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Isabelle Burr at YSDC 2017


Gliding Club: Auckland aviation sports club

Hours: 60

I was lucky enough to spend the first two weeks of my school holidays in Omarama for the 10-day YSDC, with over 30 other pilots and instructors. The camp included many firsts for me, first time flying in the South Island, first cross-country flight, first flight on oxygen, first flight in wave and the list could go on. It will be hard to forget seeing Mt Cook, while at 18,000ft from the rear cockpit of an ASH-25 (thanks Doug!).

On the other side of the scale, I will never forget the feeling of sitting above Mt. Horrible for 5 hours straight in an LS4. I don’t think I had ever been so pleased to see the ground before as I was after that flight! Thank you to Clive Geddes, Budd Pratt and Phil Penny for letting me fly MT during the camp, it made the 5 hours more bearable having a nice glider to fly.

My happiest moment of the course would have to be finishing my QGP on the last day, just over 2 years after my first flight with the air training corps at Whenuapai. Thank you so much to Trevor Mollard and Ray Burns for helping me finish that during the course, as well as all the help back home.

The last highlight for the camp I’ll mention has got to be the food. If it wasn’t for the campground setting I would’ve believed I was in a fancy city restaurant, with spit roast lamb and salmon making up part of our dinners. Kim and her team of volunteers served many delicious meals through the camp and I’d come back next year just for that. Another thanks to the tow pilots, instructors, support crew, sponsors and gliding clubs for their time, aircraft lent and support, and of course most of all, thank you Roger and Kim Read for putting together such an amazing camp!


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