Volunteer FAQs


Where To Stay
There is free camping at Applegate Lake.  There are other options for other places to stay in the valley. Here is the link for other options http://wingsoverapplegate.org/accommodations/

We will be able to provide lunches for the volunteers this year on the day that you work.  I will need a volunteer to be lunch wrangler and get the orders from the volunteers the night before, and to periodically run into town to pick up the lunches from the grocery story. Garon will again be serving his famous soups and chili at the bar.  I will have coffee, tea, soft drinks and snacks for volunteers at HQ during the day.  Coffee, ice cream, and sandwiches are also available at the Code 3 drive thru coffee stand in the Ruch Store parking lot. There is the Indigo Grill in Ruch which is under new ownership. Sweets and Eats on Upper Applegate is another option especially for breakfast.  Ray’s grocery in Jacksonville has great sandwiches and take out foods and is open until 10.

HQ is at Wells Land again.   Parking will be in the field to the left when you first turn in the drive. Then proceed to HQ and sign in, your credentials and your parking permit for the staff/volunteer parking area… 

Parking on Launch
There will be parking passes for those vehicles allowed up on launch during the event. Launch must be accessible for the large buses and any Emergency vehicles that may be needed.  Everyone is encouraged to carpool as much as possible. Volunteers who want to fly early before the race starts will have transportation on the buses going up. If you choose to drive your personal vehicle you will be asked to park in the parking areas below launch and to hike up the rest of the way while the Race is on.

Retrieve Drivers Needed
We have the use of several vehicles and are renting vans to help with retrieves. We will need drivers for all those vehicles.   If you use your own vehicle, we will pay for the gas you use.   We will have debit cards available that you can use to fill up at the Jacksonville station.  We need smaller vehicles to go out and pick up those pilots who have landed somewhere between launch and goal. Often that means you are only going after one or 2 people and taking them to a transfer point for the shuttle vans. If you have never driven retrieve before, we can train you, we will have  extra vhf radios we can loan out…

AT&T is the only carrier in the Applegate Valley that works reliably. Verizon is next best. Reception is better this year but there still are lots of places that don’t have coverage. There will be Wi-Fi available at HQ.

We will be using the Telegram App for communication during the event.  It is a free app that allows quick and easy communication between HQ, the Pilots and the Volunteers. It works with either Apple or Android systems.  Download the app to your smartphone and then click on the invitation to join the Group.  There will be 2 groups. 1 for general information and one for communication with and among the Retrieve Drivers.

 Volunteer Flying
As a volunteer you will be able to fly before and after the competition. We ask that you follow a few rules. Volunteers will have rides to launch, pick up and retrieve upon landing.

If you want to fly the valley locally you can launch before the launch opening or after thestar of the last race each day. If you want to go xc we will do our best to pick you up with the pilots in the race.  To be retrieved you must land at the land by time specified for the pilots racing. Please read the Volunteer Flying Rules on the next page.  Do Your homework:  Go Here and learn about flying at Woodrat https://rvhpa.org/site-guide/woodrat/.    There are several “NO Landing” Zones and information on them is at this link https://rvhpa.org/visiting-pilots/  
Landing in a NO LAND zone makes for bad relations with the landowners.

You must have USHPA and RVHPA membership to fly here.   There are two levels of RVHPA membership Local and Visiting Pilot.  RVHPA memberships are available online and are good through the end of the year.

As a volunteer we will do all we can to see that you get up to launch to fly before the event, and then get transportation either up to launch or returned to HQ.  If you as a volunteer go xc, and you want to be retrieved, we will retrieve you with the race pilots. If you want to be retrieved with the AO pilots, there are certain things you must do.:

Volunteer Flying Rules
You must have a spot or InReach for any flight other than a sled ride to the bailout LZ.  You may launch early in the day before the race starts or at least 15 minutes after the last start gate opens.

  • You must be at least a P3
  • You must have a working vhf radio and be on meet frequency while flying, retrieve frequency after you land.
  • You must have a working cell phone.
  • You must have your device registered on Dave Wheeler’s xcfind page.
  • You must sign out on launch so that we have a record of who is flying
  • You must check in LOK and PUP with HQ check in
  • You may not compete with race pilots for thermals on course.

We will work to retrieve you with the race pilots.  If you do not sign out or you fly in another direction, we will not be able to retrieve you.  For example, if goal is Donato’s and you fly to Grants Pass, get ready to hitch.

You cannot go beyond goal.  If goal is Donato’s and you fly to Emigrant Lake, get ready to hitch

You must land by the “Land By Time”. If you go xc and land after the Land By Time, and there are no drivers in the area you should get ready to hitch.

You must show your event credentials to your driver to get retrieved.


A Free Flyer is any pilot who is not registered as a competitor, or a volunteer is considered a Free Flyer.  We do not discourage free flying however they cannot be on course during the race or launch during the window.  Free Flyers are responsible for their own retrieve. Free Flyers may not park at top launch during the Race.  AO Retrieve Team will not pick up Free Flyers.   They must abide by all the rules outlined in RVHPA site guide and Applegate Open event Guide.