Melbourne Gliding Club

Club camp(s) update

04 Feb 2017 17:00 | Anonymous member

Mt Beauty Camp Easter 2017

Mt Beauty is situated in the picturesque alpine region of north-east Victoria. It offers a great scenic and mountain flying experience. The highest mountain in Victoria, Mt Bogong, is situated 5km from the airfield, though you have to climb 5,000 feet to reach the summit. Mt Buffalo is to the west, and Falls Creek is to the south. The camp officially runs from Good Friday until Easter Monday but if the weather looks good and there is enough interest from members then the camp can be extended until the following Saturday. Accommodation options vary from camping and caravan sites, to motel suites and house rentals, but book early as Easter is one of Mt Beauty’s busiest tourist periods.

 Our excellent host for this camp for over many years has been the Mt Beauty Gliding Club. They are a friendly mob who host an annual Easter barbeque on the airfield. They also offer a winch launching experience. There are no tasks set for this camp; it is very much a social and family orientated event. There are often meals/barbeques hosted at club members’ accommodation. Within the town’s boundaries there are wineries, restaurants, bakeries, and bike hire. For the more adventurists, there are walking tracks to the summit of Mt Bogong. And the tourist town of Bright, just over 30 minutes drive through the Tawonga gap, is renowned for its Easter markets.

 What to bring? The family; summer and winter clothing; log book; maps; and enthusiasm.

Expeditions / Independent operations

Want to fly somewhere different? As a club member if you want to take an aircraft away to a gliding event as private hire there is not a problem. You need to have fulfilled independent operator’s requirements as per the GFA Manual of standard operating procedures (MOSOP) and VMFG requirements. If you want to organize an expedition at a site and date other than normal club camps involving club aircraft and members, then put the proposal to the ops panel.

Gliding is a labour intensive sport, but the flying rewards are many!

Even with all the technology available – GPS; computer generated weather forecasts; soaring specific analyses of conditions; awesome cockpit technology; aerodynamics etc. - gliders still can’t move on the ground without a bit of old fashioned human effort. This also applies to the moving of equipment and aircraft to the various camps and expeditions. Although at times we ferry a two-seat glider behind a tug to the camp we still require up to four gliders plus the expeditions trailer to be taken to the camp and return by road. There is no sugar coating with this task. Single seat gliders in trailers can weigh up to 1,000 kg; two-seat gliders in trailers can weigh up to 1,500 kg; and the expedition trailer up to 1,000 kg. We do offer several incentives to encourage members to attach a club trailer to the back of their car (taking into account the maximum tow rate of the vehicle). The compensation is having first allocation of the aircraft you towed up to the camp on the day you want, or being reimbursed 0.10 cents per km whilst towing the glider trailer.

Pilot’s requirements for camps and expeditions

To fly as pilot in command in a single seat glider (or in the case of a mutual flight) pilots must be rated and current in the aircraft they will be flying in. As an early pilot, pre-solo, you can still fly and enjoy flying at camps with an experienced pilot. Post-solo pilots who wish to fly at a site other than Bacchus Marsh must have a site check with an instructor. Unless you are cross country endorsed, you are restricted to the local area.

There are no annual checks conducted at Club camps, so pilots must ensure they are:

·       within the 12 month validity for their annual check;

·       current on the aircraft they wish to fly;

·       all documents are current including, a cross country check list, charts, and log book.


Max Callingham

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