logo 2006 tri slope six pack

tri-slope six-pack slope flying event
Hosts:   Mid-Columbia Soarers and ShredAir
Sanction:   AMA-sanctioned event
Insurance:   AMA, MAAC, or equivalent insurance is required.
Contest Director:   Jay Deckercd email address
Entry fee:   All proceeds go to MCS.
Slope flying free of EPP wings and combat activity for the duration of the event.
This will be a friendly and enjoyable event. All participants will be eager to share the generous airspace and their considerable expertise. The CD and his deputies will enhance the flying experience by encouraging a positive attitude and courteous demeanor of all participants throughout the event.
venues and categories
flying at chandler butte
Ballistic Slope'n

higgins f-5 ballisticThe title says it all: bring your performance plane and have fun. Absolutely no foam wings or combat activity! This is true for all 6 categories (except possible Kiona DS) and all 3 venues of the Tri-Slope Six-Pack for the entire duration of the event. Chandler can produce lift more powerful than Eagle's with unbelievable compression at the cliff face. This is pure compression lift not augmented by wave lift, as can be the case at Eagle Butte. As the wind picks up, conditions at Chandler advance toward expert level much more quickly than at Eagle. We will have expert BSers (ballistic slopers) on site, to demonstrate and teach the simple techniques needed to enjoy seemingly extreme conditions here; let's hope we get some.

PSS Slope'n

Chandler simply is an excellent site for PSS; vertical lift, a tight approach, and a smooth LZ, what else does a PSSer need?! To acknowledge the advent of well-built and -flying EPP planes, we are allowing foamie PSS and conventional planes at Chandler.We don't think separate flying windows for PSS-only are needed. We will allow half-pipe and other formation flying for brief periods and will assure that every pilot will have plenty opportunity to tank up on slope juice.

Located between Prosser in the west and Benton City in the east. Access is via gravel and dirt roads, which can be negotiated by passenger cars. The slope is a west-facing, steep basalt cliff about 600 feet high. This site offers panoramic views from the Cascades in the west across the Yakima and Columbia River valleys and the Hanford Nuclear Reservation to the Blue Mountains in the east. The slope offers vertical lift when the wind blows from the west, which is the predominant direction. There is front-side compression slope'n only; no safe DS groove exists and no DS will be allowed here during the event. The landing zone is relatively small, but smooth and free of turbulence. The approach gets more unconventional as wind speed increases but is easily mastered by intermediate pilots.



flying at eagle butte
Classic Scale Slope'n

lo 100 classicGiven the right conditions (a good chance this time of year), there hardly is a better place to safely fly the labors of love. Eagle Butte's easy launch, smooth lift, and generous and turbulence-free landing zone, gives pilots as much satisfaction flying these planes, as their builders had building them.

Modern Scale Slope'n

This slope is the ideal location to get up-close and personal with these sleek and efficient planes. No other plane can range out over the valley and do whistling high-speed passes like a large modern scale glider. If the lift is right, hand-launching 30-lb beauties is a safe and fun endeavor, and larger planes can be ROG bungee-launched directly into the lift band.

Located just south of Richland. Access roads are paved, except for the last 1/2 mile of dirt road to the top of the slope. Passenger cars can negotiate this road. The slope site overlooks Badger Valley. The slope faces predominately south-west and is about 400 feet high. Eagle Butte can provide phenomenal lift far beyond what one would expect from just the slope alone. Apparently, the hill sits right where a wave is formed by the wind blowing across the Columbia Plateau and Badger Valley. No DS groove here, just smooth front-side lift. The landing zone is huge and the approach is straight forward and easy; full-sized gliders could land here. This is why EagleButte is a prime site for large scale gliders.



flying at kiona butte
Dynamic Soaring

tempest DSKiona offers the possibility of huge DS, particularly for large, efficient planes. DS there remains largely unexplored. Years ago, Paul Naton set the first measured record of 173 mph there, which held until the DS-Fest in 2002. Today, the record is 300+ mph, a speed probably not attainable at Kiona.

Foamie DS

Acknowledging the advent of some decent foamie DS planks, these are the only foam wings allowed at the Tri-Slope Six-Pack event, and they will be allowed for DS only. These planks are a good tool for exploring Kiona's relatively unknown grooves.

