On Saturday August 20th the winds were 10 knots gusting 16 almost straight down the runway. It allowed for excellent training circumstances for our students. With Ryan being our only instructor currently, we start flying pretty early. So around eight AM our students start pre-flighting and towing gliders out via golf cart.
Our flight operations are almost entirely executed by the students with adult member supervision. Saturdays are student training days so we have them run wings on takeoff for each other, hook up tow robes, tow gliders, walk wings, and anything else that might need attention. The most important thing that our students do is keep members hydrated. With a temperature of 95 degrees, constant movement and little shade, heat exhaustion can be a serious possibility. The club keeps a stalked fridge so that our instructor, tow pilots, students, and members remain happy and healthy. Most Saturdays we have a number of people awaiting flights and we do have a shaded seating area out by the runway that a number of people take advantage of.
Saturday was particularly a special day because our instructor had his 200th glider flight. This shows the incredible progress not only of our instructor, but our club. Our club does an excellent job attending to its members. We provide training for about 5 students every Saturday, and each student receives about an hour of flight time which can amount to about three tows depending on the weather. We hope to build time for the rest of the club members as well.
We are not without fault however. One of the training flights experienced a rope break this weekend. This means that while on tow, the rope snapped. The instructor and student were fine, and were at a safe altitude when it occurred. Our goal is to limit the number of incidents at the airport. It was determined that the cause of the rope break was a small knot in the tow rope seen before takeoff. We have made a new tow rope, and established that no rope will be used if there is a knot or any wear in it.