1 =========== Milton Hare *AT* Williams, CA
I depend on BLIPMAP more than any other forecasting tool.
3 =========== ---------- *AT* Chicago GLider, IL
Would look at multiple times if available for N illinois! We often fly in little slices of good weather, so timing is important. For example, identifying the rare day you can stay up at 10 am vs. the usual 12:30 is the key to long flights. Knowing if it will go blue toward the end of the day, and if so were is also key. Larger detail would help, and help forecasting lake michigan effects. Thanks for doing the blipmap! Blipmap plus FSL sounding is pretty much a daily routine during the season. Even if I can't go out, I like to correlate the forecast and the look of the sky on a daily basis.
They have been available since Sept.
7 =========== Charles S Thaeler, III *AT* Minden, NV
I did the WX for HCS's Ely camp this summer using the Blipmaps extensively. EVERYONE used and enjoyed them. EXCELLENT product.
10 =========== James C. Garrison *AT* Front Royal, VA
I have used the ETA-40 model for about 2-3 years and the BLIPMAP is an extension of that concept. I like it -- although for the Va area, it seems a bit optimistic
11 =========== Gary Evans *AT* Estrella Sailport, Phoenix, AZ
I'm retired and therefore do not take time away from work to fly. I fly at a sailport which is primarily training hence the low BLIPMAP usage. I would guess that the majority of serious local pilots use it.
13 =========== ---------- *AT* Hobbs, NM
We are retired and one of us will fly almost all decent looking spring/summer days. Primary reasons not to fly are mostly high winds and overcas cirrus. Likewise, with lower performance gliders, our choices of direction are a bit limited here.
14 =========== ---------- *AT*
upper-air analysis is one of my interests
16 =========== Todd Herzog *AT* ADG (Adrian, MI)
During the season, look at in AM and again in PM to get and outlook for tomorrow. Even on non-flying days, I will look at blipmaps and then check FAA Wx and FSL soundings to compare blipmaps to what is happening out the window.
17 =========== ---------- *AT* TSA Midlothian, TX
percentage of pilots at my soaring site now using BLIPMAP forecasts is an estimate.
19 =========== Mark G. Forbes *AT* Corvallis, OR
I'm just a weekend pilot, but I look at BLIPMAP to help understand what I see outside, and to better correlate sky appearance with soaring conditions. I'm a hang glider/paraglider pilot, BTW.
22 =========== Bill Richardson *AT* Warner Springs, CA
I usually only look at the peak of the day because I try to takeoff early and have conditions improve on my x-c attempts.
24 =========== Jonathan Gere *AT* Fairfield, PA
No internet access at gliderport. My impression: RUC (hence blipmap) seems to change drastically with shortening forecast duration and gets really good at about 6 hrs compared to 9 or 12. Hence one last look Sat AM before drive to airport. Good thing it is close to home. I don't trust weather forecasts enough to not go on account of them.
25 =========== Karl Striedieck *AT* University Park, PA
Being retired and having a launch pad in the back yard, weather forecasts are not as critical. However, if I were a weekend warrior or remote from the aerodrome this service would be essential to my decision to fly.
26 =========== Michael Newman *AT* Sugarbush, Warren, VT (0B7) also Sterling, MA (3B3)
I usually look at the soundings directly for true insight and the BLIPMAP for an overview. I link to both on my weather page: www.dragonnorth.com/weather
27 =========== Rick Hernan *AT* Youngsville, PA
Sometimes, only the 18/21Z times are available when I head to the airport. It would be helpful if the rest of the times were available earlier in the day.
32 =========== ---------- *AT* Menomonie, WI
Sometimes BLIPMAPS are not available. I always check them every day, and compare them to other wx info. I cannot reschedule work on short notice. My default is to fly on all days off if possible; BLIPMAPS can only dissuade me.
