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Thanks for all of the advice and experience! Prevent a wind-induced fly-away!

PolarBZ

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I just wanted to drop in and say thanks to everyone for all of the advice and experience they freely hand out in these forums. I got my MP about a month ago and fly a couple of times a week - all local to my neighborhood. I don't take great photos and I don't put together good video - yet - but I had an experience last week where all of the advice I'd read and seen here came together in a success story.

Short version is I took the MP out and up with the intent of getting some pano shots with the new-fallen snow. Take off was no issues and the low-level winds were minimal. As I got up to shooting height, I did get the "high-wind" warning, but I usually get those, so I've (foolishly) begun to ignore them. I clicked into my pano mode and started shooting the different types, checking out the photos and generally being unaware that the MP was drifting away. By the time I'd come to figure out where the MP was, it had drifted about 300m away (in the course of maybe 30 seconds - or more, or less, my sense of time is garbage). But, it had definitely drifted much further than I'd liked.

I didn't panic because I've flown this area a lot and thought, "No biggie, I'll just fly back to where I was." Looking at the screen, I pushed the forward button... and nothing seemed to happen, "Maybe video relay delay?" I thought. But, then I noticed that, despite my pushing the MP to go towards my location, it was still drifting AWAY from my location. That was when my heart rate started to rise. But, not worried yet, I flipped to Sport mode and thought to power through the winds. Sport mode engaged, and.... still drifting away. WTH? Not good. Still not panicked, but not happy. I engaged the video recording (mostly to have a record of where I went down if things didn't go right), and scanned the area downwind for a safe landing area as I dropped altitude to try and get out of the wind stream. As I dropped down, I kept push the stick towards home and kept hoping to see some positive movement. Finally, just above the tree-tops, I started making ground up the street towards my house and my heart went back to its usually flying rate.

In the end, the MP came back home, safe and sound thanks to all of the information, knowledge and experience I'd read here and other places:

1. Sport Mode
2. Constant evaluation of surroundings
3. Safe landing areas
4. Change elevation to get out of the wind

What I FAILED to do was to take into account wind direction when going up and to pay attention to location while checking pics and videos.

Here's a quick, terrible video of the experience. Thanks again for all of your help.

 
Good job! Remember you can also use the radar to determine which way the front of the Mavic is pointing. Weather its towards you or away from you. I have read some threads where the pilot thought they were pushing the stick to bring the Mavic back towards the Home Point, but instead they were disoriented and were actually flying away from the Home Point.

Then had more drift away from them and thats when things got really dicey.
 
Good job! Remember you can also use the radar to determine which way the front of the Mavic is pointing.


Yup, I completely understand and agree that the radar is useful. My issue wasn't that I didn't know which was to go... just that it wasn't moving that direction! =)
 
And before flight, you're going to check the wind speeds in the weather forecast right?
Glad you saved your aircraft. It always pays to remain calm.
 
And before flight, you're going to check the wind speeds in the weather forecast right?
Glad you saved your aircraft. It always pays to remain calm.

Absolutely. Thing is, I DID check the wind speeds and direction, but only surface winds - that was my mistake. Next time, I'll look further than my initial plan and out into the potential plans.
 
Dittos on the benefit of the radar in the corner of the display. Several times I’ve flown 1000+ feet away and not been sure where I was by the camera exactly even in my home town, but I just turn the mp until the arrow icon is headed toward home and I can see it heading back to me.
 
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