Plummet, I kited at this location for 12 days, 75% of the time on a 6m, 20% 8m and 5% 10m. It can be a difficult location to choose the right size as it is very gusty. You can see 5 - 40 kts all within 30 minutes and cycle around again. At the time that I launched it was 20 - 25 kts riding a TT.. The depower is below the bar (cleated) which requires unloaded front lines to pull in the depower line, With the kite at the edge of the window (but violently smacking the water) I could have tried to put more depower in the kite and body dragged or walked the kite towards shore. I have heard that flying with crossed lines wears out the lines. The instructor and student did not have a kite in the air. They were just talking on the beach. There are a few schools there and they all teach beginners in 25 kts + because they see these winds everyday at this time. There is a large beach cove that the beginners wash into with the instructors watching.
JGTR wrote:Problem here is riders not understanding what a true safety release is!!
A safety release the drops the kite onto the front lines is NOT a safety system, in excessive winds you can still get lofted/dragged.
A safety is one that releases onto a single line therefore depowering the kite.
You said you should have used your o shit handle - yes you are correct.
Mini 5th lines or kites that just drop onto the front lines (same thing) are NOT safety releases, all they do is depower the kite - ok in normal winds but in high winds as you have found you do not get enough depower!!
For example I always rode my Waroos connected to the o shit in strong winds or I swapped to the o shit if the weather was looking gnarly as the ring that you clip to is basically just a suicide depower setup and not a safety
Can't comment on the instructor as I wasn't there, the fact she was chatting to a student is strange in 40 knots - most people are off the beach in 40 knots! But yes I would have run out and helped anyone I saw struggling
Do the lines being crossed have anything to do with the problems or is it just the big kite? Is it just to big of a kite to be on a two line safety system?
I don't think it's the size of the kite, but rather the design attributes that governs how it behaves flagged on the front lines. The 2011 Cab bar that came with my 16m Switchblade flags to two lines, and it works great for that kite. Huge kite, but fully controllable flagged to the front lines. I have dumped it in deep water in a squall, had the kite tumble through the lines when it came down, and still wound the lines on the bar, recovered the kite, and self-rescued to shore.
I think some kites are unstable on two lines, and some aren't. All of my kites happen to work well flagged out on two lines. Probably the people who won't ride something that does not flag to one line, have kites that don't behave well on two.
Correct performance of a mini-5th depends on a correctly designed bridle depowering the kite. Some work some don't. Obvious irwe's doesn't. You can't fix a poorly working mini-5th with a new bar that releases to both center lines, because it's all in the bridle. For a safer kite, you gotta switch to a single center line flag out.
Difficult to judge without being 'on the spot' but I would have tried to keep the kite towards the shore and let it pull me in as Plummet has indicated. Even to the extent of letting it sit on the water that side so that someone coming to help can catch it easily.
And...not to highjack this thread...and I know there are plus / minus points for different kites and safety systems...but situations like this are why I particularly like the 5 line safety on my North Rebels. I feel more secure releasing to one line in the middle of the kite.
At the time the kite tumbled initially I was slightly downwind of the launching area and just out of view of most people. If I didn't get back up wind a bit I would have had the kite close to shore with no one to assist me with the 40 kt gusts. I started off with the kite towards shore as I was making my way up wind. I thought the safest thing to do was to release the CL. Once the kite had powered up and went through the wind window to the ocean side I was already walking back (towards shore) with it just on the safety leash. I know you don't have 100% depower running the safety off the ring below the CL.
While on the trip I watched a kite buddie (expert kiter) on his 8 m have his kite tumble and lines twist. He was about 100 m offshore. I saw what had happened and swam upwind of him and grabbed his kite. Once we got to shallow water he was able to get his lines sorted out. With super gusty conditions you never know what is going to happen.
As my kiting brother in-law says "It's not the first mistake that kills you it's the second"
I know you don't have 100% depower running the safety off the ring below the CL.
And herein lies the problem, depower is not a substitute for an adequate safety release system
No kite has 100% "depower" so a 10m in 40 knots released to its "safety" flying off its front lines will still drag you about. Even a 10m in 40 knots released onto a 5th line will still have too much pull for you to pull it back in to do a pack down but at least you will not get lofted!