The XC Maps tool provides various useful soaring parameters across the globe in 3 hour intervals for the next upcoming 3 days. These parameters can be broken into four distinct categories:
Each parameter contains useful information about the soaring potential for any given location and time across the planet. Some of these parameters come directly from the model output, such as sky cloud cover, while other parameters are derived from using the model output as the 'seed' to initialize our programs. Some parameters will prove to be more useful than others, and a few parameters are quite simply experimental in nature. We do not try to second-guess the model output data either, which means if the forecast models are very inaccurate, so will our soaring predictions for those given parameters. Remember that these XC Skies products are another suplementary source for understanding the entire soaring picture for a given time and place. There are also several important Notes and Assumptions
that need to be understood for these parameters to be fully useful.
We have taken great care to validate as many flights as possible across different regimes throughout the planet. In particular, we have validated such popular sites as Valle de Bravo Mexico, Governador Valaderez Brazil, Bright and Mystic Australia, and the United States western regions to name a few. The overall validation has been very encouraging, with startling accuracy much of the time for thermal parameters.
Read more about the details of these parameters, relationships, and caveats.Parameter DescriptionsNotes and Assumptions About XC MapsThe Nature of Forecast Models