Located just southwest of Benton City. Access road is gravel. Passenger cars can negotiate this road. Kiona, like Chandler, is part of the Horse Heaven Hills, and it offers similarly panoramic views. The 2000-foot grassy slope faces north to north-east and can offer huge dynamic soaring grooves. Landing under good DS conditions is relatively easy in the shallow lift on the front side. The quality of the DS can be a bit fickle here, depending on the exact conditions. Kiona will become the main slope'n venue, should we have northerly wind. In that case, there is a good LZ with decent approach for scale glider, and more than enough slope space to separate the categories. But let's assume we will get the predominantly south to west wind.



flying conditions
Flying Weather

Even though we call it Tri-Slope, reality is that flying will likely happen at only two sites simultaneously. This is so, because Chandler and Kiona are in such close proximity (about a mile or two as the glider flies), that they will have the same wind direction. Chandler works best in a west wind, while Kiona needs north for the front side or south for the backside.
Eagle Butte is about 10 air miles south-east of Kiona, and usually has wind conditions different from those at Chandler and Kiona. This means, we'll likely fly at Eagle and Chandler or at Eagle and Kiona. This is assuming we have the south to west flows which are predominant in the spring.

Separation of Glider Types

We want to allow participants to fly at the venue they're most comfortable at, and the only "restriction" is that scale gliders have preference at Eagle Butte; so ideally, scale happens at Eagle, while PSS and purpose-designed gliders tear it up at Chandler (or Kiona).
But pilots preferring Eagle, and particularly the ones bringing scratch-built planes, may fly at Eagle Butte. Scale planes will still have preference, but there is enough room and time to accommodate other aircraft. Likewise, if only Eagle provides front-side lift, Eagle will be the venue for all front-side sloping. In this case, we will impose temporal and spatial structures allowing everyone safe flying time and space.

The slopes are located between Prosser and Richland, Washington, just south of I-82. From Seattle, take I-80 and I-82 east; from Portland, take I-84 east, then I-82 west. area map
1. Chandler and Kiona from Richland

Take I-82 west to the Benton City exit; turn south and cross under freeway; turn west across railroad tracks, then south through the hamlet Kiona; the main street becomes Webber Canyon Road; follow it about 3/10 mile to McBee Road veering off to the right; McBee is a gravel road. Follow McBee up the hill to the top. Kiona's main flying site is immediately on your right. If you're headed for Chandler or Kiona DS, continue on McBee for less than a mile to where McBee turns 90 degrees south; turn off McBee onto the dirt road heading north up to the ridge; at the top of ridge, turn east for Kiona DS or west for Chandler.

2. Chandler and Kiona from Prosser
3 slopes map

Take Hwy 221 south out of town; after climbing to the plateau, 221 heads south for 1 mile then east for 5 miles; where 221 turns south again, turn left onto County Well Road going east; after 3 miles, turn north onto McBee Road; McBee is gravel. Follow McBee for 4 miles to where it turns 90 degrees east. If you're headed for Chandler or Kiona DS, turn off McBee onto the dirt road heading north up to the ridge; at the top of the ridge, turn east for Kiona DS or west toward Chandler. If you're headed for the main Kiona site, continue on McBee for less than a mile to where it tops the ridge; the flying site is immediately to your left.

eagle map
3. Eagle Butte from I-82

Take exit 109 onto Badger Road; going north, follow Badger for a short distance and immediately turn left (west) onto Leslie; Leslie crosses the railroad tracks then turns right. Turn left (west) at the first intersection onto Reatta; follow Reatta to the top, then turn left (south) onto Bermuda. After Bermuda crosses the freeway, turn right (west) onto Sagebrush. Sagebrush turns ninety degree left then curves around toward the west and some newer houses. As you pass the first few houses, head straight off the paved road onto the dirt road leading to the slope.


At this time, we ask you to send us an e-mail if you're planning to attend.

Please list:

your name,
insurance (AMA, MAAC),
your frequency/ies,
what you will be flying.

