Gear for the snow....

Winter snowkiting topics and locations.

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Gear for the snow....

Postby sc-surfer » Sat Oct 15, 2011 2:56 pm

Hi all,

Looking at kiting as a way to get back into the mountains. I have all the usual water kite gear and snowboarding gear. I'm wondering what pieces of kit I will need to add to be able to kite this winter.

What sort of harness are you all using with winter clothes? Any specific stuff to bring besides basic backcountry gear? Is there any reason my current all mountain snowboard and boots won't work?

I know foil kites are popular but is there any reason other than wear and tear that I cant ride my SLE bow kites in the snow?

Any really important bits of info that may not be obvious coming for my background of water kiting?

Thanks and hope to see ya in the snow this winter!!
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Gear for the snow....

Postby keithdkd » Sat Oct 15, 2011 8:20 pm

Having only gone a few times, I'm no snowkiting expert, but...

I dress just like I'm going snowboarding. Then use the same seat harness I use on the water. It has to be a bit looser, because it's going over all the bulky winter gear. (and my winter fat :D )

I use the same inflatable kite I use on the water. Foil kites are more convenient, but an inflatable is fine; careful about hard crashes. You may need to go a bit bigger in kite size.

One important caveat: the edge of a snowboard is sharper than kiteboard edges. Try not to grind your lines against them while launching, or you might cut them. Never happened to me, but I was warned.
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Postby jwest21 » Sun Oct 16, 2011 10:34 am

[quote="keithdkd"]Having only gone a few times, I'm no snowkiting expert, but...

I dress just like I'm going snowboarding. Then use the same seat harness I use on the water. It has to be a bit looser, because it's going over all the bulky winter gear. (and my winter fat )

I use the same inflatable kite I use on the water. Foil kites are more convenient, but an inflatable is fine; careful about hard crashes. You may need to go a bit bigger in kite size.

One important caveat: the edge of a snowboard is sharper than kiteboard edges. Try not to grind your lines against them while launching, or you might cut them. Never happened to me, but I was warned.[/quote]

This is great info, thanks.

Have you been in the Tahoe region or did you go elsewhere? Doesn't seem like Tahoe would have many beginner areas, perhaps if you were already a highly skilled kiteboarder and snowboarder. Any lesson suggestions? I might get a chance to head out to Utah and get some lessons there too if anyone has any experience working with instructors.
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Gear for the snow....

Postby keithdkd » Sun Oct 16, 2011 12:09 pm

This is great info, thanks.

Have you been in the Tahoe region or did you go elsewhere? Doesn't seem like Tahoe would have many beginner areas, perhaps if you were already a highly skilled kiteboarder and snowboarder. Any lesson suggestions? I might get a chance to head out to Utah and get some lessons there too if anyone has any experience working with instructors.


Tahoe sort of sucks for snowkiting. Went twice (once for a lesson) and got skunked both times. I went to Mt Rose Meadows, perhaps someone will followup and tell me I should have gone to another spot. The Squaw golf course, Caples (sp?) lake and that field near Northstar are other spots in Tahoe, but I haven't tried them. As for lessons, I think rvv (username) does lessons in Tahoe.

Now, Utah on the other hand, is great. Went there for a couple of days and got plenty of time riding. If you want to take lessons out there, get in contact with Jeff Kafka from Wind over Water. He does lessons at 3rd in the summer, then heads to Utah for the winter. Tell him Keith referred you ;)
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Postby jwest21 » Sun Oct 16, 2011 2:39 pm

[quote="keithdkd"]If you want to take lessons out there, get in contact with Jeff Kafka from Wind over Water. He does lessons at 3rd in the summer, then heads to Utah for the winter. Tell him Keith referred you[/quote]

Wind over water is always a common referral here on BAK— if I get out to the area I'll surely get in contact with him.
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Re: Gear for the snow....

Postby buckidge » Sun Oct 16, 2011 6:33 pm

stoked here myself about kiting tahoe this winter. Hoping for good wind/snow.

I'll def. be using my LEI kites rather than getting into foils.

A few years ago I kited the frozen lakes of Madison, WI. I used foils, but most everyone else was using their LEI's.

I'm thinking I may want a larger harness, and the idea of a seat harness on snow is also a bit appealing for me too as the standard harness has bothered me in the past for pulling up on my jacket and layers moreso than when just on a wetsuit.
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Postby jwest21 » Mon Oct 17, 2011 1:21 am

Makes sense about the harness. I'd also be concerned about wearing away the outer waterproofing and material on the back of my jacket; is that not a problem?
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Re: Gear for the snow....

Postby adamrod » Mon Oct 17, 2011 8:45 am

a lot of people like flow bindings, cause you can set up your high backs with less cant...also, a snowkite specific board is handy if you can borrow one, but not the end of the world if not...

be prepared for some sore thighs...all that time on your heelside edge is tough if you're not in peak snowboarding shape

we had a great time in Idaho last year too...IMHO I thought the setup was better in idaho than utah (more terrain, more wind)
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Postby jwest21 » Mon Oct 17, 2011 10:41 am

I've already got a setup with flow bindings; love those things. I'm rocking a camber k2 Zeppelin 158 and my play-board, an Omatic Celebrity 148 with rocker and bowed surface. Which board would be better suited? I'm assuming the Zeppelin since it's got better carving capabilities and a longer effective edge.

I only say Utah because I have a good friend that may be staying there for the winter and I want to go visit anyway.

A little off subject, but is there anyone planning some riding up at Tahoe this coming season? I'm looking to be up there on the North-side (Squaw) for the Wed-Sun around Thanksgiving if they have enough snow to stick to their opening day. Not really willing to put down money for a place before I know they'll even open but anybody have a couch I might stay on and I'll cook dinner for you each night.
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Re: Gear for the snow....

Postby rvv » Mon Oct 17, 2011 12:03 pm

Here you go... all the tahoe snowkiting info you need in one place. There are a ton more backcountry spots as well.
Please call if you have any questions. Stay tuned for an upcoming KGB snowkiting Tahoe 2012 announcement...Big things in the works :) :)
http://www.kgbswag.com/lessons/snowkiti ... locations/
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