Kiting 2005 #13 (Sun 19 Jun): Sunday was the second kiteday of the weekend. Me 'n OnTheCusp went up to Palm Beach. Again it was s'posed to be an early start but one of us was in dire need of bacon sandwiches and other cures before we could begin. Not a problem though as the wind didn't really get going til late afternoon.

We met up with KeenKayla, who even out-geeks me I reckon on the kite-obsession thing. To the extent I think she may even be impressed with this whole blog thing (it being difficult to gain much enthusiasm from my mates). She arrived without water kites though which is a bit dubious. But is equally keen to run (fly) before she can walk, already talking about IKO instructor courses. I've been gibbering on for a while about the course in Boracay which teaches you up, but takes a month which would be difficult with work. Keeny tells us she's at the going upwind stage, and jumping but with no control, following on form her successful few weeks in Fiji, as opposed to OnTheCusp's windless week.

We had some fun with the land kites, I got to fly OnTheCusp's 4.5m for a while.

Wind was offshore, west to norwesterly, so for water action it was the Pittwater side. I had couple of goes but it wasn't quite blowing enough and the kite was prone to leadballooning, while I was a bit nervous about the proximity of the car park in what was direct onshore. Given my lack of ability on the upwind side that gives me little room for manoeuvre.

OnTheCusp did much better, living up to his name he showed us some reasonable upwind board action, returning to his point of departure at least twice.

It was a good day despite my not getting too much time in the water. Met some new people. Hanged out at what is admittedly a much prettier place than Kurnell. And finished with a top curry.

My discovery today is this site, where these blokes have put up the designs to make your own kite: (Cuspy - this could be something to do in the nowindtime we were discussing yesterday).

This is the other thing I've discovered today, a hybrid foil/inflatable kite. very cool??


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Spent the day with Cuspy. This time of year I'm being told that wind blows early in the morning, and not necessarily onshore (from the east). Which perhaps explains why my memories of last winter's kiting revolve around disappointment at Kurnell and Cronulla.

So winter's here - though to be fair winter in Sydney has temperatures of 18 degrees! But crappy wind.

So me & Cuspy were to meet early. The wind was blowing. Got in the van - - and, yes, it wouldn't be a kite-outing without some shoddy incident. I couldn't find the keys to the steering-wheel crook lock. An hour spent ransacking the van and the flat to no avail. Retracing my steps of the last week, the last time I remember having them was in Mudgee, about 3 hours from here! So no van for today.

So we went off Botany Bay way. Made that classic error of stopping at Kitepower in Sans Sousi. Wasted time. Got pure wallets prised open...I bit the bullet and decided I'd pay some more dues to safety...I bought my first helmet, and got a coil leash to replace my deadly catapulting surf-board leash. No I know all about the leashed/unleashed debate and that can be for another time. And nipped into the excellent bakery next door.

Some time later we actually got to Kurnell. Two kites up. Hoorah. The only two up in the Bay. And a third was just launching (foil kite, more on that later). So we fannied around setting up Cuspy's 16m Boxer, during which time the wind was dropping, dropping, dropping off. Cuspy got out there by the time it had dropped sub-10 knots. Crap. Bllocks. Typical. I had a brief go but there was not enough wind for us amateurs to get any board action (though a guy on a 13 with a MASSIVE board was having fun out there). I did get to use a 16m for the first time which was novelty. Heavy, difficult to manoevre. But, sorry Proto, not as difficult as the 14!

Nothing for it then but to call it a day. Had an equally miserable time trying to land-board over in Cronulla. Again 1st time for me so good to try these things at the very least.

Back to Kitepower then, for a really good discussion with one of the the employees there. Surprisingly friendly given our previous experiences with certain people in that shop. Lots of hype at the moment about the impending launch of Hellfish which is Best's new kite using Cuban Fibre which is some super-light material. Had a chat about that, and me getting a bigger kite. Seems its between a 15m Best Yarga, or wait out til the Hellfish launches and get one of those. While I can go out with Cuspy and use his 16 there's no urgency so might wait a month.


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