DAY 2 : Panchgani has all that a quaint hill station offers other than stunning flying. Bakeries, cheerful market places, tourists, amazing flora n fauna of the hills n what have you.
Flying was epic, ideal 3 to 5 m/s thermals for those doing the ‘Thermalling/XC Course’. We were on the guidance mode at Harrison’s Folly. Kanan ThakurJaydev Page were getting better n better with their thermalling skills while Omkar Kulkarni & Anuj Puranik dabbled in & out enjoying their initial frustrations of catching thermals. Instructors Sachin PathareJitendra Chindaliya & Akash Shelar guided students. Alok Mihani& Badrinarayan went to Khingar take off and had interesting flights with collapses at the inversion layer. Hope they can share their flight experiences soon.
The secret to Panchgani flying is to climb high & travel high. At lower levels (1500 & below) its a maze n the winds, due to terrain shape, valleys n the sun’s movement are mixing n moving rather unpredictably & one needs to really careful while making transitions n other decisions. Higher up one only needs to know the wind direction at one’s level and covering distance is rather easy n enjoyable. Find a nice line along a long ridge and you should be smiling. Stay high’ is the name of the game here.
Today the forecast is ESE winds and we’re back on Harrison’s. The goal is to learn to identify thermal sources, their shape n size, thermal drift, thermalling technique, coring & centring and thermal safety. Hope to make the best of the day, play and see how high & far our wings take us today…

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