|Catherine and Peter of Naburn Lock Caravan Park once again played hosts for the September PRBA meet over the weekend of the 18th to the 20th.
Earlier in the preceding week the weather gave a hint that it could be pretty much spot-on for a change, and indeed it was, at around 90%, but that's fine by us following many of the previous meets with the weather being a bit naughty.
Friday threw a rain shower right on top of briefing, but then the clouds cleared leaving a fabulous evening for some of the pilots to be tempted to fly. Off they went towards Stillingfleet but none managed to splash and dash in the river.
Saturday morning briefing was interrupted with a round of happy birthday for Malc Skilbeck (28 again!) and the forecast was absolutely 100% perfect; beautiful, L&V winds, good vis and the stunning scenery tempted everyone into the air, including Damian Torrington off on his solo flight - successfully passed too - so well done Damian, now get those exams done! We flew towards Escrick and it has to rank as one of those magical and calm flights to remember. Emma Briggs had a professional press photographer with her as passenger and we have some stunning photographs to show for it, thank you Emma for flying Charlotte, and thank you Charlotte for your excellent handiwork.
Saturday afternoon some of us ventured off to the York Brewery for an interesting afternoon, and then back to Naburn for a spot of more flying. The rain clouds threatened to spoil the fun though, doing something similar to the previous evening; heavy black clouds passing overhead, and pass they did, thankfully, so again the flying was a little delayed, the pilots included 13 year-old Emily Read - another 19th September baby, so another happy birthday!
On to Sunday morning and the mist cloaked the ground so a leisurely start to the day, eventually seeing a whole host of beautiful colours fading in and out of the mist. The pilots were definitely in light and variable winds as they criss-crossed overhead. Alex Smith actually completing a box for the second time this year - top retrieve by yours truly, waiting in the field as they landed, all of 30m away from where they had taken off! Team Russon saved the best for last with a great splash and dash in Naburn Lock to claim the trophy.
Trophy time - obviously the diver's helmet going again to John Russon, ably assisted this time by 'hostess with the mostest' in the basket; air stewardess Pam Wass! (Any in-flight catering Pam?!) Well done John, now get your hand in your pocket to get it engraved with your wins for this year and last year....oh and a splash out on a bit of metal polish too!
The quiz was won by Linda Crossland Clarke, and a special prize to Damian Torrington (knowing that once checked out, pilots forget how to read a map....) of a compass (to help with his direction) and a spirit level (to prove he can fly level) all for successfully completing his solo.
Thank you people of the Pennine Region Balloon Association and friends, it was one well worth waiting for.
Oh, and don't forget to check out Charlotte's photography. (Charlotte Graham Photography).
Header Photo - (Lisa Russon) Did John throw in a box of soap powder for a wash and go?!
Photos below courtesy of Robin Shevills, Lisa Russon, Terry's Friend, Andrew Davis and others. Thank you. Scroll through, there are lots!