg Wong

April 18 Woodside Sunny. High 15. 0% POP 310° at 13 knots -2.5°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - Ian J, Rob P and Alex R got in the air before it got too strong at launch and soared for about 3 hours! Alex got bored and flew over to Bridal (triangle from Woodside to Agassiz Mtn to Bridal) landing at the golf course. Others at launch never got off due to the strong winds - Jim (reporting from Toronto)

Woodside Hangie Report - Sky conditions: Broken cumulus at 5500' with a north flow. Martin and Mia are already in the air soaring above when I launch. Good lift at the south point but the lift drifts to the south. Lots of sink between the cycles. Neil Muir and I work a good one tip to tip and reach cloud base at 5300'. We head over the back and I'm first to arrive at Mt. Agissiz greeted with big sink from the northerly component. I bail after 2 passes and arrive at the long low ridge along hwy 9 before Mt Bear. I'm down to about 800ft and work anything I can stick a wing tip into. Finally catch something workable and take it up to over 4000' it drifting away from the mountians to the south and I entertain the idea of crossing the Fraser river to Laidlaw.

Neil and Greg Buckmaster bail on Mt Agissiz and head for my low save area. Leo on his first flight of the year finally gets high on Woodside and drifts it back to the gas station on hwy 7. He glides to the same low ridge along hwy 9. All 3 get back up, with some exploring Mt. Hicks. We all land in the same field behind the Sea Bird Cafe for an easy retrieve.

Its only 14km XC but it was fun enjoying the challenging conditions.First flight for Leo and he goes XC! - Dan Keen

April 17 Woodside Cloudy with sunny breaks. A few showers with risk of an afternoon thundershower. High 12. 20% POP light and variable -3.0°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - no problem getting to cloudbase today! It was 150 meters above launch, and recorded lift of 5.0 m/s (1000 ft/min). I launched first and scooted over to the cliffs to the north and was rocketed towards base in a few turns, then south to a blue hole over the road up to launch where I climbed above the clouds (still in the clear) as I watched Alan D and Mark F dance with the clouds below me.

Good day to test fly the UP Trango, very dynamic conditions yet no collapses. A few times I thought I went parachutal after manuevers but the recorded sink was also -5.0 m/s so it was most probably the huge transitions that I was feeling.

Roman and Rob S also flew, with Jack C and Kevin A launching later and still having great flights. Most logged 1-1.5 hr flights with landings in various LZs below Woodside. Spring flying at Woodside! - Jim

April 16 Whidbey chance of showers 40% POP 160° at 12 knots -3.0°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Whidbey Report - strong SE all day with a nice westery period around 5 pm until dark, no pireps but it looked good from the NOAA reports - Jim

April 15 Stay Home cloudy and windy 70% POP 260° at 14 knots -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Fraser Valley Report - more snow on the mountains, the fields are wet and the rain keeps coming down! UGH! When will Spring arrive?

Vernon Report - Saturday and Sunday sunny and warm, but too windy, even for HG. Monday got a 1.5 hour flight off Baldy after sitting through some periods of snow and hail on launch. Made all the tandem course participants jealous as they were busy in ground-handling school below me! - Nicole

April 14 Stay Home cloudy and windy 40% POP 240° at 24 knots -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Fraser Valley Report - Power lines down everywhere, high wind all day with tons of rain, good day to stay inside and paint - Jim

April 13 Savona sunny breaks 40% POP 210° at 8 knots -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Savona Report - too windy for PGs and no HGs around, it may have mellowed but we got bored and drove home - Jim

April 12 Savona mostly cloudy with sunny breaks 40% POP 210° at 18 knots, light and variable in Penticton -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Woodside Report - Rob S flew Woodside testing his repaired Booster in mild conditions, I test flew the new Trango in more moderate conditions earlier and it was bumpy with interesting windshear as I headed out to the Ranch - Jim

April 11 Whidbey Island few showers, mostly cloudy 40% POP 280° at 17 knots -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Whidbey Report - looked like soarable winds after 2:00 pm local time, no rain after noon, no pireps.

April 10 Woodside/Lil Nick few showers, mostly cloudy 40% POP 180° at 11 knots -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Woodside Report - Alan D, Mark F and Hugo flew Woodside in light punchy lift, some too small for three pilots according to Alan!

