Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
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By Flyin'Dutch'
#1693087
Waveflyer wrote:I wonder if there is a gliding pilot on here who could explain where and when we could expect to see gliders soaring, thermalling etc so that we could keep a better look out and be better prepared to “see and avoid”?


1. Always pass gliding sites at the leeward side; most local gliders will stay windward so they can get back to the site when they run out of lift.

2. As a rule of thumb; the thermal lift will normally be found on the bisection of the angle between sun and wind under the typical cumulus clouds so expect most gliders to be under that part of the cloud.

3. Glider pilots typically will stay in the thermal until they hit the cloudbase - so I stay away from the cloudbase.

4. Few thermals inbetween the clouds (unless it is a clear blue day and to dry for condensation to form clouds)

5. Light surfaces are conducive to forming convective activity - sandy/heather type planes therefore are usually the area we'll head to find lift, as are ridges. Darker areas usually avoided.

6. We look where other gliders are thermalling - so when you see one thermalling others will be nearby.

7. Both in the cruise but especially whilst thermalling gliders are very difficult to see.
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By BirdsEyeView
#1693096
Flyin'Dutch' wrote:
Waveflyer wrote:I wonder if there is a gliding pilot on here who could explain where and when we could expect to see gliders soaring, thermalling etc so that we could keep a better look out and be better prepared to “see and avoid”?


1. Always pass gliding sites at the leeward side; most local gliders will stay windward so they can get back to the site when they run out of lift.

2. As a rule of thumb; the thermal lift will normally be found on the bisection of the angle between sun and wind under the typical cumulus clouds so expect most gliders to be under that part of the cloud.

3. Glider pilots typically will stay in the thermal until they hit the cloudbase - so I stay away from the cloudbase.

4. Few thermals inbetween the clouds (unless it is a clear blue day and to dry for condensation to form clouds)

5. Light surfaces are conducive to forming convective activity - sandy/heather type planes therefore are usually the area we'll head to find lift, as are ridges. Darker areas usually avoided.

6. We look where other gliders are thermalling - so when you see one thermalling others will be nearby.

7. Both in the cruise but especially whilst thermalling gliders are very difficult to see.


Just adding in some other points:
3. ...Unless some are cloud flying. Yes, they fly in cloud too if the pilot has the rating.
4. ...Unless there is a cloud street whereby gliders will fly along the street or cumulus sections between lift and sink points thereby increasing flight range. This is how x-country gliders achieve the vast ranges.
But let's face it, they could be anywhere in what is a small flying space that is most of UK Class G.
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By Lefty
#1693142
In addition to the above - some time ago, there used to be a glider pilot on theForum who would post notices about upcoming glider competitions - so that powered pilots might know where to avoid. Is there any in the BGA who would be prepared to take up that task again?

IIRC,
1) All we could ever know is that a completion will take place from xxx airfield on yyy date.
2) We would never know their direct of travel or routes (outbound or return) until approx 11.00 - 11.30 on the day of the competition. It is common practice for the route not to be decided until (around) 10.30 - 11.00 on the day - once the judges have had time to fully assess the weather - and thus where it is feasible to send them.
3) there is generally a mass launch between C 10.30 - 12.00 (as soon as there is enough lift on the route),
then a mass return in the late afternoon.
4) Each pilot will decide his own route to get to the mandated turning points - therefore you may find them many many miles off the straight line track between the turning points.
5) It is quite common for several gliding clubs to hold competitions on the same day - especially in summer.
6) Therefore you should really be on your watch 100% of the time - as you really are likely to find gliders almost anywhere - at any time. NB TTBOMK, gliders don't generally fly cross country before C10.30 or after 16.30 as there is not enough lift. However they will do flights in the vicinity of their airfields from early morning till near dusk.
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By Tim Dawson
#1693146
This year, a lot of those notams are going to have their actual (rough) routes depicted in SkyDemon too, rather than just being big circles.
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By Maxthelion
#1693153
As a former glider pilot I can echo the 'them and us' attitude being rife. It's a real shame it exists and I'd love it if we did more to exchange rides in order to build bridges. Ditto re the microlight world.
Also, that's great news that the competition task routes are making their way into SD.
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By Charliesixtysix
#1693201
Lefty wrote:In addition to the above - some time ago, there used to be a glider pilot on theForum who would post notices about upcoming glider competitions - so that powered pilots might know where to avoid. Is there any in the BGA who would be prepared to take up that task again?

