1.5 Months of Soaring in the Club Class…
…and pleasantly surprised! I have to admit that after an intense year of flying the „OLC“, a Discus2ct, I was a bit skeptical about switching to a club class glider. But after ten flights and some 40 hours in the cockpit of DG Flugzeugbau’s LS1-f Neo my skepticism was finally blown away by the joy of flying this wonderful ship. With their modified LS1, DG is placing an absolutely great sailplane at the disposal of junior pilots.
During my very first flight with the LS1, in a weak wave along the Odenwald, I could take advantage of some easy conditions and get accustomed to the sailplane. The second flight was already somewhat more challenging, soaring in warm air under blue skies. With a cloud base of only 600-1000 meters above ground level, I tried a small training task in the Rhine Valley. But already during my first few circles I could recognize the comfortable LS-feeling I had experienced before during several hundred hours spent in an LS8.
Shortly after this flight I had the opportunity to launch the LS1 for a first bigger flight. I was able to achieve 550km between Weinheim, Eichstätt, Heilbronn and Giebelstadt, managing some difficult sections during the day. “My” LS1 showed a very good feeling for thermals and saved me from almost outlanding near Heilbronn. After those first days I accomplished numerous tasks measuring from 100 up to 800km.
I will most likely be remembering the latter for a long time. This flight has been one of my most interesting soaring experiences. The day before had with several 1000km flights already been a great day in Northern Germany, and the air mass was now supposed to move on southwards. But it would become unstable; the forecast had announced rain showers. At 11am we could already watch the first big snow showers develop over the Spessart. Towards the Rhön the weather looked much better, but when after a quick detour to Erfurt I tried to fly back on the same line, there was nothing but snow showers. At this point I was almost sure I would spend my next hours on the ground waiting for my crew.
I was then really surprised to find strong lift even under very small cloud puffs in a milky sky. While I accepted this unusual weather situation my confidence returned. After 8 hours I finally landed back in Weinheim, counting 800km.
Now I will have to be patient and wait for a larger weather window to score some DMSt points.