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Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

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Old 06-12-2008, 07:57 PM
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Default Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Hi Guys,

I am in Alleghany County, North Carolina and I fly at a hay field on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It is a very large field suitable for all types off electric planes, and even bungee type sailplanes.

I have been flying there for two years, and have never seen another flyer there. It is not private property, and is open to use by anyone. It is property owned by Uncle Sam and leased to farmers to grow hay. I have only seen it cut once last year, and only half the filed was cut and rolled. There is plenty of space to fly, with no traffic, or radio glitches. The Station's Inn, a motorcycle resort is right down the road for refreshments and relief.

The reason I am posting this, is I am looking for others that enjoy the peacefulness of electric flight, and would like to meet up there at some time for some flying.

The field is located at approx MM 248

Please feel free to PM me for more info. I also know of a place for slope soaring on the Blue Ridge.

Capt. Randy
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Old 06-12-2008, 09:29 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Bluff Mountain and the Lump?
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Old 06-13-2008, 05:48 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Hey, guys, forget about keeping the info private. Skip the pm's and just post what you got right here in public where everyone can share the info.


The Lump is about 3 miles south of Hwy16 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It's what it is, a lump. Not actually a cliff slope, but it appears to almost always be working somewhat. You need a bungee or short highstart. It's East of Boone and NorthWest of Wilkesboro and about due North of Hickory. It's a little more than an hour and a half from Winston-Salem.

There is also a large area up the Parkway from the Lump. Don't remember the name of it, but it's also a good highstart field.

I don't know any real slopes up there. Would love to know of one. ????? Please?
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Old 06-13-2008, 06:09 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Doughton Park/ Bluff Mountain is around MM 240. At least that's the way in that we use. We'll have to setup a "fly-in".

The Lump is around MM 265
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Old 06-13-2008, 06:34 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

I've flown the Lump alot but with gas prices not recently. That's the only place on the BRP I've flown slope.
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Old 06-13-2008, 06:49 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

You guys must be really pissed that you dont have any decent slopes there>>>>


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Old 06-13-2008, 06:52 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

I'm ready to move to Lima but I don't speak Peruvian, only Spanish...
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:04 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

da Rock, Evan,

Yes the slope place is the Lump. I was having a Senior moment when I was typing, and didn't want to appear dumb with the name.

Doughton park is also close to me, but I've never flown there. It sure would be fun to hook up with a few guys for a fun morning of flying. I'm sure I would learn a lot from you guys that actually fly slope. My sailplanes all have motors except my little Fling, which I'm sure you guys would call a Knat.
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:13 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

The Fling, smaller one, is actually a very good thermal glider. It has very good area for it's weight. it's good for very light slope lift too, I've flown mine off the sides of bridge embankments and small dams at lakes, even a sea wall and small dunes in Florida.
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Old 06-13-2008, 02:18 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

At my field when there is no wind, there is a guy who brings his tiny Fling and launches it and loops four times off the launch! I want to build a super lightweight Guppy to match that perfomance.

You mean you dont speak Quechua? Dont tell me you dont know how to use a llama parking lot either....
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Old 06-13-2008, 02:53 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

How much spanish has been incorporated into Quechua? LLama parking? Sounds fun!
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Old 06-13-2008, 04:18 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Actually quechua is pretty much a dead language... And if you cant ride a llama you're doomed to go on the urban transport buses... the worst experience of your life.


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Old 06-13-2008, 04:34 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

We have lots of hills and mountains in the western part of North Carolina, but they're covered in trees. There really aren't any classic type slopes anywhere. There are a number of balds, but they're just round tops of hills. Nothing with any distance left and right. No real "faces".

That's good and bad. Bad that there aren't really many of the balds. Even worse that there are none that'd work for slope racing etc. But somewhat good in that most of the balds will work from a number of directions. The Lump will have slope lift from any number of wind directions, so you don't have to wait for say a SW wind. You'll probably find lift there with most of the winds we get up there. We used to drive from one slope to another in Minnesnowta trying to find one that was working that day. Good chance the Lump is working from some direction almost any time you drive up there.

Doughton Park is pretty good. We've flown just off the parking loop. Hike up the hill in the big meadow and that's sort of another Lump.
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Old 06-13-2008, 04:41 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

What is a pisser is the way most of the balds are. At the Lump for example, when you're on it's top and look south where it's face is, you're looking straight at the top of the trees that come up that face. They are 40' tall and 50' from you and you're looking straight out at their tops. The slope lift curls right over them at you when it's coming from that direction. Look west and the trees are a bit farther away, but there is less slope. You need a bungee. Or electric.
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Old 10-26-2008, 09:02 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Today I had my first trip to "The Lump"... what a great experience... I met 2 very nice guys that showed me and my buddy how to fly there...
Mike and Doug, if you read this - THANKS.

