Thursday, April 20, 2017

Day 27 of the 2017 season: Last day of the OBX trip with a surprise ending

Didn't think it was gonna happen today but by 2 it looked surprising doable. So I rigged my 13 Z and took out the Duke board and had some fun. Then it picked up so I got the TT out and for the rest of the day, up until sunset I was on the TT carving, jumping, doing 180 ollies.  As the sun was low on the horizon I jumped over it. So if you were standing on the land it appeared that I jump over the setting sun....LoL...
14 out of 19 days on the water  - not a bad OBX trip for 2017.
Year after year the OBX produces the best bang for the buck.

TOB:  2:00 - 3:00 13M and Duke directional board. 3:00 - 4:30 TT. 5:30 - 8:00 13M and TT
Gear: 13M Z Kite, Duke directional and TT boards
Water Conditions: flat to SW small swell
Weather:  mid-70s, sunny
Wind:  15-25 SSW
Highlights: Fun boosts, direction board fun and hard carving with the TT board on the overpowered 13M.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Day 26 of the 2017 season: Near Epic NE slick action

At two o'clock I tried to windsurf with my 4.5M sail and found it uncomfortably overpowered. Harry sailed his 5.0 and did well. Waited for the wind to slack off a bit and maybe get more north in it.
But that didn't happen. So time to kite, I walked out to the wind line to set an anchor. Lots of sandbar areas exposed due to the strong winds. Set an anchor and rigged the 6.5M kite. After launching I still had to walk nearly another 100 yards to find deep enough water to launch.
Once underway I easily worked my way upwind to the shallow slicks and enjoyed the butter for almost 2 hours. Up to 6 other kiters were also at the slicks.

Low water in the sound with a northeast wind of 20-30 mph


TOB:  5:00 - 6:30
Gear: 6.5 M LF kite and TT
Water Conditions: sound side slicks
Weather:  mid-60s, sunny
Wind:  20-35 NE
Highlights: Hard carving, boosting, jumping with board grabs and 180 ollies toeside and heelside.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Day 25 of the 2017 season: EPIC nearly a CC of Easter Sunday's EPIC day

The headliner says it all,"EPIC CC of Easter Sunday's EPIC day"
Only thing better was I had the 6.5 kite working for few hours.

TOB:  8:00 - 9:30 morning, 12:00 - 3:30 afternoon, 6:00 - 7:30 evening downwinder
Gear: 9M Z kite TT and  6.5 M LF kite with Directional and TT, 9M used in the downwinder
Water Conditions:  Typical sound side with a classic warm southwester
Weather:  Sunny, mid-70s all day
Wind:  SW 20 - 35 SW all day
Highlights: Big boosts, big ollies,  heelside to toeside getting it done.

Doesn't look like 20-30 mph but it is.  Practically one giant slick on the inside at LQ

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Session 24 of the 2017 season: Happy Easter Sunday with EPIC conditions

EPIC three session day, pre-breakfast, afternoon post lunch and evening downwinder from Salvo. With EPIC 9M conditions all day.

TOB:  8:00 - 9:00 mourning, 12:00 - 2:00 afternoon, 5:00 - 7:00 evening downwinder
Gear: 9M Z kite TT
Water Conditions:  Typical sound side with a classic warm southwester
Weather:  Sunny, mid-70s all day
Wind:  20 - 30 SW and then the evening downwind session up to 40 mph
Highlights: Big boosts, big ollies,  heelside to toeside practice is going good.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Session 23 of the 2017 season: Side off SE winds 20-30 made it a bad launch day

Todays Highlights: Bad launch with side off SE winds 20-30 mph and gusty.
Two hours of this wasn't much fun, although boosting at times was good especially during a gust. 

  2:30 - 4:30
Gear: 11M Z1 and TT
Water Conditions:  SE swell on the outside
Weather:  Sunny near 70 degrees
Wind: SE side off and gusty 20-30 mph
Highlights: Nothing much to say except a horrible launch on the inside. Kites were dropping like bombs trying to launch.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Session 22 of the 2017 season: EPIC sound side marathon session Windsurfing and Kiteboarding

Epic all around side off conditions on the sound in Waves/Rodanthe area. Basically one big shallow slick for miles with some nice organized small swell in the deeper sections.
Everyone had a good time kiting and windsurfing.

