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Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

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Van Hunk
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Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby Van Hunk » Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:07 am

Ahoi everyone

As a local I can confirm that this season has been the most crowded I have ever seen Cape Town.

In that context, just a quick note to remind repeat visitors (its nice to see you again!) and give brand new arrivals in the Mother City a snapshot of local kite etiquette.

1.Be friendly and smile! You are in Cape Town after all.
2.The first 50m of water from the shoreline is for kiters going in or leaving the water. Please don't jump or do freestyle here. You are placing yourself, other kiters and folks on the beach at risk for the sake of stroking your ego.
4.Rider with right hand forward on the bar has right of way. (in other words the person on the incoming tack at Blouberg has right of way)
5.Wave riders - guys and girls, when you are on a downwinder and reach a crowded section of coast, be gracious, hold your tack and adhere to point 4. Otherwise it is a mess.
6.Avoid beginners and give them right of way. Their trip is full on.
7. Know your own limitations and, if your ego allows, kite within them. The conditions down here have been known to maul and unjure even the best riders among us.

PS If you drop your kite in the type of swell we've seen the last week, release it completely if you can't relaunch it quick quick. It will wash out. Several visitors had their kites wrecked this last week holding on to their kit even as wall after wall of ice water ripped it to shreds.
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Toby (Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:22 am) • Exal (Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:08 pm)
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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby Hugh2 » Sat Jan 26, 2019 12:51 pm

Second all of that. I don't know what happened to the guy, but on Thursday at the end of the day there was an injured kiter at Kite beach, at least his left knee and possibly his hip. Helped get him out to the ambulance. Most folks need to use a little extra care here especially at the crowded spots, and best get off the water late in the day when the wind is strongest, one is tired, and the hotshots are doing megaloops and landing with speed 100m downwind of their launch ramps.

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby zloilyoha » Sat Jan 26, 2019 5:13 pm

8. Be ready even if you are riding starboard someone can jump over you - because it would be a crime to miss that kicker.
9.Please do a longer tacks to avoid - 8. or being cursed :rollgrin: :rollgrin:
10. Always, ALWAYS and often check you upwind side - somebody already could be flying up there.
11. Learn (its not so hard) how to pass even the big crushing waves( unless you are underpowered) to avoid someones landing on your head if you decide to turn in front of that wave

:D :D :D

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby Exal » Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:08 pm

I read this post many times now. Can't wait to arrive in 10 days yeeeeeeeew. If you have tips for me regarding with which spots I should start/progress towards that would be cool, since I am maybe an advanced beginner now? Will be there with a bigger grp, so someone always able to watch out for me but I don't mind doing different things than they are doing the first days.

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby flyingfishza » Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:20 pm

I have been kiting Cape town on and off for 18 years, last year I vowed never to kite kitebeach to doodles on a busy day , its madness and dangerous.
The best waveriding IMHO on that particular stretch is between sunset and kitebeach, or gatebeach(gaybeach) usually also the least crowded stretch on downwinders.
But what gets my curiosity the most is you can drive 20min north and have stretches of beach to yourself
how much fun can it be to kite and not be able to do a turn on a wave without looking over your shoulder first, no thanks
Personally now prefer to only downwind doodles to sunset on NW

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby Van Hunk » Sat Jan 26, 2019 11:20 pm

Hugh2 wrote:
Sat Jan 26, 2019 12:51 pm
Thursday at the end of the day there was an injured kiter at Kite beach, at least his left knee and possibly his hip. Helped get him out to the ambulance. Most folks need to use a little extra care here especially at the crowded spots, and best get off the water late in the day when the wind is strongest, one is tired, and the hotshots are doing megaloops and landing with speed 100m downwind of their launch ramps.
The guy injured is one of the best and most experienced local riders.

Like I said, Table bay can chew even the best of us.

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby Strekke » Sun Jan 27, 2019 6:14 am

Exal wrote:
Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:08 pm
I read this post many times now. Can't wait to arrive in 10 days yeeeeeeeew. If you have tips for me regarding with which spots I should start/progress towards that would be cool, since I am maybe an advanced beginner now? Will be there with a bigger grp, so someone always able to watch out for me but I don't mind doing different things than they are doing the first days.
Go to Langebaan lagoon and stay away from all the ocean spots where it's crowded, superwindy, and where you can get destroyed by waves. If you must go to these spots anyways, rig accordingly (small kites only on a SEer), respect the right of way rules, don't keep your kite sitting at 12, and LOOK around you before you turn around. Imo CT oceanside, with its nuking wind and massive waves, really is an experienced-only spot. Beginners just get punished by the conditions, endanger themselves and others, and take up space of those that do know what they are doing.

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby rynhardt » Sun Jan 27, 2019 7:09 am

Strekke wrote:
Sun Jan 27, 2019 6:14 am
. Imo CT oceanside, with its nuking wind and massive waves, really is an experienced-only spot. Beginners just get punished by the conditions, endanger themselves and others, and take up space of those that do know what they are doing.
Everything else being equal, if you're an adult, make up your own mind and ride where you like.

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby Hugh2 » Sun Jan 27, 2019 7:32 am

I agree with "ride where you like", nobody owns the beach, the wind, the sea, or the waves, we are just making recommendations since a poster asked for them. I repeat advice given elsewhere from my own 10 years of coming here for 2-3 months each summer. If you are not experienced with strong wind and big waves and crowds, try riding in the morning, like this morning would be perfect, and avoid days when the waves are huge. You really can get beat up badly here.

A few years ago I made friends with an English guy who was trying to learn backrolls at Kitebeach. I thought he was crazy to do that here, and indeed, two days later I noticed all his gear piled up in the Best shop. Turned out he buggered his knee on a backroll, got carted off to hospital, and someone brought his gear to the Best shop to store it till he could claim it. He flew back to England the next day. Don't ruin your trip by exceeding you abilities here, you do want to learn, just not get hurt doing it.

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Re: Cape Town safety and riding convention basics

Postby Hugh2 » Sun Jan 27, 2019 8:05 am

flyingfishza wrote:
Sat Jan 26, 2019 9:20 pm
I have been kiting Cape town on and off for 18 years, last year I vowed never to kite kitebeach to doodles on a busy day , its madness and dangerous.
The best waveriding IMHO on that particular stretch is between sunset and kitebeach, or gatebeach(gaybeach) usually also the least crowded stretch on downwinders.
But what gets my curiosity the most is you can drive 20min north and have stretches of beach to yourself
how much fun can it be to kite and not be able to do a turn on a wave without looking over your shoulder first, no thanks
Personally now prefer to only downwind doodles to sunset on NW
If you are in town, Tuesday looks good for that. I like the NW too, especially if I am here in the winter, as I ride regular and still struggle with bottom turns on the SEaster.


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