Day Due to South Winds (+0
With 59 miles knocked off yesterday, the birds are grounded by strong, warm south winds today. Yesterday they climbed eagerly in the cold air. Pilot Richard even saw one bird with its left foot tucked under its belly to keep warm! The cold air made flight more efficient, so the climb was easy. They leveled off at about 3,000 feet above sea level. Richard was relieved when the birds made it past "Don Quixote’s nightmare of 1,000 windmills passing below us, shadows of their blades chopping up the air and making the birds want to hide above the wing." When Richard began a long, slow descent about 15 mles from the goal the birds got interested in the thermals, rising columns of warm air upon which birds can soar glide without flapping their wings. More than once Richard had to gain altitude again to coax them to get back on his wing. Finally nine birds landed where they spotted Joe’s trike already on the ground. The tenth was female #6-10. She was still aloft with Richard, getting a nice ride by herself on currents close to his wing. (Go to her bio page to see why Richard called her an aerobatics queen during yesterday's flight!) Finally, Richard and #6 landed too. Despite efforts to get #2 to fly solo with Brooke and his plane, #2-10 wanted only to get back to the pen. Maybe a rest day isn't a bad idea!