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Beginner launch

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby dazarter » Tue Aug 06, 2013 9:19 pm

td3 are from 2009......td2 are from 2008 just for info....

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby keegster17 » Tue Aug 06, 2013 9:29 pm

ok i thought it was a 2008 series kite that is good to know.

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby icebird » Tue Aug 06, 2013 9:33 pm

dazarter wrote:Self launching on land can be very interesting.....

Recently had a beginner coming in with a too big kite, not trying to self land but unable to position the kite where others could reach it, then looping the kite while moving around confused.
Nobody harmed, lots of people around to help, still not very safe. Kite was too big, but still controllable for an experienced kiter, just not for him.

I'd prefer a smaller kite like 12m. I don't know weight nor spot, but generally light wind is difficult and beginners tend to not realize when they are overpowered, especially if they make it to the water before the wind picks up. Then landing becomes interesting.

When I was starting out I went to a remote corner with a friend, tangled the bridle and had the kite tumple down a field after my friend released the kite. No harm. We were to told to stay close to the other kiters so they could help before or after something goes wrong.

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby Twitch » Tue Aug 06, 2013 9:51 pm

Thor SFBay wrote:Absolutely not. Self launching and landing are for expert kiters only.
I dont agree with this, ofcourse beginners should not try to self launch/land however once you become more of an intermediate rider you will most likely in some situations start to self launch. It's not just for 'expert' riders. Your instructor should show you within your first lesson or two the very important self rescue, but at your stage your not there yet to be doing self launch/landing because it can be dangerous depending on how your spot is and also the method you try to self launch. In my opinion chat with some local kiters and if more lessons isnt an option get an assist launch.

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby William Munney » Tue Aug 06, 2013 11:58 pm

In addition to getting an assisted launch, find a stretch of shallow water. Take short tacks/attempted water starts and then walk back upwind to the start point. You will find it much easier to relaunch in shallow water and you won't get dragged downwind. It will also be easier to self rescue if there is no one nearby to land your kite.

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby Jantrit » Wed Aug 07, 2013 4:21 am

Self launch is not something to try on by yourself the first time. While I was learning I asked one of my local kite friends to walk me through a couple launches and landings. Something you can work on is putting the kite down in the shallows and then relaunching it. This keeps your kite in the water so you won't be dragging it all over the sand and rocks while learning how to get a kite off the ground. As others have said, it would be better for you to practice self rescue in the shallows and also get used to what happens when you release your chicken loop and how to recover the kite when you have released the safety.

You should really get to know some of the local kiters and don't be afraid to ask for help. I would even ask someone else to walk my lines with me and check my rig before launching me. That let them know that I was new to the sport and also gave them a bit more confidence that my rig was setup correct and also that I was cautious enough to ask for the second look at the rig.

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby toyletbowl » Wed Aug 07, 2013 6:12 am

keegster17 wrote:Reason I got this size kite is I am new at the sport and thought of the winds were I live. (Toronto) Ontario. What would someone recommend in terms of kite size then, what I might consider buying? so far I kite in Wasaga Beach, Ontario, maybe I will try Cherry beach in Toronto. The reason I asked about self launching is i would feel more comfortable away from kiters and find a place on the beach where there is no one, so I could practice without the fear of doing something wrong around other kiters.
Keegs....Do a 180 on this thinking. Find where your locals are riding and BE part of the local crew. You will learn tons more by riding with them than trying to stay out of their way.

I tell all new students and riders to be part of the crowd for the above reasons and it's also safer.

You will learn:
*How to ride with others. When to keep the kite high or low when passing others. Upwind = kite high. Downwind = kite low.
*How to do assisted launches and landings.
*How to do self launches and landings once you get more experience.
*How to pick the right size kite.

Much much more.

Also, there's an unwritten rule that the more advanced riders SHOULD look out for new riders both on and off the water. Paying it forward and good karma, but you'll also learn what riders are selfish and look out only for themselves. They are few and far between, but some are out there.