On-Site Registration and Frequency Control
There is no centralized meeting/registration area. Instead, a pair of "officials" at each slope site will handle this. These officials are in touch with one another per cell phone to assess the flying conditions at each site. We will hold a brief pilot's meeting at 9:30AM at the sites each morning to present current information and issues.
As you arrive at your preferred slope site, the officials will be looking for you, and before you unpack, please check in with them. They will register you, check your insurance (every participant must have proper insurance), and record your frequency/ies.
There will be no transmitter impound. Instead the officials will keep track of duplicate frequencies, and introduce pilots sharing frequencies to one another. The pilots are then responsible to assure mutual safety and to share flying time.

Promote safe and enjoyable slope flying at outstanding slopes
Given the unique situation of having 3 separate venues available, just about guarantees a fun event for all participants in all 6 categories. Frequency control will be in effect at all sites at all times.

Guarantee participants aslope experience free of EPP wings and combat activity
With the possible exception of foamie DS at Kiona, there will be absolutely no foam wing and/or combat activity at all three venues of the Tri-Slope Six-Pack for the entire duration of the event. With the advent of well-built and -flying EPP planes, we are allowing foamie PSS and conventional planes to fly at Chandler, preferably.

launch at chandlerRevive scale slope flying
Eagle Butte is an outstanding site for scale slope'n: easy launch; (usually) reliable lift; and vast, easy, turbulence-free approach and landing, make this slope suitable for any scale model; even the big ones which are normally relegated to aero-tow only.

Attract pilots from all over the US and abroad
We have designed the format of this event to attract national and international attention and attendance. If the weather cooperates (a good assumption that time of year), we will have an exceptional event.

Attract "experts" who will share their tricks
This event will be an opportunity for pilots of all levels to attend and share building and flying techniques. From making retractable landing gear function reliably to launching into a DS groove to landing an 11-lb slope racer in a gale, many aspects of slope planes and flying will bedemonstrated and discussed. The slope sites themselves will be the "work shops."

other considerations
Aero-tow: No aero-towing will be allowed at any time.
Hand-launch and electric-powered gliders: Always bring a hand-launch glider to a slope event, period.
Electrics will be tolerated, but only in case there is unreliable lift. Be prepared at any time to have your electric-powered glider commandeered as lift finder for unpowered gliders to fly into.
Pusher-prop flying wings will be shot down with fully-automatic potato flak. No matter how cool or fast their pilots may think they are, their whine is nothing but a nuisance to everyone else.
Pets: Leave them at home, if possible. Otherwise, they must be on a leash at all times. Owners clean up after their pets.

2004 3s6p2005 3s6p

There are four RV Parks in the area:
Columbia Park in Kennewick: 509/783-3711
Wright's RV Park, 611 Columbia Trail Park, Richland, 509/627-1000
Sandy Height RV Park, 8801 St. Thomas Dr., Pasco, 509/542-1357
The Barn Motor Inn Restaurant and RV Park, Prosser, 509/786-1131

Limited self-contained camping is possible at Kiona and Chandler only. These sites are public land administered by the Bureau of Land Management, and certain rules apply. We request that you e-mail or call us ahead of time if you wish to camp there.

Nearby Hotels

Royal Hotel, 1515 George Washington Way, Richland, 509/946-4124
Bali Hi Motel, 1204 George Washington Way, Richland, 509/943-3101
Hampton Inn, 486 Bradley Blvd., Richland, 509/943-4400
Motel 6, 1751 Fowler, Richland, 509/783-1250
Red Lion Hotel Richland, 802 George Washington Way, Richland, 509/946-7611
Shilo Inn, 50 Comstock Inn, Richland, 509/946-4661
Silver Cloud Inn, 7901 Quinalt Ave, Kennewick, 509/735-6100
Super 8 Motel, 626 Columbia Center, Kennewick, 509/736-6888
Holiday Inn Express, 1232 Columbia Park Trail, Richland, 509/737-8000
Best Western Prosser Inn, 225 Merlot Drive, Prosser, 800/688-2192
Prosser Motel, 1206 Wine Country Road, Prosser, 509/786-2555
The Barn Motor Inn Restaurant and RV Park, Prosser, 509/786-1131