38 =========== Martin Hellman *AT* Hayward, CA
The only times I don't consult BLIPMAP when I am flying is when I do not have access to a computer -- typically when I'm on a multiday trip. Sometimes then I call a friend (often Milt Hare) and have him look at it for me. I am the only glider at my "soaring site" (HWD), so that gives 100% use of BLIPMAP.
39 =========== Tom Saunders *AT* Blairstown, NJ 1N7
Jack - would love to see you do the ETA longer range forecast.
40 =========== ---------- *AT* Boulder, CO
At end of 02 season I was still trying to correlate observed conditions with blipmap predictions. Chief use of blipmap on Colorado front range has been to determine (a) whether to fly in the mountains or on the plains and (b) if in the mountains whether to choose a generally Northerly or Southerly task.
41 =========== ---------- *AT* hemet, CA and driggs, ID
I use multiple sources, including the GOES graphics at http://orbit-net.nesdis.noaa.gov/goes/soundings/skewt/html/skewtus.html. My experience says that BLIPMAPS are most reliable, but I like some degree of confirmation. Have not asked many fellow pilots about BLIPMAPS.
42 =========== Ray Williams *AT* Mountain Valley Apt. Tehachapi, CA
My limited computer skills create problems if the local web site is having difficulties. down load speed is restricted to 26,000 and normally only 23 to 25bps This morning 26400 is record setting. Week days I have DSL and try to download on Friday in my office time permitting.
44 =========== Monroe S. David *AT* Cherry Valley, AR
I use it all the time for not only soaring predictions but also for general weather predictions in a specific area.
45 =========== Chris Ruf *AT* LaGrange, GA and Benton/Chattanooga, TN
Sometimes use blipmaps to help me decide which gliderport to go to - knowing which direction: 1.5 hrs drive to the south or 2 hrs drive to the north will be better. As good as any forecast is, many times I go despite a poor forecast and have had some amazing days because of this. I have found the Blipmaps to be a good tool to determine direction of flights - more important than whether to go or not. I would have used blipmaps more at contest but most contest mornings are too rushed to allow me to go online and internet access from many gliding sites is poor.
46 =========== Gale Winnett *AT* Marion Municipal Airport, Marion, OH
I am retired with a very supportive wife, so if it is a good soaring day, that's what I do. We used the BLIPMAPS this year at our "Fall Round-UP" and they provided very good information.
48 =========== David Piotrowski *AT* Wurtsboro, NY
I guess I didn't understand how to look at different times of day..!
51 =========== George Morford *AT* Mission Peak, Fremont, CA
I use the BLIPs rather than the BLIPMAPs, due to the limited speed and limited flight range of my para glider (or the limited skill of the pilot). The BLIPMAP graphic is too coarse to be usefull.
53 =========== Terence Honikman *AT* Santa Barbara, CA
My Stemme is the only glider at Santa Barbara airport - hence the 100% answer above. Closest glider port is Santa Ynez - I have distributed Blipmaps to many in that group, but have no information about their use patterns.
54 =========== Mario Crosina *AT* Avenal, CA
I will be using the BLIPMAPS for the 1st time this year.
56 =========== J Meier *AT* Mancos, CO
Forecasts in the Rockies are tough due to mountain local weather patterns. Blipmaps seem to take into account at least some of the orographics for lift prediction.
59 =========== Frank Peel *AT* Fremont, CA
As an avid pilot who didn't work during 2002 I have used the BLIPMAPs almost daily for the entire year. Though my flying is done primarily in the San Francisco Bay Area, sites in Oregon were also flown. I have also used BLIPMAPs before flying in a two-place sailplane out of Hollister, CA, and Truckee, CA.
62 =========== Matt Gillis *AT* Hollister, CA; Truckee, CA
I use the BLIPMAPS as the final assessment of forcasting soaring conditions. I use it in conjunction with FSL-MAPS which give me a forcast further out and a profile of the atmosphere at strategic locations at various times. In post: On cloud days, I compare BLIPMAP to Visible SAT pics for qualitative correlation and/or flight reports. I also compare it with other forcasting tools, particularily the longer range ones, to see if my guesses were correct, at least with regards to the BLIPMAP output, if not my own flights or flight reports. As with most tools I'm looking for empirical indicators as that will give me a lead on GO/NoGO for Soaring; i.e., mental and physical preparation, as well as optimized scheduling.
