Friday, October 17, 2014

A big let down

Should have been good, but it was gusty and crap. The gusts would be been great on the 16m but the lulls were too often and too long...

Did some riding on the Dialer too and while that was good it wasn't great.

Getting sick of gusty crap.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Post-typhoon ride

Crook as a dog yesterday, feeling well enough to ride today.

Gusty as hell, and the wind slowly dropped so I went from Limited to Dialer. Had a nice mellow time.

Discovered a funny mark on the Limited and lifted the footpad - huge crack :( must have happened on Sunday, but can't think of anything out of the ordinary...

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Pre-typhoon ride

South to the yacht harbor. Patrick Rebstock from Slingshot is there with Seigo, so there was some great strapless riding to watch. 

I, however, got on the water at 1 and didn't get off for 3 hours. Wind was pretty consistent so it was fun... some ok-ish jumps. Was going to pack up but after chatting to a kiwi I thought I'd go back out for a bit more... it was good.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Light but fun

Managed to get to the lake and the wind looked good but was all show and no blow. I really wanted to try out my S3 15 but couldn't be assed fiddling around and just went with the 21.

Which was both good and bad.

Bad because I had to land and launch a couple of times to clear knots out of the bridle, and good because the wind steadily dropped off until I had to leave for work.

Started on the Limited and had some fun. Then swapped for the Dialer and had some fun. Then gave up.

Mr Fujii... sigh... as an example of the sort of idiot blinkered behavior that goes on here:
Both of us were heading to the shore, me slightly behind him. I assumed he would push the tack as far as possible then come about, so I was getting ready for a change of direction myself. Then he just cut straight at the beach and stopped dead in front of me, parking his kite at the zenith.

Right in front of me. There was literally nowhere to go, and he just stood there, kite at 12 and me stuck a couple of meters behind him. I couldn't dive my kite to either side of him to get away cos there wasn't the space and even when he finally walked to the shore, he still just stood there with his kite at 12 blocking me.

Gah. Now imagine that on the roads.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Typhoon FedEx

Oops forgot to update...

Named this typhoon "FedEx" cos it delivered, but it was pretty crappy with its terms of service and delivery.

Erm... I seem to remember it being a good boost fest and lots of big tricks too, but forget the details. Started on the 13, ended up on the 10.

I did manage to splash down when the wind died, unhook and - snapped the carabina of the safety leash :o had to use a FSer one - yeuch.

So that was that.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Scooz me while I kiss the sky

Oof, dang. All the internets said the wind would be lighter than yesterday and falling off.

Nope.

We got 18 to 20 knots and gusts to 28 (if the weather station is to be believed). I swear it wasnt blowing that when I arrived, decided on kit and set up.

Started off light, just going upwind on the Limited, doing some rotations (fail central) then it just went all bat-shit insane.

I forgot how much fun it is to fly and float, Flysurfer style. Or just how big you can actually go on the 21. Or just how much effort it takes to hold all that power down... but, dang, it's worth the effort!

But after an hour of huge air, just big air won't cut it. Had to go to work anyway :(

What I learned today...
  • There's a bit of a trick to jumping the big Speed, which took me a time to get back. Seems to be just holding the line then, releasing the edge and popping hard. Mind you, every time I thought I had it, the same method didn't work the next time...
  • I get the most giggles and cackles out of the FSers by far... along with the most hair pulling.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Mellow hits the spot

Forecast was good and with the in-laws in town, I could sneak off for the afternoon.

Wind was a bit light so I went for the Crossbow 16 to make sure of some grunt. Took the Dialer cos I thought I might like to...

Enough to get going on the Limited, just, so I forced some rotations to get back in the habit. Even nailed some doubles...

Then the wind got light but not too light, so I went for the Dialer. Rusty!

Good session, had a nice time :)

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Rock on!

Surprise forecast, couple of days after the typhoon and we get a cracking good day.

Unfortunately, they're having a comp so the beach is COVERED in unused kites, lines and bars and there's literally nowhere to launch a kite, let alone set up.

Tough choice on the size, the little guys were riding 12 to 14 meters, but it's supposed to pick up continuously through the afternoon, so I risk the 13. Pump up in the grass (spiky things everywhere, look out), carry it across to a freshly vacated spot and lay out my lines, threading between other kites.

Got into the air and on the water... great! Going to be good. Spent a couple of hours whooping it up, but the wind drops off so I take a break. When I think it's picked up, I go back out... more woohoo fun, but the wind drops off again after an hour or so, so I call it a day.

