Me, polishing the tail before takeoff. Photo by Chris Strong for the Booth alumni magazine
Ok you’re not really a glider pilot, but this looks like a nice break from asset pricing and macroeconomics, doesn't it? Go to the SSA (Soaring Society of America) web page to see what gliders look like and where you can try it. If you go out to an airport, say “trial lesson” and make them put you in front. Don’t say “ride” or they’ll treat you like a tourist, stuff you in back and charge you too much.
The Life to the max show video is a nice introduction to what gliding is about. More advanced flying Videos (youtube links): Aerobatics over the Alps; Soaring in Chile (grand prix footage)
I fly at the Chicago Glider club, which is located southwest of Joliet.
More pictures (at the bottom of this page)
Northern Illinois contest (NISC)
Soaring forecasts for northern Illinois.
NISC rules for 2014.
(No changes 2014. Read the rules! )
Rules crib sheet (thanks to John DeRosa)
The worldwide soaring turnpoint exchange has the turnpoint and landpoint database for NISC.
2014 NISC results (pdf format); results in excel format.
2013 NISC results (text format); results in excel format.
2012 NISC results (text format); results in excel format.
2012 Sky soaring mini-contest scoresheets: FAI class, Sports (PW5) class. Zip file of flight logs
2011 NISC results (text format); results in excel format.
2010 NISC results (text format); results in excel format..
2009 NISC results (mht format); results in excel format.
2008 NISC results; results in excel format.
2007 NISC results
Some long tasks using Northern Illinois turnpoints.
Illinois Soaring forecast links. My weekend morning forecast ritual
- MacCready Theory in Wave.
How to apply MacCready theory in wave. Fly faster.
- Safety glides. (Later published in Soaring) February 27 2012 How to use your glide computer for safety glides. Don't use Mc 0 and expect to get home. The square root rule, and more. Slightly expanded version with metric units: (pdf) or (doc) (August 2012)
- Deviations Part I Sept 2011. (Later published in Soaring) How far off course should you go to chase that juicy cloud? The MacCready theory of course deviations. (Part I is the case with no wind. Part II with wind on the way.) This version includes the algebra appendix for masochists.
- Just a little Faster Please Jan 2007. Condensed and rewrote the article for publication in Germany. This version is better, except the numbers are all m/s and km. Slovenian translation. German version.
- Just a Little Faster Please July 2000. Article for Soaring Magazine on applying new MacCready theory.
- Upwind and downwind The theory of upwind and downwind turnpoints. Oct 2006 (Also a "contest corner"
- "MacCready Theory with Uncertain Lift and Limited Altitude" Technical Soaring 23 (3) (July 1999) 88-96. This version cleans up some typos that crept into the published version. Acrobat 3.0 pdf file Programs contains matlab and gauss programs for making the calculations.
- NOTE: Robert Almgren wrote this very nice and mathematically much better version of the theory. Even if you don't like equations, skip to Figure 4.1 and 4.2 which are full of insights.
- "The start time game in competition soaring" Technical Soaring 22 (2) (April 1998) 56-64 . This article analyzes when to start early, when to start late, when a big gaggle will form, and so on. Acrobat 3.0 pdf file.
- Notes for talk given at the Midwest mini-convention, Feb 2000 MS-Word doc file. Same general stuff as in "Just a little faster please"
- 2013 Contest safety review. Reviews 2013 contest accidents. Another bad year for absurdly low-altitude thermaling.
- A radio revolution?Soaring 77 (2) February 2013 24-25. Pilot to pilot communication will be allowed at regionals this year. Some thoughts on how to use this innovation productively.
- 2012 US contest safety review. Reviews 2012 contest accidents, and recommends changes to try to address them. It's been a bad year for low-altitude maneuvering.
- You Will Be Tempted. A Safety Talk at Uvalde 2011 turned into a short article for Gliding Australia 2012. A little safety psychology for contest pilots. Old issues, new package. Thanks to Bruce and Anita Taylor for getting me to write it up, publishing it, and sending me a scan.
- 2011 US contest safety review.
- Safer Finishes Soaring Magazine article, arguing for a high finish gate or "hard deck" and no rolling finishes to reduce accidents on and near the home airport. Draft if you have problems with the published version.
- Contest Safety Feb 2002 Power point slides for presentation at 2002 convention. Where are the accidents, what can you do to avoid them, and what can rules do to make contests safer.
- Plea for the 500 foot rule. Message to r.a.s. Sept 2003 on the high finish
- Added time FAQ. A short and less technical explanation of the 15 minute time addition, with a response to frequently asked questions from the spring 2003 r.a.s. debate.