69 =========== ---------- *AT* Crestline, CA
I use primarily to compare with FSL plots and convergence tracking east of sierras to spot daily trends and to spot OD.
71 =========== ---------- *AT* Manquin Flight Park, Manquin, VA
My sense of this section is to discover whether pilots are using BLIPMAPs to make 'go flying' decisions. My survey answers show little or no reliance on your product but that/s b/c I do not solely rely on your product to evaluate soaring conditions. By the time I look at your charts, I have already analyzed forecast soundings from the Eta and AVN for vertical wind profiles, estimates of TIs and Qbase, and the potential for higher clouds. BLIPMAPs are usually in good agreement wrt TIs. What I find most informative is the grahical distribution of these values. I tend to only look at 18z values b/c of my slow Internet connection and b/c I do not fly XC.
72 =========== Colin J Barry *AT* Boulder, CO
I indicate that 50% of the pilots at my site use BLIPMAP, this refers to the percentage of active xc pilots. Also I indicate that the number of days I cancelled a days flying beacuse of BLIPMAP is zero. This is beacuse I make my mind up first about the conditions and then use BLIPMAP to confirm my ideas.
74 =========== ---------- *AT* Warner Springs, CA
When on safari I have not had internet access. We have used it on local soaring days and find it more accurate then the local soaring forecast. For future flights it is helping give consideration to possible routes and areas that may need to be avoided.
76 =========== Lach Ohman *AT* Kendallville, IN
I sold my Libelle two years ago at age 75, after owning and flying it for 24 years. Had an open Cirrus before that. Have flown very little since discovering BLIPMAPS, but, for the younger guys following me I can see them as a great help, being current, easlily accessible, and applying to the area in which we are flying, and furnisning information directly relevant to our flight. Thanks for making them available to us.
79 =========== Jim Rooney *AT* Sacramento, PA
Due to my schedule, I can't always check blipmap the morning I'm going to be flying. I've been watching it after flying and comparing it to my experiences that day. When I stay at flightparks though, I always check in the morning.
81 =========== ---------- *AT* Rideau Valley Airpark, Kars, ONT, Canada
I am retired thus able to fly most days of the week. Our club flies on an ad-hoc basis on week days and the regular use of Blipmaps by many of our members has created the demand for activity on promising days.
86 =========== ---------- *AT* Blairstown, NJ
I am semi-retired and can fly most days.
87 =========== John Earlywine *AT* Kendallville, IN
I need to spend more time learning how to use more effectively.
88 =========== ---------- *AT* Crazy Creek, CA
The 80% for the percentage of flights used after knowing about them is only because it took me a while to get comfortable with them - it's now 100% I didn't take any days off based on the maps because I was unemployed. It still caused me to go flying a few times when I wouldn't have otherwise thought abuot it. Also, if I had been working, I probably would have tried to take a day or two off.
90 =========== ---------- *AT* Williams, CA
1. I Look at the BLIPMAP almost daily-usually at work. Even knowing that there's no chance of me making it to the gliderport, I find the BLIPMAP very intriguing and even entertaining to look at. 2. I'm a weekend flyer. I don't have the luxury of selecting only the good days to fly. If I can, I go. 3. I played hooky from work one day last spring due to a favorable(and of course, acurate) BLIP forecast. THANKS!
95 =========== Charles H. Leu *AT* Air Sailing, Warm Springs, NV
This year's schedule didn't permit any flying outside of weekends. When my priorities get back to soaring/recreation, then I'll consult wx predictions to determine which days are good candidates for taking time off for flying. Many thanks for your contributions Dr J.