TOB: Windsurf from 12:00-1:00 kited 2:00-6:00 included downwinder         
Gear:  5.7M sail with 100 liter and 9M Z kite with TT
Water Conditions:  side off NNE, basically one big slick
Weather:  60ish, 100% sunny
Wind:  NNE to 30 mph
Highlights:  WS, Some full planning jibes and fast tacks with Harry and Larry. KB, Toeside 180 ollies to heelside, a ton of practice with several good landings,
At 5:00 did a downwinder to Salvo with Chris, Bob, Craig and I

Dinner, drinks and BS

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Session 21 of the 2017 season: A steady marginal session on the directional board

Not much of a session, just enough to make the 13M work with the bigger directional board.
Lot of mowing and a hard fought trip up to the harbor slick for a few turns there in the smooth water.
That's it not much else happen.

KHK wind data April 12

TOB: 3:30-5:30
Gear:  13M Z kite and Mako Duke directional board
Water Conditions:  lite wind chop
Weather:  lower 70s, sunny
Wind:  SSW under 20 mph
Highlights: A steady marginal session, fought my way upwind and played in the harbor slick.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Session 20 of the 2017 season: Field Trip to Jockey's Ridge, Didn't want to miss this day

A near epic day at Jockey's Ridge. After missing out of yesterday's suggested Jockey's Ridge session I wanted to make sure I hit this one. With winds in the 20-30 mph range my 9 M was at the high end of it's range.
Fantastic swells on the outside and crowded flats on the inside - today had it all.

TOB: 2:30-4:30
Gear:  9M Z kite on TT
Water Conditions:  from flat at inside shallows to nice carving swells outside
Weather:  gorgeous mid-70s, bluebird
Wind:  20-30 from the south
Highlights:  Near epic conditions, with Chris, Craig, Bob, Dan, Larry, Debbie and a few more from Michigan. Kite sizes ranged from 7 to 12 M. Loftiness, carving, ollies, all moves were working excellent with the easy conditions.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Session 19 of the 2017 season: First day at Liquid Rush, early morning kite session

Bluebird cold morning starting out near 50 degrees with marginal winds.
Rigged the 13Z and rode in marginal winds and flat water until noon.
A change of pace from the last 2 days of high wind 6.5 conditions.
Chris, Bob, Craig and I launched from their rental

TOB: 10:00 - 12:00
Gear: 13 Z with TT and directional board
Water Conditions: Typical OBX in lite wind conditions
Weather: Bluebird, cold lower to mid-50s
Wind: WNW 10-20
Highlights: Surprised to get out

Friday, April 7, 2017

Session 18 of the 2017 season: Waiting for a lull to kite with the 6.5

TOB: 12:00 - 2:00
Gear:  6.5 LF solo kite and TT board
Water Conditions:  onshore chop
Weather:  mostly cloudy mid-50s
Wind:  20-30 mph generally west
Highlights:  Air time, ollies, slick carving and toe to heel ollies

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Session 17 of the 2017 season: Cold, chilly day with relentless westery winds - slicks are howling

TOB: 12:00 - 2:00
Gear: 6.5 LF with TT
Water Conditions: On shore choppy conditions
Weather: Mostly cloudy, mid-50s
Wind: WNW - WSW-WNW 20-30 mph
Highlights: Action in the slicks

Another onshore 20-40 mph day, waited for a lull 20-30 mph lull that is.
Rigged the 6.5 for the second day in a rowmand headed straight for the slick.
Enjoyed boosting, carving, olliling, and slashing in flat water.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Session 16 of the 2017 season: Early windsurfing session to real slick, afternoon on 9M kite session at the slick

First time ever windsurfing on a glassy slick...with easy carving and full planning jibes.
Early sesh with the WS to the slick, took a break and then 9M kiting to the slick
   9:00 - 10:30 WS with 5.0M and 100 liter, 12:30 - 2:00 KB with 9M and TT. 2:00 - 3:00 kited with directional board.
Gear:    5.0M/100 liter and 9M/TT and strapped directional board
Water Conditions:  typical  sound side
Weather:    Blue bird mid-60s all day
Wind:   WSW to SW  20-30 mph
Highlights: Slick action with the windsurfer

