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  1. #15
    Senior Member PK1111's Avatar
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    Mostly good relations with kiters, I find a cheery wave and a grin goes a long way.
    Always good to chat with them when conditions are getting a bit challenging and there's usually some respect back for being out there.
    Best kiters I've spoken to tend to be at the tougher beaches / conditions.
    The worst are generally at the easier spots where they all club together and try to show off. Camber, Worthing and Hayling to name a few locations.

    Worst encounter was in Cape Town at a small wave windy morning at Sunset Beach. Riding a small wave down wind and a kiter had jumped and crash landed on me. Never apologised or made any attempt to see if I was ok.

    But overall, they are mostly good folk and as the autumn and winter sets in, I look forward to more improved relations.

  2. #16
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    most OK, but in Tenerife I rescued one kiter who then accused me of crashing in to him. Either he was genuinely mistaken, or more likely he had crashed with someone and was looking to blame someone to avoid paying the hire shop, who incidentally supported his story as I hired a board form a centre they opposed.
    Sometimes kiters jump and turn without looking, but there again I sometimes gybe without looking - live and learn.
    Boards: F2 Gorilla 76, Tabou Quadster 86, Fanatic Triwave 95, Starboard Kombatwave 96, F2 Stoke 115, JPFreeRace 125, Sails: Gaastra Poison 4.2, North Hero 4.2, North Ice 4.7, Simmer Icon 5.3, Gaastra Cross 6, Ezzy Elite 6.1, Tushingham Storm 6.5, Severne Turbo 7.5

  3. #17
    Senior Member Witchcraft's Avatar
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    On Fuerte, at most spots there isnt a problem but there is quite a problem at Glass Beach as often when that works, it is the only good wave and it is a fairly short wave of about 40m. Normally there will be 30+ windsurfers out, they all follow the same routine, sail upwind till a good, free wave comes, pick it up, ride the wave till the channel and jibe off it. Also there tends to be quite a lot of tourists on the beach and swimming. That does not really leave any space for kiters to keep their safety distance to others but still there can be 10 or more out or launching their kite next to the people on the beach. On any day you will see some near misses, kites crashing on or near people, lines getting stuck on people both in and out of the water, lines floating in the waves, etc. So far luckily only some minor injuries. At Flag beach there seems to be a lot more accidents, often non kiters being hurt, according to a guy of the beach guard there. Kites do crash, they have a lot more power, reach and far les control. I know one guy who had a proper cut of skin and flesh off his arm when windsurfing. I know another windsurfer who had his tendons in his wrist cut and cant work or windsurf again. I also know a few kiters who have injured themselves properly, one of them has both his ankles thrashed to bits, another slammed into the water and broke his neck. They seem to think it is fully OK to fly their kites over other people, even teachers do it when teaching on a crowded beach. If you say something if they come close, they tend to become agressive shouting "the beach and ocean is for everyone" or "where does it say I cant kite here". True, the road is for everyone as well but you are not allowed to drive a car twice as wide, forcing everybody out of your way. If some kids would fly their toy kite over other people, they will be told to move. These kites are far from toys.

    There seems to be a major lack of common sense with a lot of kiters, teachers and kiting organisations. Their safety rules are pretty much only to keep them safe. They are told to stay away from objects but not a word on other people. Also they may say "I am really carefull". That is what the drunk said as well when he got into his car and then hit someone else. When you fly a kite over other people, you are deliberately putting them in increased danger. The reason why it is forbidden to drink and drive is not to protect the driver......Anyone who is not putting others in danger has a right to stay safe him or herself. If you are the one needing more space for what ever sport you practice, you are the one needing to look for it, not forcing others to do so.
    Rant over.
    Bouke
    Witchcraft Windsurfing Fuerteventura

  4. #18
    Senior Member Silicon Beach's Avatar
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    I pretty much agree with you Bouke. Obviously they do have a point when they say to you: "the beach and ocean is for everyone", and we all have to get on with each other ... and we can't "un-invent" kite surfing ... we know all that. But, on balance, the ocean playground for windsurfers was a safer place before they were invented. Those of us around long enough to remember those days, and who have to put up with crowds of kites all the tme, know that only too well.

    Things change and life is about adapting to change, but the lists of things I would like to go back in time and 'uninvent' is long (Nuclear weapons, Trump, that North Korean geezer, kitesurfing etc).
    Last edited by Silicon Beach; 5th September 2017 at 09:59 AM.
    -----------------------------
    Currently writing the World's first Windsurfing Novel: 'Too Close to the Wind' - watch this space!
    ps check out my musings from El Medano: Life on the Reef
    -----------------------------
    Boards: Quatro Supermini Thrusters: 94 & 85
    Sails: Severne Blades.

  5. #19
    Senior Member Witchcraft's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silicon Beach View Post
    I pretty much agree with you Bouke. Obviously they do have a point when they say to you: "the beach and ocean is for everyone", and we all have to get on with each other
    Yes it is for everyone but everyone also has a right to be safe on the beach or ocean, or the only danger anyone is put in is caused by themselves. Accidents can still happen but out of mistakes not by knowingly putting others in increased danger. Everyone agrees you cant play football around other people or go motocrossing where people are mountain biking. Even if that is the best or only place. Even kiters wont do that.
    If you chose to do a sport that needs space, you need to look for it. I dont go close to surfers either.
    Bouke
    Witchcraft Windsurfing Fuerteventura

  6. #20
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    I have seen problems with windsurfers too. The amount of people that do not know how to handle their kit off the water is astonishing. Some of these people seem quite good on the water too, so why they cannot translate it to the beach is beyond me. I have lost count of the number of flying rigs and boards etc.

    It it seems to me education is the problem. Both sports need better safety awareness. We also need to be aware of the needs of each other's sports. How much room we need, how we move and how quickly we can react.

    segregation seems to work at spots like Hayling. At camber we usually only come into conflict on the inside as the baggers seem to like showing off close to the shore. Medano was a bit of a mess last time I was there, not sure how they can improve that. All seems very location dependent.

  7. #21
    Senior Member Silicon Beach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by phill104 View Post
    Medano was a bit of a mess last time I was there, not sure how they can improve that.
    ... by zoning it properly, officially (instead of just 'informally'), and then have the bomberos (life guards) 'police' it. Currently the kites launch off their own part of the beach, which works fine, but the local authorities need to make that official, and put up some notices warning innocent bystanders to be careful when walking on that part of the beach. They use it for teaching beginner kiters and there have been a few accidents involving poeple just walking past and getting caught up in kite lines.

    I'm OK with kites now, and have been for a long time. THe main problem for me is the numbers of kids, families, swimmers, 'surfers' (joke) etc in the water where we launch. This is what they need to zone before a serious accident occurs. Recently I checked my insurance to check that i was covered for 3rd party damage etc ... ie it's become quite serious now :-(
    -----------------------------
    Currently writing the World's first Windsurfing Novel: 'Too Close to the Wind' - watch this space!
    ps check out my musings from El Medano: Life on the Reef
    -----------------------------
    Boards: Quatro Supermini Thrusters: 94 & 85
    Sails: Severne Blades.

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