Some good jumps and rotations - front rolls are rusty. Occasionally in the gusts I had to fight to hold edges, and a few times went wa-aaay downwind just a few feet off the water as I got hauled off. Great fun, much better than the typhoon day!

Weather was reported as 15 to 22 knots, gusts to 32!!! 25˚C at 64%, climbing throughout the day.
Wind felt like 50% comfy-powered, 35% WOOHOO, 10% bah-humbug and 5% Whoa Nelly!

What I learned today...
  • Soh is a little bitch.
  • Back is good, pain almost nonexistent and legs working as well as I can remember they can.
  • Want a kite that loops better...!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Lame-ass typhoon is lame. Laaaaaaame.

Well that was the lamest typhoon to date. Took the 10m and 7m to the lake cos I was grossly over-optimistic. For the first 30 minutes it looked good, then it petered right out. Got a drink, the wind came back but it was only good in the rare gusts... a few giggles but mostly just topping up the tanks.

Got to ride the 2014 Park 10m for a few minutes in the gusts but didn't get a real feel for it. Feels a lot  like the Nitro, same light bar and rapid response but I have to say, the Nitro was more stable - kept front stalling the Park on the beach, needed a firm hand on the bar. The bar was fantastic though, loved it. Same kind of jump feel too...

Moment of the day was a front roll down loop transition then landing on a cresting wave and riding it out, slack-lined, into the new direction. Total fluke but it rocked.

Weather was reported as 19 knots, falling to 12; gusts to 24 before I got there :(

What I learned today...
  • The Limited seems picky about pad placement. 1/-1 seems to be the sweet spot... or maybe I'm just adapting to the non-Door shape.
  • I really don't think looping the XBs is a good plan...

Monday, September 22, 2014

Crack-a-lackin'!

Well, that's more like it. Was hoping for wind on the holiday tomorrow, but that wasn't going to happen. The wife managed to get time off work to cover me, so I could go to the lake by 4pm. Niiii-thh!

People were saying it was no good, but they were going for 12m kites and I thought it'd pick up, so I went for the Speed3 12 cos I really wanted to ride it after the fun of last night...

Went well on the Flydoor for a good while, then there was a parting of the ways in the SPL and I had a kite that wouldn't fly right... it'd stay in the sky, parked at 2pm and pull so I body dragged back to shore and packed it up.

Had the 16m XB on the beach, so up it went. I was feeling pretty good, so being over-powered that much was just FUN. Jump-fest...

Packed up after sun set... although there's a good 30 minutes of light left, forgot that.

Was probably going just as high on the 12, but it was much easier to ride so there's something in that old chestnut then I guess, after all.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Light but not lame

Not expecting much, and it delivered. Luckily, I was just in the mood for an easy cruise so it worked out well. Legs feeling better, but not perfect yet...

Just enough wind to get back to the start, and do a couple of silly tricks on the tack. Good enough to keep me happy.

I should try the Flydoor with the pads back one step, and put the new fin on. Should really get around to the repairs that need doing too :o

Monday, September 15, 2014

Back in the saddle

So, you might have noticed no posts for a while... stuffed my back again at the start of the holidays and after the crippling pain passed, my legs stopped working at full power and other weird things. Back to about 80% now so thought I could get back on the water.

Wind looks good but am a bit hesitant... suck it up and go for the 13m (want to be powered so I can just laze back against the kite) and the Limited. Good choice, mostly ok-powered and don't need to work the kite much until the wind drops off at the end of the sesh.

Could have been a good jump fest but my legs aren't responding well enough to hold and edge, and I can't "feel" my feet... so it was a bit crap but at the same time good.

Bit more time needed then...

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

I am the lawnmower man

There was even grass clippings in the water.

Missed a 16 knot plus session on Tuesday at Mie, today's forecast looked the same so hopefully...

Got over there just before 2... hmm, 12 knots on the yacht club. Feels like too much for the 21 so I go for the 16m XB. Go out on the Dialer; would be having fun but there's so much weed or grass in the water, it's wrapping the fins and creating so much drag I just can't ride...

Decide to put extensions on the 16 and try the TT: 6m left-overs from the old S3 21. Yeah, kinda works... mow the lawn mostly but hey it's summer - what can you do. Wouldn't riding at all without extensions...

Weather was reported as 14 to 10 knots; gusts to 18 at 2pm, 29 degrees C at 80%.
Wind felt like I should have been riding upwind - just - but wasn't.