Monday, April 3, 2017

Session 15 of the 2017 season:Cloudy evening to last light session

Calm all day with the wind forecasted to pick up in the late afternoon.
Harry braved it and went out WS,  ripping it up out at the wind line, a few other kiters were soon out.
Finally rigged my 11M Z1 and bee lined it up to the slick for a few quick runs, flukier winds there due to wind direction, but workable. We rode beyond last light.
Craig, Mr. I'll never ride in the dark, and I enjoyed the session. Beers in the hot tub to finished the night.

TOB:   6:30-8:00
Gear:    11M/TT 
Water Conditions:  Typical sound side
Weather:    cloudy evening with mid-50s temperatures
Wind:   SSE to 30 mph, side off
Highlights: Dark session with early darkness due to a cloudy sunset

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Session 14 of the 2017 season: Opening Day in OBX a combo day of Kiting and Windsurfing

Sunday 4/2/10 - First day out on our first day in OBX
Morning session on the 9M with side off winds. Sketching launching on the inside at our rental "Water Lily" in Waves. We made it work and kited for an hour and a half in somewhat gusty conditions. Later in the afternoon rigged up the 5.0 Ezzy and windsurfed with the 100 liter board.
Good day overall, windsurfing is hard

TOB:   10:30 - 12:00 kite and 2:30-3:30 5.0 WS
Gear:    9M/TT and 5M 100 liter
Water Conditions:  Typical
Weather:    Bluebird, chilly day with mid-50s temperatures
Wind:   NNE 10-30, side off
Highlights: First day of our OBX trip with Craig, Larry, and Harry

Friday, March 24, 2017

Session 13 of the 2017 season: Opening day for me at my home launch

Metrobeach with it's dirty water and dooming effect came alive today.
I barely saw a whitecap the entire 2.5 hours but the wind was up high.
With the temperatures nearing the mid-60s all of the warm air rose above the cold stable water surface.
Overall not a bad day, had some periods of working hard to get back upwind from the beach area. Not the steadiest of winds but fun lofting the kite and slashing a few swells. There was about a dozen kiters on kite sizes 11 thru 17M.

TOB:  1:30 - 4:00 non-stop                  
Gear:    11M Z1 and TT
Water Conditions:  hardly a white cap 
Weather:   mid-60s with thin overcast
Wind:  up high within the 11M range
Highlights:  floating boosts

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Session 12 of the 2017 Snowkite Season: Island Park Idaho - whiteouts and blustery conditions

Whiteout conditions in howling winds

Craig and decided to take the day off from Big Sky snowboarding to indulge in some snowkiting.
The wind forecast looked good for snowkiting at Island Park and not good for snowboarding at Big Sky.  (Too windy).
So we hit up the Island  Park area, rigged our 9M kites and rode out in poor visibility. Occasional we would see some sunlight which enabled us to see the terrain. We did locate a drop off we were warned about, which was actually a hill shaped like a wave. Riding on this terrain was a change from snow covered lake riding. The hill could actually be ridden like a wave, carving on top and then riding down hill and carving a bottom turn. Did that a few times until the light got bad again and couldn't make out the hill, (wave) from the horizon.
Finally a snow squall blasted through dropping heavy snow with whiteout conditions and increasing the wind speeds to beyond my 9M limits. We both struggle to get in and land our kites in the estimated 40+ mph squall.
Overall a wet, poor visibility day  - not highly rated for sure. The brief runs on the wave were different and fun but that was about it.

  1:00 - 2:15
Gear:    9M Z and Burton Board
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions)   Wind blown snow on a solid base, some wind scoured spots
Weather:   cloudy, snow, blowing snow, drifting snow and whiteouts, 30-35 degrees
Wind:  mainly southern winds 20-40 mph
Highlights: wide open, hilly terrain at 6500 feet above sea level, poor visibility, white out conditions and too windy during a snow squall.

