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I am a beginner, started out earlier in the season at Alameda. But it's really hard to get a good wind day out there now so have been checking out 3rd.
I have body dragged twice at 3rd so far just to get to know the area a bit more. As I body dragged down wind both times my kite dropped after the bend passing the red flag. I tried to water relaunch the kite and failed both times. I did everything I learned in class. (while the leading edge down I kept tension in the front lines and pull on one of the side lines and wait for the kite to stand up on the side and drift to the edge of the window for re-launch) But the kite just would not stand up, drift, and take off.
First time it was low tideso I was able to be pulled back to the lower landing. Second time it was total high tide and without being able to re-launch or set foot down, I drifted with the kite to the rocks. Luckily both the Kite and I are okay.
I was able to water re launch my kite at Alameda before with ease.
So my first question is if there are some thing I missed or tips for re-launching at this site?
And in the unfortunate event of not being able to do so and being blow towards the rocks again what are some of the measures I can take to prevent kite being chewed up.
I am using a 10M Ocean Rodeo Razor.
First: wind shadow behind the golf course (lower launch) so unless you are used to it, it's gonna take some skills to relaunch behind it.
Second: if you are a beginner and it's high tide, you better off doing a self rescue and get back to your kite quickly before it hits the rocks.
Kites: 2014 F-One Bandit VII: 12m, 10m and 8m. All pink/blue.
Board: 2014 F-One Spicy & 5'6 Fish.
Harness: Manera Exoharness.
Wetsuit: Underwave Sultan shortleg 4/3.
I saw you on the high tide day and you are very lucky that you did not tear up your kite. Feel free to come talk to me and I can give you some pointers.
1) smart thing for beginners to do is stay away from high tide...if you miss the lower launch area, basically no easy way to get out of the water. There are free tide charts available; app for iPhone
2) with wind blowing side on at third (wnw/nw), there will be a wind shadow. the closer your are to the rock past the red flag the worse it gets; the water level is about 15' below the top of the rocks/path. There is another 15' from the parking lot to the gold course.
3) because the wind comes thru the golf course nets, it is not clean. You need to keep your kite high and most often keep it moving
4) usually best to keep a bit of tension on your back lines. if the bar is pushed out alot, your kite will move towards the edge of the wind quite ofter fall. When light, and you have too much tension on the back lines, the kite will have a tendency to back up and stall, and fall; need to push the bar away to take tension off the back/outside lines.
4) not all kites relaunch the same exact way. sometimes it's best to let go of your bar and pull on the outside line to relaunch...experiment. In the manner you can relaunch your kite "hotter" but don't worry, as you are not holding the bar the kite will depower after relaunch and you can grab your bar.
Lotsa of things to think about...hope this helps. Good idea to take Sonny up on his offer. Welcome to third
kite the north launch. easier to get out. easier to get back in. no wind shadow to mess around with. and there's usually a lot of people to help you launch/land... a lot! : p
I rarely take off from the south launch and when i do its because i have to get a kite repaired and i'm already there, or there's a bbq going on
Get in the habit of talking to some regulars any time you visit a new site or a difficult site you're still not completely familiar with. Tides and wind shadows are a huge factor at many advanced sites.
If you come in downwind at lower launch, you very likely will drop the kite, and if you can't touch the bottom, you're in for a battle against what little wind there is pulling you toward the rocks. There's almost no way you're getting that kite relaunched in the wind shadow so don't even try. This is where some good self rescue practice at Alameda really pays off. I try to wind up my lines as I kick swim a little toward the beach.
I wasn't so lucky my first on-the-rocks experience, and don't have much desire to repeat that ever.
A little off-topic but this suddenly got me thinking, if you can reverse launch a three-line trainer kite, would it possible to reverse-relaunch an inflatable kite that has landed leading edge down by pulling both back lines in a few feet until in backflys?
When it comes to keeping your kite off of rocks, your bar/line-wrapping skills become vital. All kiters practice their bar/lines wrapping skills when putting their bar away post session. It quickly becomes part of the routine. When wrapping lines during a self-rescue situation, the line-wrapping routine is not much different other than beginning the necessary line wraps with the line(s) that ensure the kite stays down on the water. Watch your kite as you perform your routine wraps. You may need to wrap one or two lines more than the others to keep the kite down on the water. This will create the "5th line effect"
When you come to the rock, the lines are wrapped up, and you're ready to ascend the rocks. You have the option of:
1. Keeping the kite inflated and using the breeze to keep the kite lifted off the rocks,
2. De-flating and folding the kite to carry it up.
Wrapping lines around the bar in deep water can feel awkward when compared to being on land. You don't have to be as neat and orderly as you do in our post-sessoin clean-up. Doing it in a timely fashion will ensure that you're getting your hands on your kite before it contacts the rocks.
The cove at the upper launch on a high tide is a great place to practice this. Learn to control your kite while it's on the water!
Yup, depends on the kite but my Addictions do this quite well. The trick it to grab the back lines way up high (you may even want to let out the trip strap), yank in on one hand but push the bar away. One the kite is flying backwards, let go of one back line, wait a few seconds, the let go of the other and you'll steer out of it. If you're close to rocks try and work out which back line needs tension to steer the kite away from them. Hint: when the kite is upside down it might not be the one you think it is If you're kite doesn't stall and fly backwards then this probably won't work for you.
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