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Cross-Country Flight Planning and More

posted May 5, 2011, 12:04 PM by Unknown user
In the past, CSS has participated in the SSA badge program.  That program was instituted to promote SAFE transition into cross-country soaring.  The bronze badge is considered a gateway to cross-country flying, followed by silver and gold badges for extended duration, distance, and altitude flights.  I am proposing we re-institute this program at our club.  Toward that goal, I have submitted my application as an SSA instructor.  That position will allow me to prepare others for cross-country flying, issue and evaluate the bronze badge exam, and act as an observer for cross-country badge excursions. This summer I will also be gaining experience by flying with cross-country pilots out of Ephrata and flying solo excursions as well. 

If you are interested in an official badge flight, please let me know.  In order to record your flight, you will have to fly the LS-3 in order to make use of the Cambridge 302 flight computer. (I have been working with that device for the last couple of weeks in an attempt to sort out some bugs.  I need more time to do this.) I would also like to encourage CSS members to think about purchasing a portable flight recorder for use in other gliders.  We can get a position recorder for $130 (distance flights only) and a full flight recorder (distance and altitude flights) for about $550.  Notably, you can participate in the on-line contest (OLC) with unofficial data from your GPS unit.  We can help you with this.

Before stepping too far away from the safety of home, I recommend that you read carefully the section on cross-country flying and planning flights in the Glider Flying Handbook.  Then, read as much about cross-country flying as you can. In particular read Kai Gerstan's Introduction to Cross-Country Soaring. In any case, plan your flight as recommended in the GFH!  Do not become a mindless player in a  "greedy algorithm"!  (A greedy algorithm is a computer program which fails, due to aimless meandering prompted by "greedy" choices.)  We'll be having a cross-country seminar soon.  Stand by.

Fly Safely,