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 Post subject: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 4:21 am 
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I have a house on Mobile Bay (eastern shore). This is in the very southern part of Alabama and it opens into the Gulf. I really want to kiteboard but I don't know if I could launch here. My problem is that wharfs about 400 ft long run pretty much the whole shore line and they are about 100 to 200 ft apart. There is a spot where I have about 1000 ft of beach to launch but the beach is only 20ft wide. Is there a safe way for a beginner to launch and land a kite in this situation or is it hopeless?

Thanks, Stuart


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 4:51 am 
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Location: Southwestern Ontario
I am a beginner as well

If you see obstacles that you are not sure how to avoid, don't do it! An inexperienced kiter can easily be over powered by their kite. I know! Fortunately, I was taking lessons and supervised when it happened and we were in a beginner friendly area. Don't think it will not happen to you, cause it will. Any obstruction is a danger to new riders.
I'm glad you were able to recognize the challenge and ask your question. Much better then just doing and being sorry for the result. You obviously recognize the danger...There must be a better spot for you to learn in. Are there no instructors in your area?

Sincerely

Pete


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 4:58 am 
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I am definitely planning to take lessons in a safe place but this would be my normal riding spot. Could I ride in a place like this with some experience?

Thanks, Stuart


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 5:18 am 
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Location: Upper Padre . . . . --> Oleander
I can think of three ways to make it work but can't say for sure without being there. Once you get started you could probably hook up with some kiters to find the best spots in the area. They will be stoked to help you figure out how to work a new launch.

Jake


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 9:25 am 
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never launch in front of obstacles. If you can't do it safely, than that beach is not recommended.

But if the water entry is shallow, than you could easily walk into the water and launch from there...the safest way anyway.

And yes, take lessons, otherwise the risk of getting hurt or dying is big.

Good luck!

PS: maybe show us a picture of the beach?

and is there no launch nearby? --> www.kitebeaches.com


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 10:00 am 
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Well, there is a way, but it's not (IMO) a beginner way to launch.
The new way we launch kites, well, the newer SLE kites (but I have done it all the time with the 07 Rebel), is the drift launch.
Since you are upwind of the kite, you don't need much beach. Unless the wind is straight onshore, well... I guess there might be a problem. Or you step into the water to get a better angle.

The piers should not be a problem, as long as you know what you are doing. Sounds like you are ready to go, but take lessons, if possible at the location you want to kite at.

Just be careful. We don't want to read about you later on in the news. Or worse ...


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 3:53 pm 
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If you aren't comfortable launching from there then don't .Get skilled somewhere else until you can confidently make that call based on your ever increasing experience.


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 4:04 pm 
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Location: PASA Level III Instructor FL- OBX - MI - the world
jakemoore wrote:
I can think of three ways to make it work but can't say for sure without being there. Once you get started you could probably hook up with some kiters to find the best spots in the area. They will be stoked to help you figure out how to work a new launch.
Jake


This together with lessons would be the best strategy.

Once you figure it out, DO NOT let your guard down...these type of launch conditions will always pose additional risks when launching and landing, especially when you have any sudden wind/weather changes. BE CAREFUL, even experienced riders get themselves into trouble with situations like this.


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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 6:36 am 
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There are three pictures of two different beaches. The first two pictures are of a public beach that I can have access to. According to google earth I was wrong on my guesses of space. It says that I have about a 2000 foot span of beach that is 50 ft wide. The wind is usually running parallel or almost parallel but slightly on shore so I imagine I could step out into the water and use a standard self-launch. The third picture is of the beach where my house is. Because this is an old picture there are actually one or two more wharfs there. I can stand up past the piers but it is between 5 to 5 1/2 feet of water out there and I am not sure if you can do a drift launch in that kind of depth. Once again the wind is generally parallel or almost parallel but slightly onshore.

Stuart


Attachments:
File comment: This is an overhead shot of the public beach where I would most likely launch from.
overheadbeach.JPG
overheadbeach.JPG [ 70.15 KIB | Viewed 1438 times ]
File comment: This is a picture from google earth of the public beach that kind of gives you an idea how big the beach is.
beach shot.jpg
beach shot.jpg [ 99.4 KIB | Viewed 1670 times ]
File comment: This is where the house is. You can see how close the wharfs are to each other.
house.JPG
house.JPG [ 52.93 KIB | Viewed 1671 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: Somebody please make this work!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:12 am 
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the overheadbeach.JPG looks good.
Forget the other place, too many obstacles...I wouldn't want to launch there!

It looks like the water is shallow as well, so it should be no problem to launch standing in the water, at the furthest point away from the next wooden bridge.

But if I were you, I would go on a 2-3 weeks holiday do a place with wind, do a course and then you will be able to launch and land in a place like this. Make sure to train to release in emergency situations. This will be key. It needs to be a reflex. And then you should be able to have fun at that spot. Remember, always have someone watching you, or find another kiter. Don't go out alone.


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