- Time for distance Draft of a Soaring magazine article to explain a scoring improvement for turn area tasks. (ms doc file)
- Forecasting and interpreting the weather. Powerpoint or pdf. Slides for my talk at the Chicagoland Glider Council 2013 Midwest Spring Soaring & Safety Seminar, February 16 2013
- The National Contest Participation Dilemma Soaring 76 32-36 June 2012. Documents the decline in participation at nationals and explores some causes and potential solutions. Pilots churn through the sport and do not cross the Mississippi.
- Comment on Classes. Glding International March-April 2012 The IGC, and proliferating classes. Some overlap here with "classes and rules" below, but a more condensed set of thoughts on classes. Bottom line: too many!
- Logan 2011 -- A more Sympathetic View Soaring Cafe August 2011. My view of the 2011 Logan 15 meter contest. A nice place to fly, but still a challenging mountain site.
- Gizmo Future. Soaring Magainze July 2011. Thoughts on the future of technology in soaring.
- The Future of Contest Soaring: Classes and Rules May 2011. English version of "Die Zukunft des Segelflugwettbewerbs: Teil 1: Viele Flugzeugklassen" in the May Segelfliegen to be followed by "und Regeln." Thanks to Herb Kilian for translation, with some help from Robert Norton.
- The Evolution of U.S. Contest Soaring. Ralph S. Barnaby lecture, October 4, 2010. Well, that was what I was supposed to talk about; it ended up as John's view of just about everything in contest soaring. Gizmo and Future above are outgrowths of this larger effort.
- Views on Tonopah A sidebar to accompany the Soaring Magazine coverage of the 2002 15 meter nationals at Tonopah (ms doc file)
- Newcastle fields. Powerpoint drawings from ground tours of fields around NCI.
- "Decisions at Littlefield" July 2000. Draft of a sidebar to the 2000 Standard nationals for Soaring Magazine.
Since Feb 2006 I have been writing the “contest corner” column for Soaring Magazine.
Here’s a list of topics I have in mind for future columns. Feel free to suggest other topics or to let me know which of these you want to hear sooner rather than later.
Here are drafts of upcoming columns and repository of old columns.
- Invitation to contests. Feb 2006
- Local contests. April 2006
- Contest Finishes. It’s a “how-to” article, with no ranting and raving about rules. June 2006
- Sports class growing pains. Handicaps, team selection and more. August 2006
- Upwind and downwind The theory of upwind and downwind turnpoints. Oct 2006
- Circling in Psychological Sink Musings on how to produce a contest-winning attitude. Dec 2006
- Thermal Detectors Feb 2007
- Distance Rules Explains the new scoring formulas that give more distance points. April 2007
- Goodbye Rolling Finish Feb 2008. Explains the new finish penalty that replaces rolling finishes under a finish cylinder.
- Start anywhere March 2008. Explains the new start procedure, with some things to watch for.
- MAT strategy July 2008. Some unconventional ideas on MAT strategy. Up/down wind vs. cross-wind; playing the upwind-low game; keeping options open.
- Fun With MAT December 2009. The “Long MAT” as an alternative to the AST, and some other ideas on fun tasks using MAT rules. Let’s break out of the rut!
- Flarm August 2010. A report of my experience with Flarm at the worlds, and thoughts about getting it going in the US. Video (wmv format) showing what the Parowan midair would have looked like if the pilots had flarm. (Courtesy Lee Kuhlke)
- Rules 2011. April 2011. Summary of important rules and procedures changes for 2011. Mixed regionals, Flarm, Critical safety checklist, and more.
- Critical Contest Safety Procedures Checklist January 2011
Karl Striedieck classics
These are most of Karl’s “contest corner” articles. They are copyright © Karl Striedieck, so check with him before republishing or reproducing. Dates are my best guesses based on the Soaring Magazine index
The US Team and the Rules December 2003
Tweaking the TAT November 2002
User Friendly Contests December 2000
World View Jan 2001
A Better Sniffer August 2002
Bridging the Gap Feburary 2003
Club/Sports issues October 2000
The SRA December 2001
Contest Fees June 2004
Crewless Pilots December 1999
Going it Alone (more crewless pilots, not how Karl wins contests without leeching.)
GPS flight recorders
GPS starts I August 1999
GPS starts II July 2001
H2woe November 2004
MAT Rules report May 1999
Mommy, where do rules come from March 2000
Odds and ends May 2003
Rules Complication August 2000
Tasking October 2002
The CD June 2002
The Scoring Program
The Troops February 2004
The Turn Area Task
Ready for takeoff at Albert Lea 18m nationals. Photo by Paul Remde.
Finish, Nationals at Hobbs
Landing at Ephrata 20009 18m nationals