I'm really interested to here what you think about or better still your experience of wave kiting in offshore's or cross-offs and being safe, ie not be dragged out to sea.
Initially when I saw some video footage and pics of people riding in these conditions I was thinking 'madness'. Then I reckoned it maybe it was okay for the pro's and if you panned out on the shots you where sure to find a support boat or jetski outback ready and waiting to pick up the pieces when it all goes wrong. Or possibly at the first sign of trouble they just dump the kite and paddle back to shore, to dial their sponsors and ask for another batch of 9m's to be FedEx'd their way.
Now I'm thinking maybe I should consider riding cross off's and the very least and self rescue is possible. Providing I stay within the break (me and kite that is) I'm no more at risk then any other direction as the power of the surf alone will send me, my board, and kite back to the beach either together or seperately regardess of wind direction.
Obviously in flat water an offshore etc is a definate no no, but what about waves (meaning solid beach break surf in reasonable winds, not 3ft shorebreak and 45knots) is it do-able?
What do you think? or is my surf lust getting the better of me?
In the end I answered the question myself; I had an epic session yesterday in cross-off conditions with head high, to head and a half surf. I watched my angles at all times to make sure I could always body drag or self rescue back to the far end of the beach if necessary.
The learning curve for me is; I dont think I can say its safe or not safe in cross off as there's too many variables at play, its really about waying up the risks and conditions for yourself each time you go out ,and deciding if they're acceptable.
I really enjoyed my session as the quality of waves due to the cross-offshore wind was insane in comparison to the same break in onshore winds..... truely my best session ever! which has left me gagging to do it again as soon as I can.
Personally I'm so glad I pushed myself to try it! As for Directly Off-Shore Winds; for me right now I think its still to risky without cover,
I kite in offshore winds. But Its not in the Ocean. Its in the bay, and I can walk across the whole thing, but maybe not in a straight line. I hear alot of flack about wanting to ride that spot in the offshore winds. For me its so fun, the water is flat as can be, and the wind comes straight off the ocean, just to come over a small sand dune. Its not very gusty, and the launch is easy one you do it a few times. I have gotin caught downwind, and just landed my kite on a sand bar, and walked in. As for ridin in the ocean, I think I'll pass. I think that is a horrible Idea. I don't even think side off conditions are anything to play with. Unless you have a ski to come an get ya..... I would think twice. Imagine you make a mistake, and the Coasty's have to come get ya. Looks bad for everyone, but even worse for yourself. I have found that anything can happen, and to me its at the worst times.