TRACK snowkite island park Saturday 3/4
MAX SPEED 20.18 mph
SKI DISTANCE 11.00 miles

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Session 11 of the 2017 snowkite season: Island Park Idaho - the sun is shining

Wind blown conditions on a meadow near Island Park Idaho
Craig and I decided to take a day off from riding Big Sky and do some snowkiting.
Took a suggestion from Kyle and headed to Island Park just across the Idaho border.
There we found meadows of snow covered terrain to kite on. The hills were a treat - I never kited up or down hills before. The snow conditions were near excellent with wind blown powder and plenty of it. Mostly sunny conditions with blowing and drifting snow  

  1:00 - 3:00
Gear:    11M Z1 and Burton Board
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions)   Wind blown snow up to 10 inches deep on a solid base
Weather:   Mostly sunny, blowing, drifting snow 15-20 degrees
Wind:  mainly southern winds 20-30 mph
Highlights: wide open  hilly terrain at 6500 feet above sea level

TRACK snow kite island park Idaho
MAX SPEED 22.34 mph
SKI DISTANCE 20.56 miles

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Session 10 of the 2017 snowkite season: Cass Lake better then expected

  2:45 - 5:00 (2 hours and 15 minutes)
Gear:   13M Z kite
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions)  wind blown packed snow
Weather:  overcast/hazy day near 30 degrees
Wind: winds to 20 from the S-SW
Highlights: better then expected session, some good boosting and carving, looping the kite during the lulls

TRACK snowkite Sass Lake 2/4     
MAX SPEED: 19.30 mph
SKI DISTANCE: 21.84 miles

Chris making it work with a 9M on a 13M day

Friday, February 3, 2017

Session 9 of the 2017 snowkite season: Overpowered on Orchard Lake

Nice to be out on a rare bluebird day

TOB:  2:00 - 3:15 (1 hour and 15 minutes)
Gear:   11M Z1 kite
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions)  wind blown packed snow
Weather:  Bluebird day near 22 degrees
Wind: winds to 30 from the WNW
Highlights:  Nice to kite with sunshine. Nice snow conditions, overpowered on my 11, should of rigged the 9 or 6.5.

TRACK snowkite orchard lake 2/3
MAX SPEED: 18.04 mph
AVERAGE SPEED: 11.73 mph
DISTANCE: 12.30 miles

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Session 8 of the 2017 snowkite season: Lake Leelanau with nearly bottomless hard packed conditions

Decided to head over to Lake Leelanau due to scarce coverage on Little Glen Lake.
Found snow conditions 100 % better there. Two days ago I noticed the radar showed several hours of LE snow falling over the northern part of the peninsula. I found snow depths up to 10 inches of heavy snow, not easily blown away by he winds. No bare spots, even coverage seemingly across the entire lake. Occasionally during a hard carve the base or ice could be felt.
Five other kiters were out kites ranging from 10-12 M.

TOB: 11:45-2:15
Gear:  13M Z Kite with Burton Hero board
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions)  Fresh heavy powder 4-10 inches
Weather: Grey day, lite snow, near 30 degrees
Wind: NW 10-25 mph, drifting snow
Highlights: Almost bottomless. A heavy snowfall in the warmer temps made the snow a heavy packed powder. Another lofty, lifty day. Excellent carving in the seemingly bottomless heavy

TRACK L Leelanaw 2/1
MAX SPEED: 24.53 mph
DISTANCE: 27.33 miles

Monday, January 30, 2017

Session 7 of the 2017 Snowkite season: Crystal Lake with the bare minimum of snow

TOB: 2:30 - 3:45
Gear:  13M Z Kite with Burton Hero board
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions)  fresh powder 2-3 inches,  on top of smooth ice, just barely enough
Weather: cloudy,  20ish degrees
Wind: steady 12 - 18 from the south, some drifting snow on occasion
Highlights: lite wind with low friction, made it worked

Not to much hard carving with 2-3 inches of fresh snow on a solid plate of smooth ice.

