About A470 Soaring


This is the blog for a few guys who spend their time flying radio controlled gliders, or slope soarer's, from the many and varied slopes around SE Wales.

This usually begins at the northern end of Cardiff, driving north up the A470 up to the Heads of the Valley's and the southern fringe of the Brecon Beacons. But the A470 road continues its windy way all the way to N Wales.

There are many slopes available for most wind directions, the most famous being the area between Nant-y-Moel and Treorchi known as The Bwlch, which has some of the best slopes and flying in Europe with many F3F competitions being held there each year and visited by many fliers from Europe and around the world. At 1500 feet (450m) above sea level, there is usually more wind than not, and certainly more than at sea level.

If you require any further information, are new to slope soaring or are visiting the area, please contact Steve at steve.houghton59@gmail.com . I look forward to hearing from you.

Take a look at Page 2 (look below and to the left here) for Google maps of our most popular Flying Sites.


Friday, 8 June 2018

Bwlchfest Flying Forecast

Hi guys. The weekend is upon us and it's looking like we'll be getting some flying in for Bwlchfest.

Both Saturday and Sunday are looking similar with a 8 - 9 mph ENE breeze, which will mean flying the Wrecker. This should give us 15 mph plus on the slope, and the Wrecker produces bags of lift. Saturday is looking cloudier so, as long as the cloud base isn't so low that we get clagged in, then we should be OK.

Sunday is looking like being a much sunnier day, so don't forget to bring a hat and sun block with you. You may also wish to bring along a stout pair of walking shoes, just in case the wind does turn more easterly and we have to move over to the Crest, which would be a 15 minute walk ish, over quite lumpy terrain.

Initially we will meet up at the Ice Cream slope lay-by and then move on up to the Wrecker at 10 AM where I will give us a very short, pre flying briefing.

So I look forward to seeing you there. 

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Bwlchfest Update

Hi Guys. I'm just beginning to check out the weather forecast for Bwlchfest this weekend and at the moment it's looking like we will have wind from the ENE of up to 15 mph, if the forecast remains the same as it is now, which means we would be flying the Wrecker. But we all know how quickly the forecast can change.

Watch this space and the SWSA and Slope Soaring in Wales Facebook pages for further updates.

The Wrecker

The Wrecker




Friday, 1 June 2018

Flying Forecast 2nd/3rd June

Hi guys, another weekend is upon us and it's looking not bad for getting some flying in. So without further ado, I will get straight into it.

Saturday - a bright, sunny day with 19°C and a west to west south westerly breeze of 8 - 9 mph, which will relate to probably around 10 - 12 mph on the slopes. And your slopes of choice will be Mickey's at the Bwlch, Meio and possibly Eglwysilan.

Sunday - is looking like the better day sun wise but the worst day wind wise, with a temperature of 22°C but the wind easterly at 8 - 9 mph. So your slope choices could be The Crest at the Bwlch, The Garth and Manmoel.

I shall be flying on Saturday afternoon but not on Sunday as I am running the first 12.5 mile stage of a 112 mile relay race, starting at 7 AM from Llanthony near Abergavenny, and then I will be supporting the rest of the team throughout the day.

So have a great time flying this weekend wherever you are.

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Bwlchfest 2018

Hey guys, this is just a reminder that Bwlchfest is only two weekends away, 9th & 10th June and I hope to see some of you guys there.

As we did last year, we will meet at the Ice Cream slope car park so that we can head off to whichever slope we will be flying from on the day by 10 AM sharp.

We may have a key for the gate leading to the SW & W facing Mickey's slope, however if you arrive after the 10 AM cut off time then I'm afraid you will have to walk up to the slope. No other slopes will be affected this way as we all have to walk to those.

So keep your fingers crossed for some good flying weather and I look forward to seeing you.

Friday, 11 May 2018

PSSA "Fly for Fun" meet

So this weekend sees the PSSA coming to S Wales for what has become a regular, annual meet, and it's good to see them and have a different aspect to our hobby gracing our amazing slopes. (I don't care what anyone says, I still think the Bwlch is THE best place in Britain to fly from).

So currently the weekends weather forecast looks like this.

Saturday - A bright day generally with a chance of a shower, wind southerly 5 - 7 mph so we can probably expect 10 - 14 mph on Back of Wrecker.


Sunday - A sunny day with a predominantly westerly wind of 14 - 16 mph, so we can expect    18 - 20 mph plus probably on Mickeys, which will mean we can fly just about anything in that wind speed on that slope.

We will meet each day at 10 AM at the Ice Cream slope lay-by and move on to the slope from there.

I hope to see the usual PSSA crowd there as well as some locals.


Friday, 4 May 2018

Weekend Flying Forecast 5th - 7th May

Good news guys, it is looking like we are in for some dry, sunny and warm weather over the holiday weekend. Hooray 😃 The bad news, is that the winds are forecast to be very light, so keep those Stingrays, Swifts etc safely bagged up at home and dig out the light stuff 😒

Saturday - a bright day, 18°C with a WNW of 3 mph gusting to 6 mph. I would usually say to head up to the Ice Cream slope for a north westerly, and you still could, but if there is too much west in that wind then this slope doesn't work so well. If that is the case, you could then take the long hike over to the west side of Mickeys which may work a little better for you, although it would still be off the face. Personally I think the better option maybe to fly the Meio as it is easier to move around the slope. You could also try Abertysswg.

Sunday - another bright day with 20°C and a SSE wind of 5 mph gusting to 8 mph. Your slope choices will be Back of Wrecker and Blaen Bran may also work.

Monday - mostly sunny, 21°C with a W 6 mph wind gusting 10 mph. If you have all day then get yourself over to Rhossili as this will definitely generate lift and you'll have a great day. Get there early for a place in the church car park otherwise you shouldn't have much of a problem parking in the National Trust car park down the road, it's just a longer walk. Your other options are Mickey's, Eglwysilan and possibly Meio.

I will probably give Meio a go on Saturday afternoon, and depending on how bad my hangover is on Sunday, I may get there then too.

Oh and just a reminder that next weekend the PSSA have a weekend of flying at the Bwlch, so come along, fly, watch, and enjoy a couple of good days, and pray for dry, windy weather.

Friday, 13 April 2018

Weekend flying forecast 14th/15th April

Yayyyy it looks like I'm finally going to get some flying in this weekend! And it's about time too. The weather still isn't great but it is slowly improving. So let's have a look at what we can expect in S Wales for this weekend.

Saturday - a dry, cloudy day but with some sunny intervals mid afternoon. Temperature around 13°C and the all important wind being south easterly about 9 mph gusting to 15 mph. So your slope choices will be Back of Wrecker, the far side of the Crest or Blaen Bran.

Sunday - after a wet start in the morning, the rain may clear to sunny intervals with occasional showers in the afternoon. We still have that south easterly wind but it is much stronger at 15 mph gusting to 27 mph. Your slope choices will be the same as for Saturday.

I am heading off to Sussex this weekend to fly the South Downs and that area with Paul Hampshire and his mates from Slope Soaring Sussex. As the wind forecast for Saturday is very light, I'm taking along my 2m electric power thermal soarer, just in case. Sunday it looks like the wind will be stronger so I'm taking Big Bird, (L213A), Phoenix models Carrera and the Genesis chevron wing.

Have a great weekend all.