I didn't pay too much attention to the sky, so I was shocked at how dark it was once I cleared the tree line on launch. Noticing that the top-of-climb (marked by a truncated column of smoke) was below tow height also sent fears of sledders through my spine.
I grabbed the first bit of lift I found and hung on. It soon became apparent there was abundant but weak lift around. However, since the top-of-climb was low, a bad glide could easily put you on the ground.
I spent the afternoon flying with friends ...
... and locals.
I kept looking up at Linda during the flight, but managed to hang on to get the last laugh by being the final one to land.
Here is a short video from the flight.
Flights: 1, Duration: 2:06