May 19, 2015
Oetz to the Solden Pass
A short break in the weather to the SW of us sent us on an early morning drive to the Innsbruck Valley. Perhaps today I could fly to Italy? I didn't really feel like hiking up (gasp!), so we managed to drive the motorhome all the way up to an official launching area above Oetz. Several tandems went off before me but otherwise the hillside was quiet.
It was a weak day, and I launched right at noon. Perhaps a bit too early, as my first move almost put me on the ground. The valley winds were kicking, and without a sunny hillside it looked like a cow pasture for me. I managed to find a bump of a hill directly into the wind, and I soared it, first in desperation and then just for fun. I had resigned myself to landing and thought I would just fly until I saw the motorhome heading my way.
However, I kept inching higher...inching being the right word as it took me about an hour to climb out of that hole. But climb out I did! Then it was just a matter of riding the winds south toward the high pass leading over to Italy. Jim could hardly keep up with me at times, I was flying almost 60km an hour!
The road up to the pass was definitely closed, so luckily I didn't try to fly over it with Jim unable to chase me! Plus, we didn't have SIM cards for Italy yet so we wouldn't be able to communicate once crossing the border (argh).
There were tons of waterfalls and the scenery was gorgeous. The towns were almost deserted on the drive back though, since the pass is closed until more snow melts.
Tomorrow we are heading back north for hopefully another day or two of flying before the rain sets in again.
Here's my track log on XContest, about 42k long: http://www.xcontest.org/world/en/flights/detail:westrumd/17.5.2015/10:17