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Visting Pilot

Ridge Soaring

Make all reversing turns away from the ridge, into the wind.



Gliders approaching each other head-on give way to the right. When passing right, the northbound glider, regardless of relative altitude, should give way by moving in towards the cliff a safe distance. The southbound pilot should give way by moving seaward enough to clear the other glider by at least one-half a glider wingspan horizontally. This passing clearance is to reduce the maximum effect of wake turbulence, as a courtesy, and to reduce the danger to the northbound pilot when both pilots are close to the terrain in marginal lift.
The traffic pattern will be defined as an elongated figure-8, as shown above. At the ends of the pattern, marked (a) and (b), the pilot will turn toward the ocean (away from the cliff). At (c), Pilots 1 and 2, meeting head on, will pass to the right of one another. At (d), if there is room for Pilot 2 to safely move in behind Pilot 3, then Pilot 2 will follow into the turn portion of the pattern. If there is not room to follow before Pilot 3 completes the turn, then Pilot 2 must pass to the right of Pilot 3.
A pilot overtaking a slower glider must pass on the inside between the slower glider and the ridge. This is to allow the other pilot turn away from the hill according to the standard traffic pattern. Pilots should always keep an eye on traffic behind them as well as in front of them.
A pilot may not fly close under or over another glider. This is especially true with gliders flying in the same direction, because the upper glider may be restricted by traffic or terrain and may be left with no choice but to descend. Also, as a courtesy, a pilot should avoid flying low and to the outside of a glider traveling in the same direction, because the upper glider will receive a steady stream of wake turbulence.

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Updated 7/14/2006