As i only need another 2 sucessfull pre declared landings, ive declared this one right from the start, even though its my first jump of the day, and looking at the canopies that were landing while im waiting to be manifested, it looks like the wind is quite constant.
Get eared up and ready to go, and make mental notes of the wind direction in relation to the sun, then we’re in the plane, and up in the air. I do my now normal rolling exit, and open stable after a single roll, i then flip over onto my back and keep that stable for a few seconds before flipping back over onto my front. A few backflips, even though the first one went very sideways, just for fun, followed by a few 360 turns, before deploying my canopy at 3,500 feet.
The canopy opens, but the slider is stuck over half way up the lines, and the end cells are closed, so i grab the steering toggles, and give a few good hard pulls, the end cells open, but the slider remains stuck where it is, and no amount of pumping the toggles is releasing it. The next thing through my mind is that im experiencing my first malfunction, so i let go of the steering toggles and check my altitude, im still above 3,000 feet, so have time and height to make a decision if im going to cut the canopy away or not, but as a last resort, i grab hold of the risers, and shake the life out of them and pull them about, and it works, the slider comes down the lines and they expand fully, but, during all of this, the wind has been behind me, and im now quite a distance from the landing area, at 2,800 feet, i turn towards the landing area, and ride into the wind all the way. I make it back to the landing area, but im around 50M short of the pre declared landing zone
Afterwards, while speaking to Tom who was on the ground watching, he said that if i had turned into the wind before trying to sort out the slider, i wouldnt have had as much ground to make up and would have landed within the declared zone, but, at the time, in my mind, sorting out the problem with the canopy had the top priority, even though i would have been able to turn, and then sort it out, but, this is another lesson learned so it was a successfull learning jump, even if it wasnt a successfull pre declared landing jump