I arrived to 8 knots wind and in my wind shadow launch it took me an hour to get it up. I kept yanking the front lines running back 10 meters, which was all the room I had, then dragging the kite back and trying again. Each attempt inflated the kite better and better, until it was standing up completely on its trailing edge, at which point I got it in the air. I can see why people use leaf blowers.
The wind was blowing 6 to 7 kts and I flew it around, playing with the backstall and the turning. I was getting a little wing tip collapse at first during turns but I got better at avoiding them by keeping the kite moving and turning before the kite got to the edge of the window. When the wind increased to 8 kts and above I no longer had any collapse even on slack lines.
With the kite just stationary in the window It did not pull at all, but with even slow movement it would drag me along, so I was very conservative.
When I was ready for the water the wind jumped to 12 kts, normally 8.5 meter cloud weather but I wanted to try my new kite. Getting up on my 880 cm ketos wing was easy, but I couldn't handle the power once I got up, I kept having to point downwind to get control back. I ended up riding with the kite at 11:30, almost all my weight in the harness, playing with the trim, which I am unfamiliar with.
On the beach later I was told I should have used as much depower as possible in those conditions.
I missed every jibe trying to bring the kite over 12, but when I looped it I was able to make it around. Even slacking all four lines the kite stayed stable.
One issue I had was I kept popping the quick release accidentally. I kept grabbing it and putting it back together before the kite hit the water, but looking back, I wonder why I was able to grab it. Once, it went to the fifth line, hit the water with upwind current in a ball. I had to swim for maybe 30 seconds downwind to get my foil. I sat on my foil grabbed both back lines and it opened a little, enough for the wind to catch it and bring it back down wind of me. Once it got back to the window I reversed launched it just like the videos.
I was nervous about landing in 13 kts wind but I prepared myself mentally to pull the release during a face plant and backstalled it from 12. As it started to come down from 90 to 60 degrees it accelerated and scared me with its pull. I pulled harder, following instructions to "commit" and it suddenly partially collapsed and fell the last 60 softly to the ground.
I am super happy with this kite, already considering a 12 meter. No way I could have kept my 17m Cloud in the air, or even come close to launching it.
When I rolled up my lines I discovered the possible reason for my chicken loop probems.