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Day off at Coombe Gibbet

Once again, Ben and I ‘bunked off’ work and drove down to Wiltshire. The forecast was good and we hoped to get some airtime in. The wind was northerly and so we headed for Coombe arriving at 8.45am. There was already one yellow glider in the air. It appeared to be quite windy but in the winter, the winds always appear stronger – its the cold. I had my winter suit, plus 3 other layers. I had been longing for this moment to try the Aspen 2. Due to the strongish wind, I opted to launch a little further down the slope. I popped it up and was lifted into the air immediately. The wing was noticably faster than my old Topas and so responsive. I headed west over the trees to the end of the ridge. There were some punchy spring thermals around. Ben launched 20 minutes later to join me. Soon we were flying with the kites – this was the life. I tried out big ears and the speed system and the acceleration was easy. The air in parts was a little rough but I felt confident on the wing – I did have a small frontal collapse but it popped out at once.

I landed after 2 hours as someone had had an accident when he tried to top land. It turns out that he stalled the wing trying to top land. From the air, I heard him call for help on the ground before others ran to help him. The helicopter air ambulance arrived straight away. I think the pilot broke his arm quite badly which was a great shame. Ben and I had to get back to London after this as Ben had an evening meeting.
Another great day of flying… It was good to get back home to Di and of course little Sebastian too!

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