10/07 - 10/10: update

Beautiful bad weather: sun, haze and calm winds!
One more day to finish the installation of sensors, BAT(Best Aircraft Turbulence)probe, inertial navigation system and data logger.


A day, too, to satisf urgent needs of our TV crew for their first series of exciting shots. And, finally, sufficient time to discuss our reconnaisance mission into the mountains.

The final "go" came from the masters of instrumentation: they had wrapped up hard- and software setup and convinced themselves that only minor adjustements, if any, would be necessary to be fully operational.

The next day, sunday Oct. 8th, we drove up to Uspallata, a small town on the main road to Chile, sitting in a broad valley at around 6000ft. For "Operation Mendoza" it was of substantial strategic significance. It was here that a rough field, 5000ft long, offered the only chance for an emergency landing on the way to and from the Aconcagua. For all Stemme crews this was a "must see".
And for camera man and director it was a hot spot, teasing their imagination to visualize all sorts of wild shots.


To accelerate our high altitude adaption we drove up to Puente del Inca, the starting point for the trek to Cerro Aconcagua, and tested our low temp gear.


The final verdict on the usability of "Uspallata Altiport" came the next morning, when Klaus and Mayor Eduardo Alvarez flew in for a couple of low, lower, lowest approaches.


After pilots and photographers had used up enough adrenalin, the Stemme headed into the "real" mountains and when everybody met at the Plumerillo hangar later that evening, Klaus reported a high point of 35000ft.

Air to air shots were on our duty list for the next day. Thanks to the drive and commitment of Colonel Rodolfo Hub, the liaison officer, the TV team had one hour worth of helicopter time in an Alouette/Lama at their disposal. No time to get close to the high peaks, plenty to get interesting footage.


In the afternoon Jörg and Klaus took off for the first science mission. After 6 hours they came back with a healthy set of data covering waves and turbulence all the way up to 27000ft....

and the strongest wave development was still predicted to be approaching from the south....