Springtime Mid-Day Landing Reminder

Please tell what happened and how it might have been avoided. Names should be ommitted. This forum should help others learn from mistakes that caused or nearly caused a mishap.
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JD
Posts: 1696
Joined: Fri Apr 25, 2008 11:05 am

Springtime Mid-Day Landing Reminder

Post by JD » Thu Apr 21, 2016 11:41 am

I was exhausted by the time I came in to land yesterday and rather than patiently waiting in the string of thermals that were boiling off the wash by the SIBL fields, I worked my way down in sink over Santiago Estates then set up my approach.

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It began well until I allowed my base leg turn to swing wider than needed and drifted over the streamer pole on the berm next to the H2 landing area.

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My left wing hit the downward rolling edge of the thermal that typically kicks off from this berm. My glider got dumped hard and side-slipped hard toward the runway.

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I had enough initial airspeed so that I gently pulled up a few inches off the dirt. If I had panicked and pushed out the glider would have stalled from the sudden increase in AoA and impacted.

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Instead it pulled away smoothly but was now drifting toward the East.

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I was lined up with the edge of the berm and not the runway.

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I did what I could to gently correct in time to flare which I did a little early.

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I stumbled and belly-flopped as the glider settled and I tried to run.

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No hard done. Ron grabbed an excellent video with his iPhone which I will load when it gets to me on iCloud. The 2-second interval still photos are a bit more dramatic than the video as they catch the worst moment of the whole ordeal. Mine was not the only landing to be adversely affected by mid-day thermal turbulence. It was the messier of the two.

Reminders:

1 - Don't land when there lift coming off or near the LZ. Use that lift to stay up until there's a flush cycle. But keep an eye on all the flags and streamers!
2 - Give your self a long and straight approach rather that cutting the base leg turn by the streamer pole.
3 - Keep you AoA low enough that you will not stall the glider or even hit your MCA (minimum controllable airspeed)
4 - Use Greblo's BLES technique if your harness and glider allow adequate pitch down and later control with your hands low on the downtubes.
5 - Moonwalk the landing if you can.
6 - Have large skids (I did) or wheels so that if the bar gets dropped, it will not dig in and cause a bad whack.
7 - Don't fly yourself to exhaustion on epic days. You still have to land safely if you want to keep flying on the next epic day. I was on a photo run and this is a risk that results.

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User avatar
JD
Posts: 1696
Joined: Fri Apr 25, 2008 11:05 am

Post by JD » Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:50 pm

The video...

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M1Cc8k0RIX0[/youtube]

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