Day 7 at Minden

Today’s weather was low and slow, allowing for plenty of dramatic images and video of rocks.

Shadow of JOY on Mount Patterson

If only I had held the camera for a profile shot—you would have been able to see all of JOY’s shadow on Mount Patterson, not just half. Ah well.

Luckily, my video camera was working today. To see some of what I recorded, read on…

High winds during yesterday’s rest day encouraged everyone to secure their gliders in trailers prior to resting. We re-rigged them earlier today. Here’s a sped-up video of JOY coming back together:

In reality it takes about twelve minutes for us, which is still pretty darn fast.

The weatherman warned us that Minden was in “recovery mode” from the high winds mentioned above, which in today’s case meant weak lift that wouldn’t extend very high, barely higher than the tops of the bigger mountains on the eastern edge of the Carson Valley. The contest director called a task involving turn points not far from Minden, ideally ensuring that people needing to return to Minden could do so quickly and safely at almost any time. All but one of turn points were at other small airports to begin with, so easy landout options would be plentiful during this challenging day if Minden was not in reach. Here was the task:

In light of the day’s difficulty and the fact that we were flying a turn area task, most contestants elected to approach at least some of the waypoints only as close as was required to make the turn official. We were no different, only electing to graze the two northern turn areas. The southern two we penetrated fairly deeply, on the other hand, in hopes of racking up points.

This occasionally made for some dramatic scenery.

Above, one of the more exciting moments: hunting around Mount Patterson for some lift.

Below, we have the usual treatment of race video: three seconds pulled from every two minutes of raw contest footage. Enjoy!

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