Norm bagged a sledder later in the day - Jim

April 9 Stay at Work Rain developing 80% POP 230° at 25 knots -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Woodside Report -Heavy Rain all day!

San Diego Report - Glen Taylor got back last night from a 5 day trip and logged 15 hours at Torrey Pines in strong lift, welcome back to the rain Glen.

April 8 Woodside A mix of sun and cloud. High 12. 20% POP light and varibale, westerly higher -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Woodside Report - a few pilots ventured out for later flights and as I looked up at the mountain I noticed a red glider "parked" along the ridge, it looked very windy and then it became apparent that this glider was indeed "parked", but "parked in a tree".

After a few radio calls it was determined that Rob S was okay and on the ground after having climbed down the tree to get some tools. By the time I drove up we had the RCMP, Search and Rescue and a few others on the radio talking to Rob.

Rob said he had a collapse that cascaded into an uncontrollable mess so he tossed his reserve and floated into the trees.

The remaining pilots that flew after Rob S, had brilliant flights, enough lift to cross the Fraser and back to the mountain, all landing around 6:00 pm at Eagle Ranch. By then Rob's glider was down and checked over, one small tear (repairable) and one reserve line cut to extract it.

Springtime at Woodside! - Jim

April 7 Woodside A mix of sun and cloud. A few morning showers. Locally windy. High 12. 20% POP 270° at 10 knots -3.0°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - some said it wasn't gonna happen! But a few ventured out and had excellent flights. 1 sailplane, 10 HGers and 24 PGers all flew from 2:00 pm to 5:30 pm, I logged 3+ hours, after initially heading out to land at Eagle Ranch at the 1 hr mark (frozen), but I overflew the Ranch at 2500 feet with Rob S and we flew back to the mountain again.

The last part of the flight was spent over the microwave towers with Nicolay trying to head north but the thermals weren't happening on the North side. I gave up on top-landing after I heard Ian J was giving Colleen a ride up to get the Suburban, and marvelled at Rob P's persistence as he finally top-landed to drive down (it was strong!).

smooth air, no penetration problems, all around good ridge conditions for Hangs and Bags!- Jim

April 6 Stay Home rain starting in the PM 100% POP 240° at 15 knots -3.0°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Sorry we did not update the Site of the Day page, it looked too depressing!

April 5 Woodside sunny with cloudy periods, rain starting in the PM 50% POP 240° at 15 knots -3.0°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)

APCO Presta (all new DHV 1-2 glider) - with closed valve system new for 2002! New Presta 2002 Pictures on the January 2002 Site of the Day archives page.

April 4 Woodside sunny with cloudy periods 30% POP 240° at 8 knots -2.5°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - lots of pilots flying Woodside in scratchy conditions, Ian J claimed 1 hour getting no more than 100 meters over launch. I got out late and fired up the paramotor and took off as Ian landed and flew up to launch using some thermals to get me up fast.

As I arrived at launch Kevin A was soaring by the south knob. I climbed out over launch and headed North over Harrison River and got lift all the way around Woodside Mtn., to view the logging on the north side before heading south over the Prison at 3500 feet.

I then flew directly over the back of Woodside to fly over launch to see if anyone was still flying, but just some tourists were there.

I then flew out to Eagle Ranch and cut the motor at about 2500 feet to descend in quiet mode. Still took a long time to land as it was quite buoyant - Jim

Woodside Report #2 -I couldn't take the gloating anymore. Ian J drove me to commit hookey so I could escape to Woodside April 4. He was right - it WAS the sweetest lift. 3 hours airtime, no whacks, max elevation 1100m up at the microwave. Jim was the last pilot in the air but he cheated :) - Ian Mitchell
April 3 Woodside sunny with cloudy periods 0% POP light and variable, westerly at 6000 feet -2.0°/1000'
(standard lapse rate)
Woodside Gloat Report #1: This is for the outa' towners .......... We had the sweeeeeetest lift at Woodside today. Not to gloat or anything - Ian J

Woodside Gloat Report #2: I had my first flight of the year and sky-ed Norm out. But Norm had a great flight after I whimpered out to the Eagle Ranch LZ, still high enough to circle the field many times over the barn - Bev

WestJet Flight Report: as an outa' towner yesterday I enjoyed a WestJet flight from Calgary, took off on Runway 28 and flew right over Cochrane Hill (no one flying and it is still snowy there).

