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Techniques for rescuing runaway hydrofoil and bringing it to the beach?

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Techniques for rescuing runaway hydrofoil and bringing it to the beach?

Postby fun2kite » Wed Oct 03, 2018 1:09 pm

Hi all,

I don't think the techniques of saving somebody's hydrofoil, while yourself being on a hydrofoil, was discussed at any recent time. Can you share your techniques on this thread please?

Last week a foiler had chicken loop break and was trying to deal with his kite, while his foil floated away. I attempted to help only to discover how hard it is. I never before tried to rescue someone's foil and was trying to improvise on the spot.
First I tried to keep my foil on my feet , fly the kite with one hand and hold the other foil with another hand and try pull myself towards the beach. This was very uncomfortable and really did not work well.

What I eventually figured out to do was to push the other foil towards the beach with one hand, while my board on my feet in straps. As foil sailed towards the beach I was dragging myself with a kite to follow it..
The other foil kept turning left with the current.. So I only had like 5-7 m run every time before I had to push the other foil towards the beach again. This worked, but took a lot of time.

Then I thought how else could I do it? And I really can't come up with really effective way to bring it to the beach. Twintip, I can pick up and ride with holding it on my hands behind the bar, but foil board???

My second foil-board rescue story amazingly happened on the same day, but unlike the first story, the kite of the rider was in the water, but not broken. He just could not relaunch the kite because of marginal wind and strong current without his foil-board which floated away. The solution here was to give him my foil-board so the the could use it against the current to re-launch the kite, while I myself body-drag downwind to get his board which floated away.. once he re-launched he caught up with me and we switched boards back.

Share your technique and stories of rescuing foil-boards.


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Re: Techniques for rescuing runaway hydrofoil and bringing it to the beach?

Postby Laughingman » Wed Oct 03, 2018 6:38 pm

Just put one foot on each board and ride them both in rodeo style!

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Re: Techniques for rescuing runaway hydrofoil and bringing it to the beach?

Postby edt » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:12 pm

You know what they say "Secure your own mask before assisting others" Some stuff is just too dangerous to do. Here's what I would do. Foil all the way to the beach upwind of the runaway foil. Drop my foil, then body drag back out. It should only take a minute or so because you are body dragging downwind. Foil back to your friend let him have the board, then body drag back to shore and walk upwind to your own foil. Holding one foil while foiling on another is unnecessary risk. What an embarrassing way to possibly get injured. Save your risk for awesome tricks you are doing.

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Re: Techniques for rescuing runaway hydrofoil and bringing it to the beach?

Postby Foil » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:50 pm

only had to rescue another foil once, again it was due to lack of wind, kite down and tidal flow,
easy rescue.
I always have a leash with me so I clipped on my own foil and body dragged back to shore slowly, my foil following on a leash, and the other board I put under my arm with the foil just clear of the water and made my way to shore.
I have a full leash with retractable coil, on the occasions I think the leash is not required I still carry a twin clasp ended short leash in case the kite goes down in no wind or other kitemare situations, then I can clip on to prevent the foil drifting away,

Not long ago on a big lake the kite fell to the water in no wind, and I lost touch with my foil as I fell in. my solution was to fire off the safety on to the one line and swim backwards to my foil, with the kite on safety it was easy to swim backwards, I then clipped the leash onto the foil, reloaded the safety, and waited a few minutes for the wind to reappear so the kite would then relaunch.

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Re: Techniques for rescuing runaway hydrofoil and bringing it to the beach?

Postby Peter_Frank » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:29 pm

What I do:

If kite has gone down and too light to relaunch (easy, or at all), the board will at first be upwind usually, but pretty fast dolphin downwind, even in the lightest wind as it is the surface waves that gets the board moving.
Sometimes the rider (or yourself) can not retrieve the board before it passes you too far away, and this is BUMMER for three reasons :x

1. The board can be damaged when hitting something on lower water, or it could get dangerous for others maybe.
2. The rider has to be in the water for a VERY long time if drifting to shore, maybe cold and having to swim as not much flotation in say a shorty or thin summersuit and a harness only.
3. The rider has almost zero chance of relaunching, whereas sitting on the board, it is a lot easier, and even if not, it is relaxing and safe and you can even steer towards where you want to end.

This one is easy, as you ride down to the "lost" board, swap boards and ride his/hers board back up to the rider (or boarddrag up if pretty close) so he/she is "safe" and can sit on the board.
Then just kiteloop down to your own board now, and everything is okay :thumb:

The other situation is a board that sits on its side so not drifting toward the rider in the water with kite down.
A rare situation in my experience, but today with such light hydrofoils it can happen.
Ride to the board, switch boards and drag yourself with his/hers board to the rider - and then you bodydrag yourself up to your board again - or even better, stay and chat with him/her while you wait for your own board to pedal down to you (as you have of course left it mast down) :thumb:

If the "lost" board is way to far downwind, you have to take your own board ashore and go get the drifting board out to the rider, of course.

If the board is far upwind, I would either ride or drag the board downwind for a while, stop and drag up to my own board (which is dolphining towards you btw), and ride or drag it downwind past the other board, and so on, so I never get too far away from any of them thus always in sight :D

Would not try to ride with another foil under my arm - possible if powered, but not safe IMO, but might just be a wuzz in this respect, I know :roll:

So one board at a time is my solution, has been and will be.

8) PF

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