What I learned today...
  • Extensions work.
  • Grass in the water sucks!
  • Old skool spreader bar pad is the shizzle.

Monday, July 28, 2014

End of month pile-up

Forecast changed overnight... light wind forecast but same in Hikone and Otsu, which usually means rideable wind.

Got down the lake at 1:30, set up the S3 21. Out on the Dialer... easily riding but not going upwind. Do some walking until about 3 when the wind pick up. Switch to the Limited at 3:45... gah. Have as much fun as I can til just after 4, when I get off and head to work... just as the wind is cranking up :(

Weather was reported as 8 to 10 knots (balls), gusts to 18; 30 degrees C at 50%. Hmm.
Wind felt like I should have been going upwind to I should have been getting a smaller kite.

What I learned today...

  • Wear the goddamn wetsuit. Power wedgies blow.
  • Actually do need a spreader bar pad - not for the spreader bar, for the loops the webbing goes through. Ouchie.
  • My elbows are killing me :(

Sunday, July 27, 2014

And that's 5. Well, gosh...

Supposed to be the day today, forecast looks good... even looks good when I get to the beach. Early for once...

Should have gone for a bigger kite, but there you go. Went out on the Dialer but just wasn't in the mood. Changed it for my first Flydoor but that was too heavy and dull. Went and got the new one but that equally didn't spin my wheels. Tried to ride the Limited all the time but that was an exercise in frustration.

I did try a few very lame, very low kite loops to see if it would kill me. It didn't but the sun burn might... damn, I gotta put that stuff on in layers before I get anywhere near the lake :(


Weather was reported as 9-6-12-12-12-10 knots, gusts to 20. 28 degrees at 58%.
Wind felt like mostly underpowered with gusts to meh.

What I learned today...
  • If it looks like a 13 day, rig the 16... cos summer SUCKS.
  • Seems I've gone off my Flydoor - feels draggy, hard bloody work and just not fun any more :( maybe time to change the stance. What am I going to do when underpowered?
  • Put the damn short john wetsuit on. Wedgie central...

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Oh stop - 4 now?

Well, it was better than yesterday but just not enough to ride the Limited upwind easily... but it were better n' nowt!

Weather was reported as 9 to 12 knots, gusts to 20 after I left :-/

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

3rd for the month?

Lame.

Forecast was for crap and I only drove by on the way home from the hardware store cos why not. There was a bit of wind and so again, why not.

Bit of riding around to keep my hand in... lots of walking. Ah well...

Friday, July 11, 2014

Weak-ass typhoon is weak-ass.

Went to the lake expecting to ride the 21 AT BEST and having a back seat of things to meddle with to fill the afternoon. Instead, the wind was up, steady and rising. Huh...

Went out on the 16 and the Limited, and actually had a bit of fun.
The wind kept picking up and so I went and got the 13.
The wind kept picking up and so I went and got the 10...!

So that was a nice surprise. I got a little underpowered on the TT so I thought I'd change it out for the Dialer, but only got one good tack till the wind lulled enough for me to realize that I couldn't handle any walking so I decided to call it a day.

Pretty good day considering the crap forecast; the typhoon might have nailed the southern parts but we got almost none of the weather...

Weather was reported as 9 to 12 knots (LOL) gusts to 20; 29˚ at 67%.
Wind felt like 15 to 20 knots fairly steady. Picked up steadily, held, then dropped off...

What I learned today...
  • Relearned - the 16 isn't that much of a dog as I remembered. 'Specially not after months of flying the 21!
  • Find the top end of the Limited is... limited. Bottom end if fabulous so I can't complain too much but I think I might try moving the pads to the heel-side just a tad, as they're now centered or a little to the toe-side, it seems....
  • I so prefer to be just powered on a smaller kite now, and seem to jump just as high.
  • Now I need to stop being a chicken shit and start stunting it up.
  • Loops on the XBs are tricky... sheeting all in chokes the shit out of it, sheeting right out is violent - in the middle somewhere is better.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Downwinding

Forecast was good but it failed to deliver. I barely got to ride and it was all downwinders but strangely satisfying.

Especially when the cool kids couldn't keep their kites in the air... once slamming down a few feet from my head when I'd fallen into the water. Gimp.

Weather was reported as 8 to 10 knots, gusts to 15. 27 degrees at 66%.

What I learned today...
  • There's a rip on a seam and a hole in the canopy... poor old S3 21 is showing its age.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

And now it's time for a bucket of sangria...

Light wind expected, but it was same in Hikone and Otsu and that usually means it's rideable.

