Weather - South Downs Hang Gliding

Wind Speed & Direction

Light winds with good lift provide the best flying conditions. Winds in excess of 20mph can be unpleasant. The wind direction determines which flying sites we will visit on the day.

The South Downs are perfect for learning to fly hang gliders. We have training slopes facing all wind directions and roads to the top for the higher launches. Our south coast climate provides far more good flying days than other areas. More pilots have learnt to fly here than anywhere else in the UK.

UKMO weather chartSurface Pressure Chart

The wind speed and direction, and any "significant" weather can be read from surface pressure charts. This synoptic chart shows the isobars and weather fronts. This chart is an "actual", not a forecast. (Image from UK Met Office)

These days the forecasts are very accurate for the next day then gradually decline in reliability over the following days. Beyond five days the weather system is considered too unpredictable for useful forecasts.
Notes on meteorology

Training Weather

Introductory Days One and Two are flown in a wide range of conditions using our tether rope systems. The low solo flights of EP and CP courses require light winds to avoid turbulence. For the high flights at the end of the CP course we need light winds with a northerly component. Try watching the five day forecast, (link below), to spot the days with light winds. Call us to get your name in the diary!
Our famous southerly sea cliffs are not used for solo training flights!

Forecast for Training

Once you have booked your day(s) in our diary ... it will then depend on the weather forecast. We use the links shown in the table below.

On the evening before your booking, after 7.30pm, call 07890 362648 and listen to the message.

If "we are not going ahead ...". Sorry, the latest forecast is unsuitable.
Please phone again on the evening before your next booking, or, book another date and try again.

If "we are going ahead ...", we will meet up at the specified location and time.
We meet at the Sussex HGPG shop, two miles east of Lewes, on the A27. (Postcode BN8 6JZ)

Latest UKMO Chart Latest T+12 + Surface Pressure
UKMO Map UK Met Office Map
Weather Online Isotachs GFS model (Isobars 2mb apart)
BBC Weather Lewes Area. 5 day forecast
RASP GM Air stability. Forecasted soundings.
Five Day Charts T(0), T+24, T+36, T+48, etc.



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South Downs Hang Gliding

Gibraltar Farm, Firle, East Sussex. BN8 6NB

Tel. 07890 362648