Hopefully we will get the chance to go there again, soon.
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:10 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Were the winds the right direction? I know the weather was nice...
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Old 10-27-2008, 11:55 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

I guess so... the Pros who fly there all the time were flying on the south side of the Lump and everything worked OK...
Can't wait until I get back there - it was nice. I just flew my "EasyGlider Electric" so I did not need a high-start. The others
were flying these super fast slope soarers which were unbelievable... If I learn to do this better, I just may have to get one.
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Old 10-27-2008, 12:44 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Any wind direction with south in it works there, Southeast, SSW, etc... Didn't seem like there was enough wind yesterday for it to be much fun up htere. You need 20mph or so to be fun and fast... At least I need that to get me to drive that far... Hope to see you up there sometime.
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Old 10-27-2008, 06:57 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

The forecast called for winds of 10 to 14 mph... don't really know the exact speed it got to but the guys were doing some cool fancy flying. I like the relaxed type of flying and only needed some thermals to stay afloat. Thermals were there, above the trees on the south side.
Maybe we'll see you there someday... have fun.
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Old 10-30-2008, 09:37 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Max Patch off I-40, exit 7 in the Smokies. Another beautiful bald and part of the Appalachian Trail. Works with NW and SE winds.

There is always Stone Mountain in North Carolina. It is actually just a little east of the Blue Ridge Parkway just south of Virginia. Most of the times I've been there there was a gentle SW wind hitting the rock face. Even without the wind, there is an abundance of thermals to keep you flying all day. However, you need to enjoy hiking. It's about a 3.5 moderate hike around and up to the top or a grueling 1.5 mile climb (not for the weak of heart or full of hand ) and you'll need a pair of big brass kohones to throw you plane off the edge. Everything had better be working and be charged because there is little chance of recovery if you go down in the forest below. Your landing zones consist of your hand, trees, and rock. I have seen people using nets to catch in places like this, but I have never tried it. It is harder than you think to fly into something the size of a soccer goal. Now, that is from the top. At the bottom there is a large field that is probably large enough to launch from and put you flying from below without the hike if you're hunting thermals. Don't know. I'm sure there are better places to fly, but I enjoy this area anyhow. There is camping nearby.

P.S. Be careful of the hawks ( don't ask me how I know ).

P.S.S. Always like to hear of slope in east Tennessee and western North Carolina. I head over to Charlotte region pretty often and have yet to find a decent local slope that far east.
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Old 11-16-2008, 12:47 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Anyone ever tried gliding or slope soaring at Pilot Mountain in North Carolina?
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Old 11-16-2008, 12:51 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Anyone ever tried gliding or slope soaring at Pilot Mountain in North Carolina?
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Old 11-16-2008, 09:41 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

We have thought about it as we live close by - Greensboro - but even though we went there on a "scouting" trip, we can't decide if it would be safe to land at the big parking lot... I don't think there would be a problem launching but retrieving could be a different thing all together.

If you try it, please put a post here - Thanks.
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Old 11-16-2008, 11:18 PM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

We have encountered some complications flying at overlooks and such when it comes to rangers and spectators. People watching seem to love it, so much so that they will park or stand and watch you not realizing that you can't land until they move. We sometimes have to sling it in over the parking lot and land along the curb of the road behind the tree line. We try and wait for the officials to leave before we do that. You only get one chance to make a first impression, so we all need to safe and responsible to keep in good with those that may raise an eyebrow about what we do. And for heavens sake, don't chase the hawks with your plane. Just do a loop to scare them away.
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Old 11-17-2008, 04:33 AM
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Default RE: Glider/Sailplane Flying in North Carolina

Quote:
ORIGINAL: scottbral

Anyone ever tried gliding or slope soaring at Pilot Mountain in North Carolina?

Pilot Mountain is really just a knob and doesn't have anything even closely resembling a launch area, much less a landing area, at least not on it's mount. I've scouted around the other public accessable areas and trails, and no suitable places come to mind. Too many trees, no real slope faces.

BTW, in the attached photo, Pilot Mtn is just over 8 miles NNW of that R/C flying field.
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