October Launch


Members and Friends,

Mixed news from the Forest Service – The prairie has gone from too dry to maybe too wet.   We have been approved to proceed with our scheduled Oktoberfest launch on Saturday and Sunday only, with the usual precautions and respect for the prairie.  Conditions could be very muddy.  Please tread lightly and protect our prairie usage.  An important reminder – in spite of the recent moisture, the Fire Risk remains high – extra vigilance will be expected. The prairie remains fragile and combustible – NO SPARKIES ALLOWED.


Our waiver will be a constant 20,000’ AGL, with arrangements for “windows of opportunity” to be coordinated.  If you will need a higher altitude “window” during the weekend, please advise me ASAP.

Remember Range Etiquette.  If you find a gate closed, close it behind you.  Stay on the authorized roads (Foot recovery only) and please don’t park more than 100’ off the road at the launch site. Be prepared for changing weather conditions.  Afternoon thundershowers should be expected.

We anticipate having the range set up and ready by 9 AM on Saturday and we’ll operate until 6 PM.  On Sunday, the range will open at 8 AM and probably close by 3 PM.   ALL high power flyers must be current NAR or Tripoli members.   Please remember that Range Safety is in everyone’s best interest.

The Pawnee National Grassland offers the ultimate in rustic, open space camping. Self sufficient camping is permitted on site.  We are, however, limited to only one campfire in the established fire pit at the south end of the flight line.  Firewood is nonexistent on the prairie so contributions are welcome.  Please treat our National Grassland with respect.  As is typical with camping in most public areas, we are required to remove all of our trash.  Be considerate and responsible.   If you bring it, be prepared to leave with it.  Please clean up your parking and prep area before you leave and take all of your stuff with you.

NCR is an Authorized Permitee of the Pawnee National Grassland.  A morning orientation briefing for participants will be held and will include a discussion of safety and emergency procedures, fire conditions and instruction, applicable rules and regulations, and what is expected of participants with regards to the use of NFS lands under our special use permit.

Please note that all launch events will be conducted using nationally approved/accepted range safety practices.  The launching of rockets on NFS land is normally prohibited under a Forest Service Region 2 fire regulation.  The issuance of NCR’s permit allows launches to take place by exempting the Holder from that regulation for approved launch events only.  All launches, other than those conducted by the Holder during approved launch events, are outside the scope of this permit and are prohibited by Forest Service regulations.

As always, volunteers are needed to help with range set up, operation and clean up. Hope to see you out on the range.

The Sky Has Fallen

The Sky Has Fallen:Persistent HOT and DRY weather has punished the prairie to the point of a much higher risk and…

Publicado por Jeffrey Joe Hinton em Segunda, 3 de julho de 2017

2017 Mayhem Recap

In case you were wondering –

Despite the normal amount of un-certainty regarding the weather and vegetation conditions on the Pawnee National Grassland, Mile High Mayhem was another epic weekend for rocketry hobbyists.   A slow start, 8 to 10 mile an hour winds  and a short afternoon rain shower Friday afternoon didn’t  hinder the efforts of 24 different flyers from launching 57 flights – 44 Class One and 13 Class Two.  Much of the day was spent making final preparations for Saturday and Sunday’s flights.

Waiver opened on Saturday at 8 AM and our safety briefing was held around 10 AM to ensure most fliers were present and registered.  For the weekend, we had a total of 67 signed in flyers, not including an additional 18 kids flying with parental guidance.   One flyer made the visit from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, while the Yehle family came to fly from Salt Lake City.  There were some flyers from Wyoming but the majority of flyers were from the State of Colorado – from the western slope (Delta and Grand Junction) and from down south (Pueblo and Colorado Springs) and from all over the front range population centers.   80 different fliers lofted a total of 215 flights – 148 Class One and 67 Class Two, including the highest flight of the weekend – 24,359’ and 2 newly Certified Level Three fliers.  The Steve Frazier Memorial Drag Race and Memorial Tribute flights to Scott Corliss and Jeff Layne were also very special moments during the perfect day.  Clear skies and plenty of sunshine helped make the afterglow events of the day all the better.  While many folks packed in it after the glorious day, lots stayed for the stars and campfire.

Waiver opened again at 8 AM on Sunday but folks were a little slow to take to the skies.   Still, 52 different fliers put up 104 flights -72 Class One and 32 Class Two before the heat of the day took its’ toll and we started breaking down the range.   Waiver closed at 2:30 and cleanup was mostly completed by 4.

A grand total of 376 flights for the weekend.  Not a new record number of fights but easily a launch event that will long be remembered.

We are all hoping the spotty rain showers continue and the grass stays green long enough for our next scheduled event – High Skies in July.  I wouldn’t expect nearly the same number of fliers or flights but one never knows what’s going to happen until we have clear skies and permission to “push the button”. Huge thanks to all involved.