Episode 29: Interview with Ian Downes at Lake Keepit gliding club

Landing in Lake Keepit, NSW, the Out-n-Back crew had the chance to experience gliders in action and spoke to glider pilot Ian Downes.

Ian is the President of the Lake Keepit Soaring Club and shares some interesting knowledge about gliders and personal experiences.

Ian said Lake Keepit was the last full-time gliding club in Australia. One of the club requirements is to carry radios.

'If you adopt standard procedures and standard phraseology you can limit your radio calls to essential traffic,' Ian said. 'We do have a chat frequency where you can get on talk in plain English and have a chat about how things are going. What thermal's working here and what thermals are working there.'

Ian said soaring has come a long way from wood and fabric gliders in the 50s and early 60s.

'Now we're using carbon fibre and kevlar and all sorts of advancements in technology.'

It's in a wonderful location scenically. It's just beautiful. It offers a great variety of scenery. We have fabulous weather. We have about 340 days of the year when you can fly.

Ian Downes, President of the Lake Keepit Soaring Club

Published date: 17 October 2022
Online version available at: https://www.casa.gov.au//resources-and-education/education-and-training/out-n-back/episode-29-interview-ian-downes-lake-keepit-gliding-club
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