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Snowkite for a big man?

Forum for snow- and landkiters
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Peak 4, 8m
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Re: Snowkite for a big man?

Postby Sceotend » Sat Jan 30, 2021 4:52 pm

To report back.

I purchased a Peak 4 8m2 two months ago. I have now tried static flying a few times and 3 times on skis. I'm able to go upwind and feel that I can handle the very basics, basically going cross-wind back and forth. I have been pleasantly surprised how fast I can go and still feel safe and totally in control.

I started in very light gusty inland winds just for safety. I guess that was ultimately a good decision but the cost was rather high. I hated the kite at first. I tangled the lines badly, once really - about 5 hours - badly. Also, in light winds the kite with my skill set was just horrible: slow and hard to keep in form. The static wasn't fun either, more than once a gust yanked me and the next moment the wind died with the kite falling down. I think that if I had gone for 5m2 or less I could start with higher winds and it would have saved a lot of my time and frustration.

Now I have had a few sessions in proper winds, maybe 10 - 15 knots. I have also made a system to wrap up the lines and have had zero tangling problems after that. Those two higher winds sessions with skis have been a breeze: zero tangles, fast unpack / pack (about 5 min each) and self-launching/landing has been really easy and felt totally safe.

I think Peak 4 is almost perfect for my original first four priorities:

1. safety first (very important)
2. beginner but enthusiastic / learning orientated
3. affordable
4. durable

5. upwind: I knew that the Peak is not superb for upwind. I can now - with my little experience - go slight upwind, maybe about 20 - 25 degrees max given optimal conditions. Especially wind speed matters a lot. If wind is too much or too little or varies, the upwind angle goes away fast. I was surprised how fast I lost ground in strong gusts. That was probably mostly due to lack of my skills. But this seems to be the case for the more experienced too. I read that single skins have a higher d/l ratio and that pulls you to the side.

The rest of my list is either obvious or I cannot comment yet. I'm planning to buy a hydrofoil for the summer. With this experience I think I need another type of kite for that. I might be able to use the Peak in water after getting more experience. I think I'll go for a 10m2 used Soul if I manage to find one.

All in all I'm really happy with the Peak. Now I would do two things differently. The first is the size, go small first. The second one is about the packing / unpacking. I watched a few how-to vids before I took the kite out. I should have done more research on this. IMO, the most important thing is to do the landing/packing very carefully and have a system. I now use a couple of clamps I put on the lines before packing.

Thank you for all the commentators who helped me to choose this kite.
Last edited by Sceotend on Sat Feb 27, 2021 5:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Matteo V
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Re: Snowkite for a big man?

Postby Matteo V » Sat Jan 30, 2021 11:16 pm

And thanks for posting back here! That is the most important part of this forum - reporting back!

Your experience at your skill level is much more valuable than us long term kiters who are very likely to just be stuck in our ways.

As one of those "stuck in my ways" kiters, I'd suggest going with an inflatable to compliment your peak 4 size. Honestly, an 8m peak 4 would quiver well with lots of modern 8m SLE inflatables. The peak 4 8m is more like an 11m inflatable anyway.

So keep posting back here or in the hydrofoil forum!
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Sceotend (Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:28 am)
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Re: Snowkite for a big man?

Postby downunder » Sun Jan 31, 2021 6:09 am

Kitos Sceotend!

One ex-Helsinki kiter, living in AU now :)

What u just started is a life changing experience!

Congrats and good luck.

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Sceotend (Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:28 am)
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