San-D Van Pilot Appreciation Day
Saturday, October 14 21, 2017

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What did I learn?


Whether you saw my landing today or not, I think it is important to share what I learned. Kenny taught me to use every incident in my fights to learn to be a better pilot.

ONE...never assume that other pilots see me, know site protocol, or have the necessary skills to be a good pilot. very vigilant when launching, flying, or landing

THREE...if you cause a situation that did or might have caused injury to another pilot as soon as possible go to the other pilot apologize, state your errors, and ask for forgiveness.

I did not receive these courtesies. I had to go to the pilot in error, I had to explain to him his very poor choices, and I choose to forgive him even though he never asked me to.

I was told by many other pilots that I did well. I feel that my actions prevented injury or worse for either of us.

I also learned that there needs to be some kind of AJX repercussions for pilots who make choices that could be so dangerous to themselves or others.

If you saw this incident what did you learn?

'Repercussions' are the responsibility of the above. File a formal complaint with full details. Acts like this threaten our RRG fund and therefore adversely affect all USHPA members. Don't be a nice guy about it either.

I will take that under consideration. But this is not a me versus him...this is a what can we all learn to be better pilots, and what do we each do to encourage the improvement of e
very pilot. I gave forgiven the pilot. I seek no revenge. I seek safety for all of us.

There was a very close encounter of a paraglider and hanglider as they were landing. The hg had to take action to avert a collision. The pg made some very poor landing choices. Bottom line...obey the landing protocols, never stop watching for other pilots and stay on your own side of the lz. Thank you.

So...we have two wings, at about the same altitude, on final leg, in what seems to be a 60 degree (give or take) colliding heading. Which wing was landing cross wind and which was into the wind? Also, from a safety standpoint, does the HG/PG distinction actually matter? We should avoid all collisions. Such a situation can be encountered by two HGs absolutely just as easily - and in this case the protocol would not help. Sufficient situational awareness would help in all scenarios/combinations.

While on the topic, it is fascinating to note the approach diagram/protocol for HGs and PG's doesn't account for wind direction. And yet, strangely enough, wind direction should be a top priority in affecting any approach shape. Thoughts/comments?




Any pilot above H2/P2 should be able to safely land on AJX in up to a 90° crosswind. Therefore, when multiple gliders with different glide polars are converging upon the LZ everyone should be coming in reasonably close to parallel with one another. Vanity events such as trying to land on a cone or performing a no-stepper should be discarded and group safety take precedence.

Since I did not see this event it might be helpful if someone posted a diagram of the two glider's trajectories along with anything else relevant.

"Any pilot above H2/P2 should be able to safely land on AJX in up to a 90° crosswind".

So, does this hold just as true for a 6mph cross-wind as it would for a 16mph cross-wind? I see direction but not wind speed considered here.

"Everyone should be coming in reasonably close to parallel with one another"

Agreed that everyone's finals for any point in time should essentially be parallel. A T-bone collision between final legs strikes me as bizarre, unless maybe the two pilots are looking at different indicators in the middle of the day and\or, worst yet, unaware of each other's position & general state.



It's true for any velocity below a glider's minimum controllable airspeed. As wind speed increases a glider's crab angle relative to the ground will increase but its ground speed will decrease. As wind speed decreases the crab angle disappears and ground speed increases. But the wind itself becomes less and less relevant since reduction of ground speed diminishes. Landing into the wind is a convenience but is not a necessity. Avoiding obstacles whether fixed or flying is a necessity. Pilots at AJX become spoiled by the ease of approach from any an all directions. Other flying sites don't have that luxury and in many cases are tree slots filled with lee-side eddy and tree rotor.

There is no shame in doing a moon walk or even running if necessary in order to manage a crosswind landing whether on PG or HG. What is essential is that all pilots scan their surrounding before setting up their approaches to see whether there are other gliders converging. It's not always easy to spot other gliders. This is especially true since far too few gliders use standardized pattern setups where they can be seen spiraling down near what should be the upwind end of their downwind leg.

Instead what we have are gliders setting up wherever they feel like it or gliders trying to make low saves in what should be the landing staging areas. The result is a lot of confusion and many times pilots who point the finger of blame at others are the same pilots who fail to adhere to a predictable and organized landing staging and patterns. I am not implying that this is the case in this instance this is in fact the case in far too many instances.

At a minimum pilots need to be both visible and predictable. Make ourselves and our intentions obvious and all goes with far fewer incidents.