'3 Milk Runs'. Intermediate XC Guiding through the Lakes District, 2018.

David Ashcroft - 09/03/2017

CSC Intermediate XC Guiding - a flexible and spontaneous event to target the best of the weather for classic ridge runs through the Lakes District. Three natural ridge runs through the Lakes are proposed at the moment, these face West, North and East. Because conditions and wind direction are more vital for a successful day, we need to be flexible about the date and therefore will notify those having shown interest by contacting them by mobile ONLY just a few days beforehand. Please note, that on the morning of the event you will need to text me back for confirmation it’s still on and where to meet. We’ll probably have to meet up near goal and car share to site. Chances are these events will be on weekends. On the hill we will have a detailed brief of the best route to take to goal, including ‘saves’, thermal houses’, cruxes etc. Pilots familiar with flying the route will guide (lead), and other experienced pilots will shepherd behind.
These XC's aren't for low air time pilots, but for those who are experienced in gale hanging and have already bagged numerous 10km flights in the Lake District. Option 1 is a popular and yet awkward run down to Ambleside. There are two other routes which capable XC pilots may be interested in taking part. I'll try and grade them with some sense of Difficulty / Courage / and worst 'Walk Out' to nearest roads. It’s not easy to measure the difficulty of an XC so I will compare them to the Clough – Ambleside run, which most pilots who fly in the Lakes will have either considered flying, attempted or accomplished to some degree.

Option (1): Clough down to Ambleside (NW - W). Can be dangerous if below ridge height between Helvelyn and Grasmere. Grade - hard / 3 balls / 0 km (ie. there is a main road all the way).

Option (2): Only experienced pilot who has flown Clough to Ambleside (or similar) numerous times in a variety of conditions should consider this route. Northerly. Ennerdale to Pillar, then great Gable returning along the Wasdale Screes. It's my favourite dog leg through the Lakes. A little intimidating due to it's remoteness and unfamiliarity to most pilots. Grade - tricky / 5 balls / 10 km walk! I think there’s a detailed write up in the knowledge section of the CSC Website, with photos!

Option (3): Easterly. Again, for capable / experienced XC pilots. Coniston Old Man to Keswick. Ambitious and exciting run across the big stuff. A few big jumps via Langdale, Great Gable and possibly Catbells. Grade - tricky / 4 balls / 6 km.

Radios would be useful, and mobiles for contact before and after. This XC guiding has to rely on you to vet yourself. Jumping straight into XC, lacking in experience and skill, might shorten your flying carrier. XC flying is a natural progression for capable and confident pilots having spent many hours on different sites in varying conditions and 100% in tune with their glider. 
If you are keen and relatively flexible to attend, please e-mail me on canddashcroft@hotmail.com or text on 07752750869 choosing 1, 2, 3 or all 3 of the options you consider suit your abilities and wish to attempt.

Have a good year.


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