Sailplane to the Stratosphere

Perlan 2A wall of cloud runs above the eastern slope of the Carson Range, which looms over the town of Minden, Nevada, about an hour south of Reno. The wall runs the length of the ridgeline that stretches south toward the desert cities of Palm Springs and Las Vegas. A broad expanse of brilliant blue sky separates it from another wall of cloud running parallel. Stretching from the California border across central Nevada is a series of cloud lines, like waves rolling toward the shore, accompanied by vicious winds. Airliners approaching Reno report severe turbulence, and most small aircraft are staying on the ground. For pilot Tim Gardner, however, the weather is perfect—ideal conditions for high-altitude soaring. “It’s killing me not to get up there,” he says, but the glider he’s learning to fly, Perlan 2, is not quite ready. Read more in the online-report of the AirspaceMagazine.

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