TRACK Crystal Lake Snowkite 1/30
MAX SPEEP: 20.94 mph
SKI DISTANCE: 15.24 miles

Good lift at times

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Session 6 of the 2017 Snowkite season: Freshsie day on Lake Mitchell

Not much snow in the Empire area so I went with where I know conditions were doable. Lake Mitchell, nearly a 60 minute drive from Empire.
I drove through the Cadillac area 2 days earlier during a heavy snow fall and I saw a lot of snow cover on Lake Mitchell and the surrounding area.
So I did the drive and arriving at the launch site I found the conditions were nearly excellent. Solid WNW winds and excellent snow cover. No bare spots, yes you could scrap down to the ice during a hard carve.
Overall a great day with 5 minutes of sun to nearly vertigo conditions in whiteouts. Excellent snow cover on the lake with more snow in the forecast.

11 M Z1 kite and Burton Hero board

TOB: 2pm - 5 pm
Gear:  11M Z1 and Burton board
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions) 3-6 inches of fresh, untracked snow, heavier then normal
Weather: mid-20s sunny to whiteouts
Wind: NW 10-25
Highlights:  Excellent conditions, no bare spots, although during some hard carving some ice could be felt

Brief period of sunlight
TRACK Lake Mitchell  Snowkite 1/28
MAX SPEED: 19.74 mph
SKI DISTANCE: 24.23 miles

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Session 4 of the 2017 Snowkite season: Lil' Glen snowkite

A bare minimum session, wind came up briefly and dropped off quickly.

TOB: 3:00 - 4:00 (1 hour)
Gear:  13M Z kite
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions) packed drifted snow (0-8 inches), with many wind scoured bare spots
Weather: bluebird day mid- 20s
Wind: 10 - 20 mph from then WSW
Highlights: new angle for Go-Pro camera

Carving? up the snowpack

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Session 3 of the 2017 Snowkite season: Lil' Glen snowkite

Bluebird day with drifted packed powder

TOB: 1:15-4:45 (3.5 hours)
Gear:  13M Z kite
Water Conditions:  (snow conditions) packed drifted snow (0-8 inches), with many wind scoured bare spots
Weather: bluebird day mid- 20s
Wind: 12-22 from then WSW
Highlights: Kited with Pete Fisher a local from the Glen Arbor area.

Brent Smith acquired some drone footage that should be interesting.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Session 2 of the 2017 Snowkite season: Fresh snow cover on Lil Glen Lake

Gear can get buried quickly with all of the blowing snow. 24 hours ago this was rock hard bare ice.

Nearly epic snowkite conditions, fresh 2-8 inches drifting snow. Sometimes you'd scrap the ice below the snow, other than that it was a powdery, quiet ride.

TOW:  (Time on the snow) one hour and forty five minutes from 3:00 - 4:45
Gear:   11 M Z1 and TT
Surface Conditions:  3-8 inches of freshies with no base
Weather: finally I can see some sunlight, 26 degrees and dropping
Wind: west to 30 mph
Highlights:  nice smooth dryer powder - just 24 hours ago this was down to bare ice.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Session 1 of the 2017 Snowkite season: Fresh snow for a snowkite session on Crystal Lake

After tracking out Crystal Mt in the heavy freshies I headed over to Crystal Lake to do the same.
Rigged up the 11M Z1 and rode from 12 - 1 in moderate snow changing to a soaking rain.         
A full on grey and white day luckily after a few tracks through the freshies I added some contrast so I could see much better. Moderate to marginal wind conditions. Fresh snow on top of a base in most spots. Some chunky pack ice below some of the snow - overall a fun soaking session.    

Snow changed over to rain

24 hours later all of the snowpack is gone - bare ice remains

TOW:  (Time on the snow) Barely made it from 12:00 - 1:00
Gear:   11 M Z1 and TT
Surface Conditions:  3-8 inches of freshies with some base in most areas
Weather: 32 and rising degrees with moderate snow changing to all rain
Wind: SE to 15-19 mph
Highlights:  nice smooth powder, although wet and getting heavy as the temperature rises

TRACK Crystal Lake Snowkite 1/30
MAX SPEED: 20.94 mph
SKI DISTANCE: 15.24 miles