Glen Coe, Ben Ledi or Bridgend...all seemed possibilities earlier in the week as forecasts were surveyed but, in the end, the choice became a tortuous walk up Ben Ledi or meet at the Glen Café for coffee and bacon rolls before a gentle stroll up Bridgend..coffee won!
11am saw 6 folk enjoying the coffee on the last working day before the café closed for the winter (the usual 'club house' staff were on a well deserved holiday) whilst watching the autumnal leaves being blown from the trees outside. The forecast was due to ease by 1pm and turn N-Easterly so we all departed for Bridgend arriving to find Ian starting the walk up and Jed a silhouette on the horizon below take off. Still fairly breezy at the base so a slow walk to the top followed. We arrived to find Jed clipped in, facing slightly out of wind (it was still northerly) before flicking the wing up and heading backwards in a sort of hop, skip, jump takeoff before trying the ground-handle from a prone position. Still a tad strong then!!
Time to revert to the usual idle craic on the top of the hill whilst continuing to check the wind and sky. Most topics were covered, Brexit, Trump, when will the Gordon be open again, kitchen refits and man flu. Bored with the idle banter Derek quietly sloped off and started to unpack lower down the hill before taking off and heading out into the sunnier side of the valley. We all commented that the flying looked bouncy before noticing Jed take off and take a couple of beats towards Megget to gain height. Both seemed to be enjoying the rolls and pitches whilst the rest of the Wingbeat psychology group watched the cloud bank rolling in from the east...with wet wispies below it! Derek, who had been playing in lift towards the loch, had obviously seen this and appeared to be heading to a sunny patch on the far side of the loch although in reality he was heading for the landing field. Jed pushed out into the valley and landed, just managing to get wet as he packed the glider.
That left 6 on the hill wondering what to do, wait for the rain to pass and then either walk down or fly down. Since Jamie had now arrived walking was only an option for Ian...actually walking was the only option Ian had since that is what he had promised 'A' before leaving home that he would save his knees. The rest of us unfurled the wings in the hope that the wind would pick up from zero. Tommy took the first hint of breeze followed rapidly by Fred and Jamie...2 took sled rides to landing while Fred searched for any available lift (none!). That left Rob and me hoping, in vane, for a breeze to avoid the in-evitable forward launch. In the end we both used our newly acquired 'French' technique to launch at the same time and head to the landing.
All in all an uneventful day of mainly 'blather' on the hill, we could probably all have flown earlier but Derek's comment of 'interesting flying' after landing was probably a slight understatement and there will always be another day.