Had a shitty run in with a guy yesterday while kiting. I don't care how nice, courteous, or good you are at playing goodwill ambassador for the sport, you just can't make everyone happy. Some people are just douche nozzles and like to be difficult. Yesterday's incident was rather unfortunate for our kitegroup as we've never had a run in with anyone up here while kiting.
Here's the recap:
Yesterday was blowing a nice 25 SW from 1 to 7pm. It was great. Myself and 3 of my friends were able to sherk our work for the day and go ride. Our spot for SW is a cool little finger/sand bar that sticks out about 50 yards from shore. On the northern side of the bar it's about 2 feet deep and awesome white sand that reaches out another 50 yards forming a nice area. It's really a cool place. We rig on the bar and ride out into the main lake. It's fun to come back behind the bar for smooth water for powered jumps and jibes. This place is also a nice swim/picnic area, but as mentioned, this is a pretty desolate place and there's not tons of room.
So we setup and rode for about 2 hours. Wind was cooperating and the temp was 94 degrees. It was turning out to be an awesome day. Three of us were in grabbing a quick beer and bite to eat while one of my friends was out trying my new 12m. So the three of us are sitting on the bar watching our friend ride and tacking back to the bar/ calm water where we were sitting. All of the sudden this fishing boat full of people comes up from the southern part of the bar and actually accelerates to cut off our friend riding in. We were kind of like wtf? Then the fishing boat pulls in the middle of the calm area and drops anchor. We look at each other and think well this is right where we are riding, we should ask him to move. So me and another guy approach the boat and calmly/politely ask the guy if he wouldn’t mind moving the boat to the north side of the bar or slightly west (by the other boats). The guy doesn’t even look at us. We then state, we don’t mind sharing the bar but it will just be safer for him, his family and us if there isn’t a boat downwind of where we are riding. Again no response. The guy was completely blowing us off. So we went back to the bar and just waited. The guy took his dog out for a quick swim while his family just waited in the boat. So after a half hour of him just wading around, he walks up to us and says “You know you guys don’t own this land, this is state land for everyone to use.”
We calmly replied “We’re fully aware of that. We weren’t asking you leave, we just didn’t want to have the boat parked there so not to create a hazard for us AND your family. We’re happy to share the spot if you guys want to swim and hang out, it’s just the boat that’s the issue.”
He replies “I shouldn’t have to move. You need to be able to control your equipment. We shouldn’t have to adjust to you guys, you guys have the entire lake to ride on. Why do you need to take up this entire spot?”
So obviously this guy is clueless as far as anything kiteboarding goes, so we try to explain that we needed the area to setup and to land. (the lake is 100% surrounded by forest)
He still wasn’t having any of it. He fires off “Well I was here last year and some guys were out here doing the same thing and they told us we have to move from a different spot on the lake so they could ride. You guys don’t own the lake!”
So now we’re kind of laughing a little. We are really the only kiters up here, this was total bullshit. We’re not hooligans by any means. (anymore) I’m 36, one guy 47 and the other two over 50. We’re not mouthy A-holes that would just tell someone they need to leave. Anything we were going to say wasn’t going to change anything so we just walked away. So the dude shakes his head and leaves.
Were we wrong in asking him to move his boat and family? I know this doesn’t mean much, but we were quite obviously there first. If we pulled up and there was people swimming, kayaking or snorkeling the spot, we wouldn’t just barge in and claim the spot. So this guy was obviously having a bad day or was getting hen pecked in the boat all day and needed to vent on someone.
Oh well………..we rode until almost dark and enjoyed a few beers afterward. I’m calling it a win.