I have spent the last 2 afternoons sloping at Mt. Baldy near Michigan City IN. There are a lot of changes this year that slopers may want to take note of.
The first change is that the approach paths have been altered. The main (and only) path to the summit now begins at the service road on the west side of the main driveway entering the site. The result is a longer path to the top. The natural movement of the dune over the last couple of years has made the final approach to the summit a very steep one, so be advised to “keep it light” with the amount of stuff you carry with you.
The dune itself has moved a lot over the past couple of years. This year there’s a very nice, fairly flat area around the summit which makes an ideal landing zone. The lift “line” this year seems to favor direct north to slightly northwest winds. Northeast works too, but the amount of lift on the west side of the ridge drops off some. Finding the line is part of the challenge of flying the Dunes.
A couple of earlier contributors leave the impression that Mt. Baldy is a winter site only. This is not true. There are a bunch of us who fly in the spring to fall months. Any time there’s a good wind, Mt. Baldy is a good site. Yes, there are days in the summer when there are just too many people around to fly (usually when this happens, you can’t get into the parking lot anyway) On other days, you’ll share the air with hang gliders and parasailers. If there’s too many people, just relax and watch the bikinis. Fortunately, there are usually less people around when the wind is strong, so that’s good for us.
All in all, Mt. Baldy is a great site. Come on out and try it.
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