Windy.com introduces soaring forecast
I have only just come across the soaring forecast: useful as it goes out quite a long time. For the UK, it would be better to have more differentation in the convective depth: on the great majority of good thermal days, the depth is rarely more than 10000 ft.
An indication of thermal strength would also be a good addition.
Thanks for the additional layer. I have just evaluated the predicition over the last few thermal flying days. It is always important to note that thermal predicitions are also a bit regionally influenced, so my assessment is mainly valid for the thermally weaker area in NW Germany.
What I notice is:
The thermal height predicition is usually overoptimistic. Often 200m below is about right. And I am already talking about the best height achieved by the best pilot of the day.
The thermal max. height is an important parameter, but the thermal avg. strength would actually be much more useful and better to compare.
a) To begin with, the thermal height can be easily derived from the temp, which an advanced user will anyway look at. Thermal strength is less easy to derive without actual calculations and it is not so that high base = strong day.
b) Over mountainous terrain always the highest peak have the best thermal max. height. They do not always have the strongest thermals though, usually the better ones, but not always the strongest. Thus the prediciton becomes a terrain map there rather than a thermal forecast there.
Hard to say why the forecast is nearly always overoptimistic in my region. One reason might be that ground dryness plays in reality a role in how good the ground warms up and that is perhaps not used in the calculations.
Also anything a bit closer to the see gets see wind effects, though not in all wind situations and I find the predictions also over-optimistic in south wind situations.
I am a new user of Windy and was just looking at the soaring forecast. It seems like you are computing top of usable lift. I think it would also be useful to compute thermal updraft velocity and let the user toggle between them. And it would be nice to have access to the wind elevation slider when the soaring forecast is displayed so you can easily see the wind at different altitudes. This is looking very good overall, though. Thanks.
sierra03 | Premium last edited by
I am also a new user and have a similar question.
What is the "thermal altitude" ?
The top of the boundary layer ?
Or the maximum usable altitude ?
Thanks for the great job
Thermal detail for was roughly accurate for both location and time as observed during today's flight.
Kaktus 1 last edited by
Dear sirs, great job.
Is there any option to see the thermal strength in feet per minute at the selected altitude?
@kaktus-1 Hello, you can change the unit to feet in the legend in the bottom right corner. The forecast is available in 3hours steps for non-Premium users and 1hr steps for Premium.
slapia last edited by
Yeah, it's great!
I'm pilot too, flying of 42 years yet on the hangglider. This plugin gladly welcome.
Maybe, I 'll be buing The Premium licence of Windy too.
CaribooYJ | Premium last edited by
Excellent addition! Thanks!
SwairCare | Premium last edited by
waiting for thermals/ soaring to be finished.😀
I have a question and proposal for enhancing the the thermal layer GUI/ view according to many comments.
Q1: thermal Hight = usable hight? - is cloudbase defined as usable hight when clouds is formed by the thermals?
P2: have "elevation curves" for usable thermal hight (incl
P3: the colour indicate average climbrate..
(as completely they can be calculated on known data )
P4: keep cloud symbols.
P5: wind Particles animation (no colour) "under" point P2 -P5above.
with these in same view, I believe this will be a great overview where the flying conditions is the best..
(use to decide where to go and get a good general overview in a little wider area.
Also possible to see general routes for long distances.
for more details, most users probably look at different parameters /layers to make up their mind how flying will be