99 =========== Jim Hays *AT* Airsailing, NV
I am retired, therefore I never use blipmap to get off work. I basically plan to soar everyday, and use blipmap to determine where, and to formulate an initial impression for altitude bands. It is marvelous.
101 =========== Tom Hubbard *AT* Hollister, CA
Check BLIPMAP before flying on any day. How aggressive I plan to fly is based on the the BLIPMAPs and also the TIPS.
105 =========== ---------- *AT* Kelly Airpark/Elbert, CO
I'm a relatively inexperienced glider pilot, so my interests this past season were mostly whether or not there would be sufficient thermal lift to stay up. I've purchased my own ship now and hope to start doing X-country next season. I'll be learning more about weather forecasts and learning how to use the BLIPMAP predictions.
106 =========== ---------- *AT* hutchinson, KS
The flying in Kansas seldom goes into Nebraska. In fact on only one day of the year, regardless of weather or the forecast, does anybody consider going into Nebraska. For that reason, I would like to see Kansas included with areas to the South. The part of Colorado on this map is adequate for going West. We just don't go East or North.
109 =========== ---------- *AT* Great Western, LLano, CA
Difficult to determine map outlines and other geographical landmarks.
110 =========== Bob Lacovara *AT* Philadelphia Glider Council - Hilltown, PA
Multiple time forecasts when available
111 =========== ---------- *AT* Canon City, CO
Colorado is very unpredicatable, so I tend to try to pick the better fo either Sat/Sun. By the ime I get BlipMap info, I've commited to the day. I use it to determine what type of day it's going to be and which way to plan my flight.
112 =========== Marvin Holland *AT* Cumberland, MD
Proved to be more accurate than Flight Service soaring forecast
115 =========== Burt Compton *AT* Marfa Airport (MRF) west, TX
I operate Marfa Gliders. Many folks bring their gliders from far away to soar here and earn badges, set records and fly "personal best" cross country flights.
116 =========== ---------- *AT* P15
Blipmap use is constrained by student status and product available for the northeast.
124 =========== ---------- *AT* Turf, AZ
I have just discovered this great tool. It has been used extensively by a few of the X-country pilots flying from Turf with very accurate results.
128 =========== Dave Rolley *AT* Kelly Airpark, Elbert, CO
My soaring site does not support weekday flying. The 100% estimate is of the cross country pilots. The helpfulness of BLIPMAP to me is limited because I seldom get more than 2 weekends per month to fly and basically have to relearn the system each time. Which means my usage is probably sub optimized.
133 =========== ---------- *AT* Alamogordo, NM
Two or three days straight before a long flight.
135 =========== Harry Fox *AT* Hollister, CA ; Truckee, NV
Most of the time I just look at the 21Z forecasts. I look at BLIPMAPs and BLIPs regularly on days I do not plan to fly, to get a feel for what types of weather patterns produce good soaring conditions. This has improved my ability to plan ahead a few days.
136 =========== Clay J Thomas *AT* Black Forest Soaring Society Elbert, CO
In order of importance, thermal updraft velocity,wind speed, wind direction, BL convergence, rel hum max, O.D. potential, Cape. I only look at last two if there is enough available moisture to be concerned.
137 =========== ---------- *AT* Hinckley, IL
I am the unofficial weather guy for our group so I do look at BLIPMAP every morning as well as use Doug Bell's SOARCAST program. I also DUAT for area WX and NOTAMS.
142 =========== Bob Semans *AT* Minden-Tahoe Airport, NV
As I am retired, I fly any day the weather is very good for cross country or record attempts ... so the questions regarding weekends verses weekdays don't seem relevant. I live about 8 miles from my tie-downs so the decision to make a long drive to a soaring site based on a 48 hour, or more, forecast isn't a consideration for me. In assessing the day's weather, I spend about 30 minutes, starting about 7:15 am, looking at about ten weather web pages plus BLIPMAPS. If I decide to make an attempt I leave home for the airport about 9:00 am and have no easy access to the web after that. The Minden Soaring Club would like to make systems available at the soaring FBOs so late weather updates are easier. I started looking at BLIPMAPA about 2/3 of the way through the season. The experience from this past season is significantly skewed because of the extraordinarily long periods of smoke influence from at least 12 fires.