Then flew over Golden and no one was flying Mount 7 either (still lots more snow), then over Silver Star Ski Resort with a great view north to Mara Lake (still more snow).

Then past over Hope as the jet cancelled IFR and passed over the south end of Harrison Lake and skimmed Woodside Mountain at about 5-6000 feet (the same altitude I was at yesterday when I flew Woodside!) and then right under the Sumas Launch at about 2200 feet as he did a straight in approach to land at Abbotsford Airport. I waited for the captain to open the cockpit after we landed and asked him about his altitudes and he thought he was at 3000 feet over Woodside (I know he was higher), so I mentioned that we fly Paragliders and Hanggliders there and he just shrugged? What a bug splatter we would make at 250 knots! - Jim

April 2 Woodside sunny with cloudy periods 30% POP light and variable -2.5°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - lots of kiting at Eagle Ranch with N winds, but Ian J and Martina hiked up Woodside anyway and they called at 3:00 PM that it was coming up in light cycles; so Jack, Roman, Ihor, Paul and I piled into Jack's truck and drove up. I had to be at Abbotsford Airport by 6:00 so I launched first and scratched around until I hit a nice bullet thermal that took me up to 1300 meters. Determined to fly east of the towers I drove straight for the mountain and climbed all the way as a helicopter flew under me as they headed towards Chehalis Lake.

I topped out at 1500 meters and started watching my watch as the others climbed out too, Jack getting high for the first time on his Fiesta and Martina skying Ian J out for a time!

When I headed out to land Jack, Roman and Ian were still boating around and having fun. I flew out over the Fraser enjoying the view of the river and the dykes near Kilby Park cause I was still high. Very bouyant air between strong thermals! Good to be back in the air after last weekend - Jim

April 1 Woodside sunny with cloudy periods 30% POP light and variable -3.0°/1000'
(unstable lapse rate)
Woodside Report - Leeside all day, kiting at Eagle Ranch with Jeff Remple having an exciting, sinky flight on his HG landing short at Eagle Ranch!

Blanchard Report - Was strong SW all day yesterday, and the hang gliders were having fun. It was marginal for PG - as penetration was slow. I was up for about 45 minutes and it took about a third of that time just to penetrate from launch to LZ - Thomas

March 2002 Site of the Day archives a few great days days with lots of snow and rain mixed in.

February 2002 Site of the Day archives two epic days already (4.5 hours and 2.5 hours!).

January 2002 Site of the Day archives Mexico vacation shots, some local flying but it was wet on the coast.

December 2001 Site of the Day archives pretty stable locally, wettest December on record, some good days sprinkled thru the month.

November 2001 Site of the Day archives pretty stable locally, had some good days at Woodside +2 hours, lots of rain later in the month.

October 2001 Site of the Day archives pretty stable locally, but great flying at Chelan at the Women's Fly In.

September 2001 Site of the Day archives starting to get pretty stable, more sled rides forecast for October.

Aug 2001 Site of the Day archives Mara, Bridal, till some great flights locally

July 2001 Site of the Day archives Road Trip Month, Golden, Mara, points east!

June 2001 Site of the Day archives Great Month, 3 hours of airtime for some pilots every time they flew Bridal Lower! Some getting up to 6 hours in a single flight!

May 2001 Site of the Day archives Unstable Month, 2-3 hours of airtime for some pilots every time they flew Bridal Lower!

April 2001 Site of the Day archives Rainy Month, not as much airtime for some pilots

March 2001 Site of the Day archives Spring has Sprung!

February 2001 Site of the Day archives Spring is in the Air!

January 2001 Site of the Day archives - Mexico Flying Trip

December 2000 Site of the Day archives

November 2000 Site of the Day archives (great month for airtime!)

October 2000 Site of the Day archives

September 2000 Site of the Day archives

July - August 2000 Site of the Day archives

June 2000 Site of the Day archives

March - May 2000 Site of the Day archives

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