Once again I will record a diary here of my kiting this summer season in Cape Town. If you find the experiences of an aging and mediocre kiter too boring, please ignore this thread.
I got into Cape Town from the US late Monday night, and have the usual horrific jetlag. There was only middling SW wind on Tuesday so I spent the day getting my car, which has sat for 9 months, going, and various errands. Today the forecast was for reasonably strong NW as a low with a frontal system came through, and indeed by around 10 it was blowing 15-20 and built to perhaps 20-25 in the middle of the afternoon. There was only a small SW swell, with newly wind-generated chop and waves on top of it. I pumped my 2020 10m Naish Pivot on Bloubergstrand opposite the two Mystic houses and around 11:30 rode on Eleveight Master carbon board with North Navigator bar and Mystic seat harness, thereby affirming my lack of brand affiliation. There were a couple riders out, but mostly lessons using North Reach kites, most on short lines doing body-dragging but a couple getting going on a board. This wind direction means I am riding out on my weak side, so I did not try serious jumping off the waves as my left knee is problematic after a snowboarding incident 20 years ago that has led to early arthritis. Instead I jumped mostly coming in to shore, at first on the outside to get a feel for things, which is messy as the chop makes it hard to get speed up and time the jump, so later jumped inside getting speed behind a broken wave. Jumping this direction is rather different, both because one is landing sometimes in more shallow water than I like, and because the waves are now traveling with you and I misjudged the landing in a couple of broken waves, no damage done. I did a downwinder from there to the lighthouse at Milnerton near my flat, taking just over an hour and the Surfr app recorded 90 jumps, albeit perhaps 1/3 of those were small jumps over or off waves going out. Highest was almost 8m, which I am happy with given I was not using kickers. The windmeter at Board and Kite Africa is unfortunately still down, but the one on nearby Rietvlei at the Milnerton Aquatic Club (where 12 wingfoilers outnumbered the 2 lonely windsurfers this afternoon), the average windspeed was around 20 most of the day, with gusts to 30, no wonder I had my 10m trimmed down all day.
Tomorrow will be relatively light, perhaps suitable for foiling at Langebaan, then Friday and the weekend look really good with the famed SEaster filling in nicely. And of course the KOTA is all set to go, the stage is set, tents are pitched, cameras are ready, flags are flying, and it is possible they might run at least the first set of heats on Saturday. For those concerned about the on-going dune rehabilitation project, they have left a reasonably large area right at Kite Beach for both the KOTA and regular kiters to launch and land, and any time other than perhaps spring high tide, there is enough space for riders to spread themselves out along the rest of the beach for launching and landing. The public holidays will be another matter come the end of December, there will be very little room for kiters on 25/26 and 31/1 if those are nice days.
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