Hope this helps,


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Re: Beginner launch

Postby jbdc » Wed Aug 07, 2013 5:22 pm


We have three launches for different wind directions in the city, and the only one at this time of year which has the space you need as a beginner is Hanlan's Point on the west end of the Toronto Islands.

Check out the Ontario Kiteboard Association page for it and other launches. also has some good information. Cherry beach is simply not a suitable launch until you can ride upwind and have your self-rescue procedures nailed. The kite launching and landing area is very small and turbulent due to the nearby trees, and the 'beach' is actually quite rocky below the water line. I haven't been down there in over a month, but I was talking with a lifeguard at Hanlan's on Sunday, and he told me it's getting a bit crazy down there; too many kiters going through the swim area. Ashbridges is just too crowded in the summer; you have to be able to stay upwind without drifting into the swim area on the easterlies which are appropriate for that location.

None of the Toronto launches are ideal for learning, they're all open to the lake, get deep rather quickly and develop appreciable windswell in only a few hours. Hanlan's has the most space, but can get shorebreak which is downright intimidating when starting out; and for some reason, lots of guys seem to have trouble getting out past it--especially when the wind is directly onshore. The trick is to body-drag with your board out past the break, then go from there. Of course, they could all just be a pile of idiots who like riding 10 feet from the water's edge with their kites overflying the beach and zero room for error. I'm not sure if this is a problem of skills or education--maybe both.

You can filter spots for 'beginner' on, that should help you find other launches--Please use them! OKA Matt Aiken has spent a lot of time and effort with various authorities securing the launches we do have, and we need to use them responsibly to preserve access. Setting-up outside the designated areas could create problems. The vast majority of guys you'll find at the beach are friendly and always willing to lend a hand. Don't worry about mixing-in, just ask the locals if there's a better area at the launch for you to do your thing; but really as Bob said, it's the responsibility of the more experienced guys to avoid beginners.

I *might* make it out to Hanlan's tonight (but probably not until next week). If you want, PM me, we can exchange contact info and I'll let you know the next time I'm headed to Hanlan's.

P.S. Even in the height of summer, Lake Ontario can get FRIGID. I was at Hanlan's both Saturday and Sunday on the gusty northerlies available there. Saturday, I could have gotten away with a shorty or no wetsuit at all. So when I went on Sunday I didn't bother bringing my steamer, and brought only the shorty instead. I immediately regretted the decision; the offshore wind had pulled a bunch of cold water from the bottom to the surface, and it was freezing. Check the attached image, it was 54 degrees Fahrenheit, maybe less. As a beginner, you'll be spending more time in the water, and when it's that cold it will sap your strength very quickly. You need a wetsuit if you don't have one already.

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby dyyylan » Wed Aug 07, 2013 7:37 pm

if you want to self launch from land, it's really easy as long as you have enough room, even with a 14m kite. the bigger the kite is, the less chance of something going wrong, because it will be a lot slower to roll over etc. the worst thing that could happen is you end up hot launching it, which isnt a big deal in true 14m wind

i would say keep kiting with assistance until you can ride comfortably, but as long as the wind is light you can have someone teach you how to self launch soon. just ask someone at your spot to show you, it's kind of difficult to figure *exactly* how it works from videos until you've done it a few times. so, wait a bit until you can ride comfortably and ask someone to show you. it's really not as dangerous as the geezers on this forum make it seem, so don't be afraid unless you're kiting in 40 knot winds every day like they seem to

self landing is different and more difficult, what you can always do is make sure you have enough room and use your safety release, and self-rescue up to your kite on land. this is how i end up self landing most of the time if it's 20 knots+.

there are other methods but self-landing is pretty difficult and a good chance your kite will flip over and drag you so i definitely wouldn't advise learning those methods for a while

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Re: Beginner launch

Postby irwe » Wed Aug 07, 2013 11:09 pm

Check out Holme's Point for NW wind and Beaverton (9th Concession or Lagoon City) for SW wind.
on Lake Simcoe.

All of these spots have long stretches of shallow water and sandy bottom more suited for beginners. There are kiting rules posted at H Pt and LC. All of the above spots are popular with kiters. There is pay parking at H Pt.

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