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So with the wind dying at Alameda I am hoping to continue progressing but not sure if I am quite ready to make the move to 3rd yet. I just wanted to see what people's thoughts were on 3rd Ave for beginners. I taken lessons and been out numerous times on my own. That being said I guess I am a slow learner.... I can get up on the board but am still working on staying up for long periods of time, edging, and going upwind. I am very comfortable with body dragging.
I am getting a little frustrated with the dying wind in Alameda and would like to continue to improve over the rest of the summer. I only have a 12m (Cabrinha...not bright yellow though ). Given my kite and experience described above would 3rd Ave be a good fit?
Feel free to come talk to me, I'm at 3rd almost everyday and I can give you some pointers about 3rd.
I would encourage you to try third - the wind is much better and you will progress faster. There are a lot of us, me included, who did the same as you - learned the basics at Alameda and then moved to third for the consistent wind. There are a number of older discussion threads on this topic.
From what you describe, you may already have sufficient skills and knowledge to try third - but at a minimum definitely talk to Sonny and others to get the lay of the land before going out. Everyone is very helpful. Also read up on the local info on this website. Finally, another option is to take a lesson at third if $$ is not an issue.
Enjoy and see you out there--
Same for me. Just finished three days of lessons with Jeff Kafka and Brennan at wowkites. Can get up and go but not upwind. Was out today in mid 20s wind and felt great, want to try out my new Slingshot Key 10M at 3rd. Jeff recommended I go out first without the board and practice dragging upwind, I can't retrieve a lost board yet the jetskis did it for me!
Sonny and others, I'll look for you tomorrow Sat hopefully.
Yesterday was my first time at 3rd Ave, and it proved to be abit of an experience. To start, it was flooding which might have been part of my problem.
I decided to fly a 9m instead of 11m because windalert said it was blowing 22 mph. However it seemed most people out there were still on 11 and 12s, so perhaps I was underpowered? Hard to believe.
Anyway, I have had no problem going upwind and staying powered in a past session out at Treasure Island, but I couldn't stay up worth a damn yesterday. The swells were much larger then i'm used to, and it was the first time i've flown this kite (just purchased it for high wind situations), so all these things probably went together into my issues. I ended up having a rather forceful crash and lost my board and was absolutely unable to get back to it. It seemed the more I body dragged towards it, the father away it got...and I have quite abit of experience getting my board back due to losing it often. A good samaritan kiter saw my waving my arm and yelling "board" and grabbed it for me. Thank you whoever you are! it was hundreds of feet from me at this point, and I was just passing the wind surfer launching area. I got back on the board and headed full tilt for the beach, not wanting to miss it and have a seriously long walk. At that point I accidently let the kite slip into the wind shadow and it fell like a rock. I tried to relaunch, but with zero wind where I was all I was doing was pulling the kite towards me and getting tangled in my own lines. At this point I wasn't sure if the tide would push me towards the beach, or miss it...and I made a decicion to just swim for the rocky wall next to the Mosh pit. It was embarrassing as hell, but I climbed up the rocks, and put my gear away.
I'll definitely be back, but it was certainly not a heartening first experience at 3rd Ave. Thanks again to whoever saved my board and i apologize for the unorthadox location I ended the ride on.
Congrats on getting out to 3rd, and unorthadox or not, at least you made it in safe. Perhaps it would be a good idea to head out body dragging first when trying a new location, new conditions at a familiar location, or new equipment, to make sure you can get upwind. Maybe even carry out a big stick or plank of wood to throw upwind and simulate retrieving your board with the current considered. Once you're satisfied, head back in for your shredding stick. Then you just lose a chunk of wood.
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Glad to hear you made it back in one piece and welcome to 3rd! Your experience sounds precisely like my first several experiences at 3rd. I don't think you're doing anything wrong here. I actually think if you talk to anyone on the beach at 3rd you'll find it's pretty common. So in my opinion, nothing to be embarrassed about.
A thread or two back discussing kiting at third for beginners or not said something about having beginners slogging through the advanced area being a problem. I want to say I think this is BS. Anyone good enough to launch and fly the lower launch isn't going to have an issue going around a beginner limping his way in to the lower launch. Ignore this advice, don't feel bad embarrassed, it's just a natural part of the learning experience.
Couple of tips - I don't know what you weigh, but a 9m sounds small especially given the wind graphs from 3rd lately, so I think that definitely contributed to it. Try a larger kite - just make sure it's de-powered on land. You're right on about flooding vs. ebbing. It's easier to stay upwind at 3rd on an ebb. In light wind flood conditions I know a lot of people (including myself) that are medium/advanced kiters that won't go out - it's not worth the effort it requires to stay upwind.
Stay at it and the rewards will be worth it. As you know by now, if you are heading near the lower launch, keep the kite high - never go below 11 or 1. Just move the kite up there. Generating power in this zone might take skills you don't have yet - so just practice it when you are presented with the chance .
Don't take Thursday as a "typical" 3rd session. The flooding was a factor. The wind was good enough for me to ride a 10m in its sweet spot, but I should have been on my 12m instead - I was constantly working the 10 to try to get something going.
A second factor was the chop. Maybe I was just tired, but the chop seemed way too rough and erratic for the wind that was generating it.
Huh, well that is good to know. I was under the impression that high teens and low 20s were too much for 11-12m kites...thats the whole reason I went ahead and purchased the 9m. I find myself alittle confused as to which kite to fly if that 20+ wind at 3rd Avenue was supposedly best with my 11m.
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