143 =========== Doug Gray *AT* Truckee, Hollister, CA and Air Sailing, NV
Few pilots at Air Sailing use BLIPMAPs because of poor phone links.
145 =========== Dean Chantiles *AT* Warner Springs, CA
Learned about Blipmap after reading article in Soaring magazine. Now I check NOAA soaring forecast and Blipmap before heading to airport. In my limited experience(since mid-summer), Blipmap much more accurate. NOAA forecast sometimes wildly optimistic on thermal tops.
148 =========== ---------- *AT* Front Royal, VA (Skyline Soaring Club)
I would really like to see forecasts for multiple times of the day (every three hours).
They are available now.
151 =========== ---------- *AT* KTYQ Zionasville, IN
BLIPMAP is great!
152 =========== Mike Koerner *AT* Crystalaire, CA
My usage would be much higher than 50% if longer range forecasts were available. I fly out of Crystal most every summer saturday. I leave Friday evening. Often the bitmaps are not avaiable before I leave. I do not have a mobile internet connection.
155 =========== Tony Smolder *AT* Turf - Peoria, AZ
Starting to use BLIPMAP toward the end of the 2002 season. Will use extensively in 2003 for task planning.
158 =========== Mark Kowalsky *AT* Teviotdale, ONT, Canada
you can get multiple times of the day?
159 =========== James L Lamb *AT* Whitewater, WI
I try to watch on an ongoing basis so as to give comparison and anticipation to actual/observed weather.
161 =========== Dale Kramer *AT* Harris Hill, NY
I am a very active contest and cross country pilot. I flew for Canada in the Worlds in South Africa and will fly in Leszno. I was the first person to ever fly a 750 FAI triangle in NY state and accomplished this in 2002. This flight broke 14 state records. You have revolutionized the way I plan my soaring flights. Blipmaps are the only weather information I used this year and are most important when planning BIG flights. To me, the main benefits of Blipmaps are NOT to get me to fly on days when I would not have flown. I do not fly on marginal days much any more although I know I should (I get enough of them at contests). All my flying is either contest or record attempts. It is relatively easy to determine a good day from an average day with 'normal' soaring forecasting techniques. Your presentaion has provided all the info I need over a large area AT A GLANCE. You present information that used to take hours to assemble from many tephi's and sources. You have saved me countless hours of flight preparation and have provided much more accurate, consistent and detailed weather analysis than I did before. You should be (and I predict 'will be') in the Soaring Hall of Fame for implementing this revolutionary method of soaring forecasts.
162 =========== ---------- *AT* Salida, CO
Didn't know how to use the multiple times of day feature last year, will learn it this year: how early to start in a day.
164 =========== ---------- *AT* MEV Minden, NV
I read the article in "Soaring" then checked out the web site several times during the summer of '02. Impressive, but I don't have a lot of experience with BLIPMAP yet. Keep up the good work. I hope to be able to use it during '03...
165 =========== ---------- *AT* Crazy Creek (Middletown) CA
I only fly weekdays, but have re arranged meetings with clients to take advantage of the Blipmap. I really don't task plan with it because I have not flown cross country yet.
167 =========== Walter Rogers *AT* California City, CA
My low use of BLIPMAP should be obvious. I use my own weather forecasting skills. I have access to many other sources and my own experience. BLIPMAP confirms my own estimates, however.
169 =========== Chris Cioffi *AT* Manquin Flight Park, Richmond, VA
Generally by the time I can get to the BlipMap data, it is too late to not go to work. :( However, on a weekend day if I can fly I generally will even if the forecast isn't very good.