Folsom Regulations

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Folsom Regulations

Postby jlb8431 » Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:08 pm

This is information for anyone kiting Folsom Lake.
Folsom is a state Recreational area and has kite flying regulations that are in effect. It has been a couple years since I talked to a Ranger there, but the regs. pertain to larger size kites like kitesurfing kites and paragliders. The regulations pertain to flying on land and not specifically on the water, but restricts flying in the direct vacinity of beach goers/bathers. The Rangers do not enforce these regulations as we usually get right in the water, but also because there has not been any issues. Occassionally we see new faces at Folsom and I think it is important you all know that if an incident happens, ie: kite vs bystander, boat, car, etc. we could loose access.
There are regular locals who can give good info and hazard warnings so just ask some one if you show up on a windy day. Folsom is primarily used by locals because the wind can change very quickly or not follow the forcast at all, so for most it may not be worth the drive. If you are considering Folsom during winter months be prepared for flukey winds, rain, and cold water. There are days that are truely extraordinary and the scenery on the lake can be dramatic and awesome in the right conditions.

The lake is surrounded by rocky terrain and the sand is not sand, but decomposed granite and sharp rocks. If you have kites in your quiver that you won't be dissapointed in damaging then bring them, because the terrain is not to gentle at folsom and I have seen quite a few kites including my own need at least minimal repair if not extensive. This also means if you are not a proficient kiter, folsom can be deadly as there have been quite a few days there where the wind can boost into the 35-45mph range( I have even measured 50mph gusts) or if you're not paying attention you may get hit by a squall coming up over the damn that kills the wind completely. best thing on a rainy day is keep an eye on the damn for dark clouds and heavy rain and obvious wind lines that forecast big gusts. Lastly, be able to safely self launch and land as kiters come and go and you may find yourself alone with no one around to help you as the locals are pretty self sufficient, strong kiters, and may need to get back to the office. Bascially, Folsom is not a great place to learn; especially in the winter months.

Good Winds:)
jlb8431
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Re: Folsom Regulations

Postby AD72 » Fri Nov 30, 2012 6:03 pm

Good comments. The rocks are gnarly and the launch at Folsom point is at the top of the hill so kites do no like to stay put. There is a good reason for keeping around "rock kites". Should add this to the Folsom Lake stickey under locations and conditions.
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