The Crown Terrace is a North West facing site known for being excellent for ridge soaring, in the right conditions of course.
The weather at the Terrace can be at times somewhat unpredictable and can take many a pilot by surprise. All of a sudden it can become gusty and strong, resulting in very little forward speed and on occasions, pilots getting blown backwards! Always be mindful of the weather forecast before flying here and look for tell tale signs of stronger wind on Lake Hayes and on the trees off in the distance.
A good introduction from an experienced local pilot is a must as conditions can go from benign and happy to downright scary in a minute or two so learn what to look and feel for. It's not known as 'Crown Terrors' or the 'Terrace Monster' for nothing.
If you have been flying at Coronet and it's blows out there by the strong NW, by the time you get to the Terrace it will be either there already or on its way.
However, when it's good though... it is oh so good :)
We now have an excellent weather station installed close to the take off which provides up to the minute weather information, most importantly wind speeds and direction & air pressure.
The terrace airspace box is pretty easy since we normally just ridge soar there.
The altitude limit is 3,000ft MSL, which is the height of the top of Mount Beetham.
You can go out in front as far as the main road leading to Arrowtown.
You can fly towards Arrowtown to where the far end of the golf course meets the houses on the outskirts of Arrowtown. There is also a tall lone tree on the terrace just SW of Mount Beetham which is also a boundary marker.
Around the Southern point only as far as the first gully. It's easy to know because it's also where the main road starts to go in a straight line.
(Note, it's Mount Beetham, not Bob's peak... I'll fix that shortly)
The Take off
There are two take offs, an upper launch, wide enough for two gliders laid out side by side and a single lower launch when it's strong, one above the other.
Please read and take note of all the signage at this launch site upon arrival.
Most importantly, never block the access road or drive along the private access road past the take offs. Use the designated parking area. Do not fly over any residential properties adjacent to the launch site and always be polite and courteous to nearby landowners that you may encounter. If the top landing field is in crop, keep crop damage to an absolute minimum. Do not smoke at this site due to the risk of fire and take all rubbish away with you.
It is top landable, either on the take off itself or within the marked green triangle as shown on the above map.
The lower bomb out field is not in front however. Please do not land out in front.
The bottom landing field is to the South and around the corner, and about 250 metres below the terrace and across the main road, namely State Highway 6.
The landing field is bounded by fencing on all 4 sides and is a little tight, so approach with caution.
You will see a small wind streamer attached to the north boundary fence.
Sometimes this landing field has sheep in it but they do not bite.
Don't block the entrance with your car. Park it on the grass verge adjacent to the highway.
The land owners like to be able to use their driveway freely.
Don't land in the adjacent fields with livestock, especially in with the deer and the bulls!
That can be hazardous to your health (not kidding, they're skittish and have horns. If your glider is red in colour, be even more worried!
Some photos from the flying site