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Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

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Beardytello
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Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby Beardytello » Mon Oct 15, 2018 12:47 pm

Found this today (apologies if it's already been posted)

I love Anton's advice, his edging / jumping vids are quality.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=foHSB2EcqMU

phpBB [video]

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby Archer77 » Mon Oct 15, 2018 2:01 pm

yes all great videos!

:thumb:

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby matth » Mon Oct 15, 2018 2:06 pm

Good advice. Being overpowered can get scary, knowing what to do is critical. I find punching out in shallow water the safest remedy, but not always an option. Avoiding those conditions and coming in at the first signs of squalls is your best action IMO..Live to kite another day.

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby edt » Mon Oct 15, 2018 3:15 pm

Great advice but I have to add one thing: If the squall hits and you need to release, Anton never mentions this but it's much safer to pull your QR while you are still in the water! Yes your kite will get wet but pulling the QR in the water gives you a little extra margin for safety especially if there are many kiters racing back to the launch and you end up standing around with your kite in the air for a while. You have to think about releasing on the water ahead of time. If you don't remember about it and you ride straight to the launch, once you are on land it's often impossible to get back upwind into the water not only because you might not be able to get back upwind but there might be a crowd at the launch especially if the launch is small and not a huge beach.

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby vela99 » Mon Oct 15, 2018 4:12 pm

Did he not mention to trim the center lines or did I just miss it?
(For me lowering the kite to the edge of the window makes sense but in very overpowered conditions I would also trim the center lines)

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby Beardytello » Mon Oct 15, 2018 4:26 pm

vela99 wrote:
Mon Oct 15, 2018 4:12 pm
Did he not mention to trim the center lines or did I just miss it?
(For me lowering the kite to the edge of the window makes sense but in very overpowered conditions I would also trim the center lines)
Yeah, probably goes without saying though I'd imagine. If you're overpowered that's going to happen before you realise you're in trouble...maybe.

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby RickI » Mon Oct 15, 2018 6:17 pm

White squall is a term I haven't seen very often and after all these years.(1) Basically it seems to be high wind from something other than an obvious thunderstorm or cumulonimbus cloud. It seems it may be another name for a microburst. Microbursts can boost winds to 150 mph+ (130 kts.+). The vague term could also include other types of sudden high wind in the absence of obvious thunderstorm clouds of varying speeds.

The thing is, the wind can go from manageable to insanely strong in very little time, even defying proper reaction it can be so fast. Many have been hurt and killed by this worldwide for many years. Not everyone has been lofted, some have been dragged to fatal impact.

I am perplexed why he didn't say to just "pull the plug" or emergency depower the kite rather than try to edge through what might be a 100 kt. + gust?

Has he routinely edged through major gusts as high as this and has enough familiarity with them to casually recommend it to the world? In waiting to find out if it is too strong, it is very easy to wait too long to act in the seconds it can take to build. His techniques are similar to what we used with two line and early four line LEI kites in the early days to try to manage in the absence of any or at least much depower range. If you KNOW the squall won't be that strong and is within your ability to manage, why not, but we usually have no idea how strong it might be in advance. So, act early while you still can.

Best advice is always be aware via forecasts and your own good senses to act early before dangerous gusty winds arrive and pull the plug. If you see a white water line approaching, again be ready to punch out and pull the plug or emergency depower. If you're offshore, your strong swimming skills which kiters should have and impact vest should see you back to shore.


(1) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_squall
(2) https://www.weather.gov/ama/microbursts

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby edt » Mon Oct 15, 2018 6:40 pm

RickI wrote:
Mon Oct 15, 2018 6:17 pm
In waiting to find out if it is too strong, it is very easy to wait too long to act in the seconds it can take to build . . . we usually have no idea how strong it might be in advance. So, act early while you still can. . . act early before dangerous gusty winds arrive and pull the plug.
Great advice. You want to pull the QR before you get lofted, not after you are in the air!

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby Beardytello » Tue Oct 16, 2018 9:41 am

I think the advice about keeping the kite low is good for that as well, it's all situational though I guess, if you're out at sea with space, your kite is low and a massive gust hits you will (hopefully) be able to eject....if the kite is high you would get lofted.

Nothing covers all possible eventualities, it's good to have a few ideas about what to do though to reduce the risk of panic / freeze.

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Re: Anton's tips on surviving a squall.

Postby RickI » Tue Oct 16, 2018 4:30 pm

Don't kite in or near squalls, dozens of dead kiters and likely a few thousand seriously injured riders worldwide over almost 20 years support that conclusion.

If you are about to be nailed by a sneaky "white squall," hit your QR, punch out, emergency depower your kite, BEFORE the wind speed increases, changes direction, temperature seriously drops. You should have sufficient watermanship skills and have an impact vest on to help you deal with things.

People have been killed by being lofted into plain water, one very recently in Spain, in OBX, in the NW USA, etc.. We aren't ships to seek bluewater to avoid a windward shore, far from it. The kite forces and oscillations which can develop in truly high winds can get out of control very rapidly, assuming nothing breaks which can make things better or far worse. Small mistaken control inputs can induce a lofting even if you are trying to keep your kite low. Or, you just might be dragged into something, way too many kiters have been over the years.

If you have any doubts about this, please do some reading, there are hundreds of posts, articles about accidents, what happened, how to try to avoid it on this site alone. Click on https://tinyurl.com/y9w28ayt for some of them.

I was a big proponent of keeping your "kite low and going" with two line kites and traditional four line C kites with zippo to minimal depower over 15 years ago. So, this really isn't new, just that part about trying to foolishly kite through a squall which may be manageable or one that just might kill you. Or, worse this nice guy on the other side of the world who watched this video decided to keep flying through a squall and ended up killing himself or harming someone else downwind.

People seem to be losing their respect for squalls given the dozens of riders, including students (!) in front of squall from hell in Sicily recently when a guy was dragged 400 m through a vineyard. The kiting community needs to inform itself of the risks and regain that respect. You can see the video at https://www.facebook.com/kitesurfing/po ... __tn__=C-R

Stay away from squalls. Some ideas on how to do that with the more obvious variety in the second post at: viewforum.php?f=131

Beardytello wrote:
Tue Oct 16, 2018 9:41 am
I think the advice about keeping the kite low is good for that as well, it's all situational though I guess, if you're out at sea with space, your kite is low and a massive gust hits you will (hopefully) be able to eject....if the kite is high you would get lofted.

Nothing covers all possible eventualities, it's good to have a few ideas about what to do though to reduce the risk of panic / freeze.


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