Archie's Northerly ~12-18Kn (30mins)
Went out on Monday back to the same sand launching spot with Ben. He helped get mine up in the air but then had lots of difficulty launching his own. Turned out to be REALLY blustery and the kite probably needed a little more air to keep its shape. Wasn't particularly pleasant and didn't do much past get out on the water.
Ben finally got his kite up, but dropped out of the sky when getting ready to go near the rocks. The kite fell onto the rocks before catching a gust and shooting off. No damage to the kite, but scary for later solo efforts at low tide. After one run he then lost his board in the surf and had to park the kite to find the board swept all the way down to the south of the beach. Not a great day.
Archies NNE ~13-16Kn (1h)
Early Saturday and I was a bit surprised to find the wind up enough for a session even though WillyWeather and PredictWind had it pegged below 12 and coming NW. Airport reading of 13-15 felt about right though. Scott had a much smoother launch with lots of beach to work with. He eventually got up enough courage to start diving the kite and going for a sand skate. Not sure if it was on purpose but the technique he was trying was very similar to a water start so I encouraged him to keep at it. The beach was furrowed with about 20 heel carves by the end of the session. Carina had her first go too, and with Scott holding the kite I could help Carina get the launch under control. Went much smoother. I could also hold her on the ground using the back rope on the harness when it got a bit big on her.
Went out for another 45 min session with a fair bit of headway upwind to start off, then a couple more jumps on the way out when the kite had the power. Got slowly worse and had to really work the kite to get going. Eventually had lost all the upwind gains and dropped the kite for Scott to have another go. More furrows for 15 mins before I was was keen to go out for another quick session.
Felt very refreshing to have an extended break and watch someone else working the kite to get some ideas to test. Thought it might be a little odd to have to give up the board for Scott & Carina to practice, but it's probably going to be more interesting overall and make me want to go out hard.
Archie's NE ~13-15Kn (45min)
Even though the tide was in late Sunday afternoon, Scott was prepared to help launch and watch from the beach. Had to go into the water to get it up, but the wind felt constant enough to not be too much of an issue. Made some initial headway, but struggled again with lowering winds. Felt a little odd to be heading skew to the beach. Got to work on feeling my way for upwind potential regardless of heading.
Managed a couple of wave jumps. Landed all of them, but I'm not getting enough speed to continue. Might be partly due to the wind, but I'm also possibly thinking too much about the oncoming ramp and getting a good pop that the kite position isn't even really registering. I know sometimes I'm diving it as I'm approaching the wave to give more power to pull against, but it's not really a load & pop, more like power up and launch. For the moment I'm happy that I'm staying upright even after more air.