To say that it was windy would be an understatement - the winds were around 10-20 mph out of the northeast all day, right at the legal flying limit (safety code restricts us to winds of 20 mph or less). Not only were folding chairs, flight cards, and small boxes being blown around on the ground, but the rockets were also pushed to the west almost as fast as they left the pad. A few ended up in the western treeline (which was a decent distance away) including a beautiful level 1 certification attempt (apogee parachute deployment) and a level 2 rocket loaded with expensive tracking hardware. It is currently hanging about 100 feet up, continuously transmitting its location to anyone listening on the right frequency.
Nonetheless, I opted to fly a couple of rockets - I spent 3 hours last night prepping 7 rockets for today, and I was NOT leaving the field without flying something. First up was the SAI Hen Grenade, making its debut on an Estes B6-4. Good altitude, and it landed in the parking area. I followed with my Semroc Micron on an A6-4. Decent altitude, but the little devil drifted about twice as far as the Hen Grenade, despite using a small streamer as a recovery device. That was enough to convince me that it was time to stop while I was ahead. I had flown 2 rockets and got them back; I doubted that the rocket gods were going to permit that streak to continue.
|SAI Hen Grenade clone heads skyward on an Estes B6-4 (click to enlarge).|
|Art Woodling's 1968 Estes Scout begins its arcing trajectory (click to enlarge).|
(Be sure you select HD in the settings when viewing the below videos)
Duane (who had wisely decided to fly none of his rockets) and I loaded up around 3 PM and headed back to Huntsville, stopping along the way to have some BBQ at Larry's BBQ in Winchester (if it has a pig out front, it is probably good eating). Two rockets flown, none lost, and some nice pictures - not a bad tally for a very blustery day.