IIRC,
1) All we could ever know is that a completion will take place from xxx airfield on yyy date.
2) We would never know their direct of travel or routes (outbound or return) until approx 11.00 - 11.30 on the day of the competition. It is common practice for the route not to be decided until (around) 10.30 - 11.00 on the day - once the judges have had time to fully assess the weather - and thus where it is feasible to send them.
3) there is generally a mass launch between C 10.30 - 12.00 (as soon as there is enough lift on the route),
then a mass return in the late afternoon.
4) Each pilot will decide his own route to get to the mandated turning points - therefore you may find them many many miles off the straight line track between the turning points.
5) It is quite common for several gliding clubs to hold competitions on the same day - especially in summer.
6) Therefore you should really be on your watch 100% of the time - as you really are likely to find gliders almost anywhere - at any time. NB TTBOMK, gliders don't generally fly cross country before C10.30 or after 16.30 as there is not enough lift. However they will do flights in the vicinity of their airfields from early morning till near dusk.


https://glidingtasks.co.uk/
By sky_high30
#1693268
low&slow wrote:Phone screenshot of Glidernet.org this pm:

Image


Never assume that gliding activity will be limited to the area around the airfield. DTM and DFR in the above picture - on the far right of the map, in the middle normally live just north of the black flag in the middle (where 509 is).

We got there having routed via the "M" on the top of the map (just south actually, turned Grantham - I was in DTM, a mate was flying DFR).
By BehyBill
#1693284
PeteSpencer wrote:I’ve posted before about the day when I had to abandon a days flying from our strip when a gaggle of gliders from Tibenham just up the road in a gliding competition lost lift suddenly : Four landed on our strip and one in the crops alongside .it took the rest of the afternoon to clear them so I pushed the Ac back into the hangar and went home....

Peter :wink:


That is what I call a Tug pilot :thumleft:
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By Gertie
#1693285
shortwing wrote:As a glider pilot, I hated the attitude of the last club I was a member off.

"we have right of way so power can move for us"

Whereas in actual fact the gliders are faster, are more manoeuvrable and have better visibility than the typical power spamcan.

I have usually taken the view that in the vicinity of gliders it's not easy for me to avoid them, because they never fly straight and level, and not being a glider pilot I have no idea what they're going to do next. So I keep an eye on them, and I fly straight and level, so that at least they will be able to predict where I will be from one second to the next. (Obviously I would take avoiding action if I saw something like a bunch of them in a spiral below a cumulous cloud.)

One pair once took the ****. They turned and pointed straight at me, one passing around 100' over me and the other around 100' below me.

By the way, obviously a power pilot cannot hear a nearby glider. Can the glider pilot hear the nearby engine?
By TouringTuggy
#1693309
Gertie wrote:I have usually taken the view that in the vicinity of gliders it's not easy for me to avoid them, because they never fly straight and level, and not being a glider pilot I have no idea what they're going to do next. So I keep an eye on them, and I fly straight and level, so that at least they will be able to predict where I will be from one second to the next. (Obviously I would take avoiding action if I saw something like a bunch of them in a spiral below a cumulous cloud


Flying straight and level, you are much less visible than when showing some bank. For visibility when Power Flarm shows a closing bearingless target that I haven’t yet seen, I usually fly a bit of an S. Also helps lookout! (Though I don’t fly anything with a solid roof, always hate not being able to see into a turn..).

Power Flarm of course tells you all you need to know on where to look for other transmitting Flarm units, which the vast majority of the cross country glider fleet has fitted.
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By BehyBill
#1693519
Gertie wrote:I have usually taken the view that in the vicinity of gliders it's not easy for me to avoid them, because they never fly straight and level, and not being a glider pilot I have no idea what they're going to do next.


I find much easier to spot traffic while gliding (you have nothing else to do appart from looking out for other gliders or traffic) than when flying power and avoidance in a glider should be a non-event, so when gliding I just take avoidance or make myself visible, many times I did not even feel aircrafts acknowledge me rocking wings :D

The only time I got surprised in class G in a glider was at 4000ft overtaken by a twin jet (Mustang? or Falcon?) in a nice CAVOK day, until now nothing did come out of that airprox report :roll: (I am not exaggerating but I herd the sound), honestly I did not see him coming at all but in my mind I still hope he was able to see me and he knows what he was doing :shock: