Kitesurfkings Catch Up

March 7, 2013

Blogging standards are at an all time low; I’m going to try and pull it back by reflecting on 2012, filling in some of the missing bits and bringing us up to speed.

We failed to mention that we saw 2012 in with another Kitesurfkings kitesurfing multi-spot expedition to South Africa; not much to write home about, other than… a TV production company flew out from the UK to film us as we kited all of the exciting spots that Cape Town and the surrounding areas offer, enjoyed free style sessions with Kevin Langree (as in Kitesurf World Champion!) and took on Cape Point on a 6 meter day.

waves south africa kitesurfing

We put in the effort and got the maximum amount of kitesurfing out of our two weeks in south africa. Just like the year before we were blessed with wind for the entire trip. The flat spots super flat and the wave spots…

kitesurf south africa

kite surf south africa

January continued to be all about the waves as some of the Kitesurfkings crew met up with Dom Moore in Newquay for his first Ocean Confidence course. We learn’t loads, drank too much and surfed both days. Due to alcohol consumption and the passing of time we’ve another Kitesurfkings Ocean Confidence course with Dom is on the 11th May 2013. We all want to be the best we can in the water so training in all disciplines is recommended. Kitesurfkings will be offering additional Ocean Confidence course dates and more first aid safety days throughout the year.

ocean confidence course

Kite sessions were skinny on the ground as we went into 2013. The UK really wasn’t pumping until we got into June and then it hardly stopped. Obviously we took what there was but the forecasts were unreliable until the local sea breeze effect came into play.

Shoreham Kitesurf Club was borne and plans set afoot to work with Kitesurfkings to continue Shoreham Beach’s impeccable safety record and offer more to Joe kiter that will not only benefit themselves but the people they kite with. ‘Back to beach’ and ‘first aid safety/rescue’ days proved super popular and caused other clubs and schools to also create similar program for their customers and beach users. If ur local club’s not running such sessions then suggest it to them… or just come down and join us. We post on Facebook when we are running sessions but will also endeavour to keep you informed here on the blog 😉

1 kitesurf safety

With the summer brought the release of the 2013 Cabrinha collection and really blew a lot of people away by bringing out Cabrinha’s first C-kite since bow kites came on the scene in 2005. As well as Cabrinha launching an awesome new C-kite (the Chaos) they also brought out a girls range of Cabrinha kites with easier to reach controls and less masculine colour lines.

cabrinha 2013 kites

With the season already in swing it was a shame the wind didn’t choose to come without rain for the 2012 Paddle Around The Pier event on the first weekend in July. Kitesurfkings have had a presence at Paddle since 2008 and this was the first soaking we received… fortunately it was also the first year one of Kitesurfkings new van’s was more like a mobile office, come show room, with flat screen TV and protection from the rain 😉

kitesurfkings kitesurf surf bus


paddle around the pier

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Soon we were in full swing and there were many a success story with super happy, safe, able and excited kitesurfers reaching their kitesurfing independence with Kitesurfkings. Everyone has to work hard at kitesurfing, it’s not a sport that you can just do and fully understand from day one, but with time, tenacity and perseverance the skill of being able to kitesurf confidently then changes lives. For the work to happiness trade off to be equal kitesurfing should really be much, much harder!

beginner kitesurf lessons

We continued with our Kitesurfkings Cabel to Kite sessions at Hove Lagoon for the 2012 season. The cable has started getting busier now, which were really pleased about as the guys at the Lagoon work really hard but it also makes it all the more important for us to keep a Cable to Kite night in each week. We’ll try and make it a regular session for everyone again this year.


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The Big Air Open took place on Saturday 14th July 2012 in Worthing, West Sussex. Part of the Olympic Torch Relay Weekend. Luke from Kitesurfkings, that’s me folks, was stoked to have been invited to judge the competition. The event was based on a ‘how high you can jump format’ with points being awarded for the maximum height reached.

We were so close to reaching the end and securing a winner but the wind died on us; all was not lost as I still gave out my prize (Kitesurfkings Style Prize) of a new 2012 pro model wakeskate signed by Andre Phillip and better still we put all of the prize money behind the bar and drank it!

big air open

Big Air Open

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Some of Kitesurfkings proudest moments of 2012 saw Kitesurfking students going from never flying a kite to kiting safely with confidence and landing back rolls in three months! Taking two young school groups through the Kitesurfkings Beginner course and them all receiving the rewards for their hard work. A 74 year old student who took themselves for a body drag and continues to practice with the view to sailing into the sunset in 2013 (watch this space!). Students who have triumphed over their own initial fears, listened, put in the effort and then fell in love with kitesurfing.

Kitesurf Back Roll

Our Egypt coaching weeks sold out again and we lucked out with totally awesome groups and awesome wind again!

We were really lucky with wind, especially in week two and maximised it by running regular down winders through some awesome lagoons, through mangroves and over sandbars 😉

IMG_7698 kitesurf egypt kitesurfkings

No South African trip this year as 2013 kicked off with another of Kitesurfkings kiting extravaganzas to Zanzibar!

kitesurf kitesurfkings holidays

All of our Zanzibar kitesurfing trips have been magical but for some reason this was the best so far; the group were perfect, the wind blew everyday, the food was incredible and the kite sessions out of this world amazing… we’re trying to offer a July 13 trip just to meet demand!

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Dude!

Don’t like getting the ‘Dude’? Just double Dude then Dude… it’s the way forwards! Personally I love the ‘Dude’, Dude…

Been ages since the last Kitesurfkings blog entry, won’t apologize as I’m sure no one’s that bothered but going to make an effort to catch up today and share the love, and more importantly the news. There’s a free kite clinic with spaces left up for grabs, Kirsty Jones has invited 6 kiters to join her over in Lanzarote, Lewis Crathern has the launch of his documentary next week, Paddle Around the Pier is just around the corner, the cable’s provided fun times and more sessions are booked (I’ll post some fun pics from Tuesday’s Kitesurfkings private session :)), kitesurfing lessons have been a blast, we’ve discounted the pants off the last 2010 kit, there have been some epic kitesurfing sessions had locally and we’ve epic international sessions coming up. I’ll post in sections in case you wanna cut straight to the chase…

Firstly, if you can get away from the 25th June for a week then don’t miss this opportunity…

Kirsty Jones

Kirsty Jones, 3x World Champion and more importantly super lovely kite and yoga coach:

Named as The Kirsty Jones Experience, this one week kitesurf, yoga, surf and SUP trip is being run by Kirsty Jones herself from her second home of Lanzarote. Kirsty will be looking after a group of no more than 6 people for 7 days of kitesurfing lessons, yoga and surfing fun. The beach house that has been booked for the week is awesome, right next to Famara beach where you’d be kitesurfing and where you’ll be finishing some of your down winders, the beach house has it’s own pool, terrace, BBQ area ect ect… I’ve seen it, it’s seriously smart. As well as 5 days of kitesurfing coaching there’s loads more, including a boat trip to near by Graciosa Island, best plan is to have a read yourself and get yourself out there. The trip has been put together by African Space Kite Surfing, so go to the African Space website if this LINK TO THE TRIP is not working.  

Another big name in the kitesurfing world is Lewis Crathern, and hasn’t he been busy…

Lewis Crathern

Lewis Crathern, The Man That Touched The Sky:

What a dude! An inspiration to all kitesurfers, Lewis’ story of how he came to jump Brighton Pier is now part of a documentary about Lewis that will be released eminently. You can watch a trailer for Lewis’ documentary ‘The Man That Touched The Sky’ by following this link: Lewis Crathern, The Man That Touched The Sky or going to the Kitesurfkings Facebook page. We’re invited to the premier of Lewis’ documentary next Tuesday and so will be able to fill you in then.

Lewis was seen this week on BBC One’s Blue Peter, a link’s up on the Kitesurfkings Facebook page and we recommend checking it out, regardless of your age, for some top tips that’ll help with your wakeboarding. The BBC guys all met up with Lewis at the wakeboarding cable at Hove Lagoon and he put them through their paces.

Lewis runs his own UK clinics and you can get info on those directly through his own windmachine website, there’s also loads of interesting info and Lewis’ own take on wind, kitesurfing and wakeboarding. If you want to get away on one of Lewis Crathern’s International Kite Clinics then you need to get in touch with African Space Kitesurfing, CHECK OUT THE INFO HERE, or get in touch with us a line at Kitesurfkings (WWW.KITESURFKINGS.COM) as I, Luke,  will also be joining Lewis on his next international kite clinic which is happening on the 13th October in Egypt… can’t wait!

There have been some epic sessions of late and I’ve enjoyed hearing about other people’s so thought I’d share a couple of my own from the last few weeks as they seemed to get a laugh out of the guys in Shoreham and might encourage you lovely readers to tell us what you’ve been up to…

UK Kitesurf Sessions

Late for an appointment:

Thursday the 1st June 2011 was an epic day by all accounts; the sun was thinking about showing it’s face, the wind was up, waves were in and lessons were cancelled due to the serious, window rattling, conditions that we were greeted with early doors. seldom do kitesurf instructors get to kite the really sweet days as lessons need to run lessons around low tide, when the wind is really pumping lessons can’t run and by 11am on the 1st the wind was already solidly over 40 mph. I made every effort to complete some of the back log of admin (yawn) so I could get out for a cheeky kite session before a doctors appointment at 14.00 in Kemp Town. At 12.00 I phoned John E B in Shoreham to see if he’d be up for a kite, he’d been itching to get out too and so there wasn’t much convincing needed; we agreed to meet up by the beach huts in Shoreham at 12.30. I arrived late and so John was already on the water, powered on his 6m and riding a surfboard. There was no one else around so I quickly pumped up my 7m (should have gone 5 but you know how it is) and self launched, thank you Cabrinha for making such a long centre line!!

We were having an awesome session, the wind was solid and the waves were some of the best I’d enjoyed in Shoreham this year, as you’d imagen there wasn’t much skill needed to do massive boosts so spent half the time in the air and the rest lost in the waves. At the back of my mind I knew I could only stay out for a short time if I were to be back in Kemp Town before 14.00. Before long it was time to come off the water but we’d travelled half way down Shoreham Beach and edging upwind on the 7m was seriously tiring. I started to battle myself about what to do, scrap the appointment, self land and run to the van, keep edging upwind or go for gold and just kite there? John knew I had the appointment and so I gave him a wave and off I went with my kite.

In total it took about 35mins to get from Shoreham to Kemp Town; when you’re driving the route it feels slow when you do it in 25, try it on a kite when it’s 45 mph and you’re heading straight down wind! I went past a couple of groups on the way but didn’t have time to be sociable. There were a couple of people kitesurfing Hot Pipes and just up from King Alfred but there weren’t many kiters out. Gotta say that if you weren’t out that day you really missed out, the waves were sweet all the way along and seemed to get much larger the further out the back of Brighton and Hove I went.

As I came in I was greeted by one of the Brighton Sea Front guys on his quad, he’d been watching me kite as I came in and I recognized the dude. He didn’t have any beef at all but said that there’d been a report of someone hammering down the coast on a kite so he had to come and check it out. Wearing a wet wetsuit and having bare feet in the appointment I obviously felt like a plum and my mrs wasn’t best but I did clear up the puddle before I left, anything goes in Brighton and if I’d have missed the kite session I’d have been kicking myself. 

I’m planning the same route with some mates and we’ll take our time and enjoy it all this time! Kiting alone is never a good move but in my defence I did have an impact vest on for buoyancy, the Cabrinha kites relaunch effortlessly, I only ride new kit so it’s in optimum condition, the safety system always works, I didn’t kite much further than I could swim or go too close to the piers, John knew where I was going and a 35min down winder doesn’t seem like a long trip after having done down winders in South Africa and Zanzibar… safety hat on, box ticked.  

Night kite:

On Wednesday the 8th June 2011 I met up with a best friend, Chris (aka Simo) with the view to having a kite, it was already 20.30 and we knew we had to get on it if we were to get a kitesurf session in before it got dark. We didn’t get on it and it started to get late, we roped in the assistance of a helpful kite bitch (none derogatory name for kite helper) and got a lift to Hot Pipes, set up and got out for 21.40. The light was amazing, yes there was still light, the wind just enough for a sweet 7m session and the waves had way more volume than we usually get in Brighton. I have to say the start of the session was the best I have had this year.

We didn’t get too close to the groynes or various bits of metal work that protrude from the sea behind the industrial estate but did go Mc Donalds stylie LARGE! Simo smashed up the waves, clearing each groyne space with a single wave and I tried doing the same airborne, until it got darker when we both just enjoyed the power of the waves and being perfectly lit on our 7m Switchblaes and ‘at one’ (yo) with the elements as we tuned in to the light from the half moon and white of the waves.

It really was a dream session until we got to about Moroccos where I came unhooked on accident, easily fixed as not over powered. After getting hooked back in and back into the session my foot strap came out, doh! Not ideal but just ment riding down wind like a man with one leg until that got boring and flipped to using the board to body drag. We came in just before Regency Square and the old West Pier at 22.25 where our favourite kite bitch waited with a flash light to greet us.

Generally night sessions are massive no go for kitesurfing but like base jumping and the likes there are things one can do to make such sessions as risk free as possible. We do not recommend kiting at night, who knows what’s in the sea and how would anyone find you if you had a problem? We kite together all the time, didn’t get any further than 200m from one another, didn’t go out further than we could swim, still had enough light to see the important stuff and had beach support following us along the road and waiting on the beach for our return. Tick.

Beer tastes so much better when you’ve really earnt it.

if you’ve any epic sessions or just one that’ll get a laugh or teach a lesson, then ping it over to us here to the Kitesurfkings blog, post it on the Kitesurfkings Facebook page or email it over to info@kitesurfkings.com and we’ll pop it up for you.

Cable Sessions at Hove Lagoon

Our Kitesurfkings private cable sessions are always fun… unable to upload the quality pics but will try and get a couple from Tuesday’s cable session online later as they’re well worth a look. Next session is next Thursday; we don’t run them to make money, there is no financial gain to us just a saving to you and guaranteed laughs. Find us on Facebook if you want to get involved.

Free Stuff

KB4 Girls next event is happening in Lancing next weekend but sadly blokes don’t qualify just by wearing a skirt, I have checked. I’m not sure what the ruling is on ladyboys… I encourage any of you kitesurfing ladyboys out there to test the water. There are still places up for grabs and if you’re keen then give us a shout at Kitesurfkings and chat to Andrina as she’s organising the event. Did I mention it’s free?

Paddle Around the Pier is just around the corner and although there might not have been the usual amount of advertising for the event this year it’s set to be bigger and better than ever. Kitesurfkings will be down there with a stand and hanging out with our friends at Orb360, Hove Lagoon and the likes. Do come and say hi, there’ll be prizes and offers exclusively for the event and it’ll generally be a fun weekend with stuff to do, to watch and to try. So, that’s Paddle Around the Pier on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd July.

Gotta finish this blog! Kitesurfkings have some new and still boxed Cabrinha 2010 IDS kites that we can practically give away… well, not quite but almost! There’s a good chance it’s been too windy recently for your current kit or you’re lacking in confidence because you don’t have the latest, safest safety system?? Well, here’s your chance to put that right and grab a 7 or 9m Cabrinha IDS kite for a song! Well, about 600 quid including the bar, lines, leash, pump ect (which cost £360 on their own!). If you want one then gimmie a call on 07878 399 419 (Luke).

Location: South Africa, based in Table View, Cape Town

Date: Mid/End November 2011

Duration: 14 Days

Do you have a passion for life? Love kite surfing? Want to get away this winter?

100%!

Prepare to get excited then as this could be for you…

We love kite surfing around Cape Town and have always been in ore of how windy the area can be. On one of our recent trips we spent two weeks living an intrepid kite surfers’ dream and have been working hard to make it a reality for our customers.

Staying together in a super cool surf house facing the famous Table Top Mountain we’ll have kite surfing on our door step, kiting on tap, nice! When kiting from home we’ll be able to downwind to and from our own front door or kite in front of our digs to stay closer to ‘refreshments’. One of our South Africa based guides will be living with us for the duration of our stay and hooking us up with luxury breakfasts each day to best fuel us for what’s in store…

Driven around in a couple of seriously stylish VW T2 camper vans our guides will take us to South Africa’s best kite surfing locations, some well know but many top secret. We’ll be hitting numerous beaches to kite surf flat water and wave spots that will have you rubbing your eyes with disbelief or clearing tears of joy!

As well as kite surfing there’s unlimited us of SUP boards in front of our surf house and we’ll also be taking them on the road with us when we go exploring, there are places that need to be seen but just sitting and admiring… not as much fun as exploring with SUP’s.

Other activities we have planned include kloofing Suicide Gorge, hiking Table Mountain and abseiling down, hike up Lions Head Mountain and paraglide down, Lions Head full moon, SUP on Franschoek Dam, rock climbing, wakeboarding at the cable park, trips with rubber duck to tow in, wakeboard, fish and catch lobsters. There are additional activities like shark cage or scuba diving that you might want to try which can also be arranged. Some activities might not be for you and they’ll always be kite surfing alternatives. There’s too much to list but have to mention the famous South African braai and sun downers.

Kite surfing is our number one aim and although this is not specifically a coaching trip you will learn masses and we’ll help you to nail tricks you’re struggling with as well as getting the most out of the waves. Our friends that will be guiding us along our adventure are some of the nicest guys and gals we’ve had the pleasure of meeting, they have helped us realise an intrepid kite surfer’s dream trip and are exceptionally good kiters themselves.

Aaron Hadlow, Ruben Lenten and Lewis Crathern choose to frequent Cape Town and the surrounding areas during the winter months because of the solid wind, awesome weather and epic kite surfing; we’re after the same but offering so much more.

We’re excited and hope you are too; we guarantee this will be an amazing trip that will stay with you forever. If you are interested in joining us then please get in contact with our head kite surf guide/instructor, Luke (yeah me, the one from Kitesurfkings), he’ll be one of your guides in South Africa and has recently returned from such a trip. You can also get in touch with African Space who are the guys making this trip happen through their extensive contacts and years of experience in South Africa. You can email the kite surfing team at kitesurfing@africanspace.co.uk or call the office on 0121 382 9000.

Although we do run beginner trips this is not one of them, everyone must have the minimum competency of being able to stay up wind and perform a deep water pack down. If you’re not quite there yet then contact us about making a plan so you can be or have a think about joining one of our beginner or intermediate trips.

Writing or Kiting?

December 20, 2010

Up until now the choice has certainly been kiting, as a result we’ve not shared any info on our blog about either of our most recent progression trips to Zaafarana, the cheeky business trip back to Egypt to check out a new spot and trip option for 2011, visiting Mozambique to check out the kiting there or the two week kitesurfing trip to South Africa to see what’s on offer around Cape Town and meet with contacts that would like to help run multi spot kitesurfing trips.

There’s so much to write about and there’s a 16 knot south easterly right now with low tide at 16.20. Anyone up for a kite here in Brighton or Shoreham?