Flying for Badges at LKSC.
Flying for badges is a great discipline and gives you something to aim for in a form all glider pilots will understand… well most of it. There's no need to tell anyone from less fortunate climates about 10 knot thermals to 9,000' and acres of good outlanding paddocks, it's best to make it sound tough!
A badge can be just a personal goal or it can be a useful qualification for overseas flying but whatever your reason for flying for badges, Lake Keepit is a great place to fly them.The main reason for this is that the club is in a region which has great weather through spring, summer and autumn and good weather winter when many other sites shut down. Keepit is also a 365 day a year gliding club which means you can fly when you want to and the weather conditions are perfect for a badge flight.
So we may not get the few scorching 1000 km days that the clubs further south get for a few weeks in summer, but we do get many, many days a year when you can fly 250 - 500 km with cloud bases between 6,000 and 13,000'. And since most of the country around Keepit is around 1000 above sea level, it means that almost all this height is flyable.
Starting with the basics, the requirements of the Silver C badge can be achieved on a single day at Lake Keepit through most of the year. Even in the winter months, 250km is not too difficult on most days. For any badge, staying up for 5 hours is mostly a test of stamina rather than a test of the conditions. With a normal launch to 2000' and typical cloud bases of 9.000+, the height component is not too hard, so it is just a matter of the distance!
There are several tasks with the required 50 kilometre leg from LKSC which never leave you outside gliding range of club. Of course you can fly in a straight line and outland somewhere just to prove you did it! There are several FAI triangles using well known turn points, which on a typical day never take you more than a couple of thermals beyond gliding distance of the club strip and which have a good airstrip at each turn point.
In fact it might be better to look at something more challenging to start with!
If you are interested in doing some badge flying, contact the club and ask for the task list and turn point coordinates… get yourself a map and start planning!