Well, it was for a half hour or so but then it was up and down and gusty nasty - got lobbed and backrolled the "jump" riding it out - and then lulled to nothing.

So it sucked, but I hung around for as long as possible, being a sad desperate tosser. Sigh.

Weather was reported as 10 to 12 knots; 26˚C at 66%.
Wind felt like crap.


Thursday, June 26, 2014

Skirting the shore

Not some clever pun about summer fashions on the girls but a statement of the distance of my tacks today...!

Forecast was worse the risk of a day without responsibilities... looked ok-ish for the 13 when I arrived at 12 but I knew it was supposed to pick up so I risked the "small" kite.

Hard work to start with, working the kite to get moving and upwind. Gets easier, and more fun.

2 hours later, I'm pretty done - arms etc sore from working the kite hard, legs etc sore from doing stuff... time to call it quits and head to work.

Wind was 8 to 16 knots when I arrived and was pushing 20 when I left. It was good... except for the sunburn.

Forgot to add: SOME-THING-IS-TOUCH-ING-ME!!!

Stood on something slippery, thick and muscled that squirmed underfoot and gave me the heebie-jeebies... I jumped and squeaked like Grant Imahara.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Improvement impresses

Another light wind day scheduled... but the wind picked up gradually and it turned out to be oddly fun, doing rotations and getting real close to perfecting back roll transitions after some pfaffing around on the Dialer.

Having to go to work meant I cut it short as the wind was picking right up... sigh.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Sigh...

A few tacks were had but it was just too light to ride much, and it was up n' down playing silly buggers with my lust.

Weather was reported as 8 to 12 knots, 24 degrees at 65%.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Too light

Wind was up, the forecast wasn't. A few of us had gathered... to be disappointed. Riding a few tacks but walking til it drops right off and dies. Oh well, at least I got out of the house for a bit.

What I learned today...
  • Need to pre-stretch my DIY pigtails... yikes!
  • Need to do the mixer!
  • Need to learn how to make a directional go upwind when the wind is light.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Forgot but not forgotten

Eep, forgot to fill this out...

Good ride on the 21 and the Limited. Wind picked up til I was uncomfy so I swapped for the XB but then the wind dropped. A few tacks on the Dialer but it was a waste of time so I packed up and went to work...

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Worth the effort

Had the day off and looking at the forecast wasn't really sure I wanted to bother with the trip... ended up glad I did though, despite having to avoid the lo-oong traffic jams on the highway by taking the "local" roads.

Thought the wind was good enough when I arrived for the S3 12 and a boost session, but I was wrong. A couple of tacks were a waste of time.

Out with the 21. Ride for a bit but then it drops. I messed with untangling the twisted mini-5th and by the time I'd done that, I was thinking the wind had picked up some.

Yeah, it had. Gradually went from holding ground to fully depowered kite.

So that was fun... gave up when I was too tired.

Weather was reported as 12 to 16 knots, gusts to 25 :o 27 degrees C at 75%.
Wind felt like underpowered a lot to approaching uncomfortably over-powered. 25 knots might explain that...!

What I learned today...
  • Have to sort the 15 out!!!
  • hop-to-toeside carve transitions - need more board input, it seems.
  • Orange and peach frozen sherbets are in season! w00t.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Moby Dick gets me moving

Another afternoon off... same plan as yesterday, without the having-to-go-to-work at the end of it...

Yeah, it's light. Time for the Moby Dick to come out and play again. Try the Limited - not much joy. Try the Flydoor - better. Wind drops, I take a break and bring the Dialer back.

Wind picks up, have some fun on the Flydoor... harness bugs me though and while I'm enjoying the stunting, I wish I had the seat harness on.

Pick up the Dialer to change it up and head out... I can ride it, but I'm not carving anything - kite too slow! Play with changing footing and stuff... pretty good fun actually.

Get off the water and head home... pretty good day, actually!

Weather was reported as 6 to 12 knots; gusts no more than 18 at 10am; 19 degrees C at 64%.
Wind felt like more powered than was comfortable with the waist harness...

What I learned today...
  • Back/Front rolls - the S3 21 just lifts you way the hell up in the sky and you dangle around looking upwind for ages :)
  • Need a seat harness for that mad power of the 21.
  • ... maybe the 15 would have been better...

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Republican Jesus* back in the game.

Got the afternoon off, the forecast looked ok so I headed to the lake. Took the S3 21, with the supplies to get it back in the air, just in case the wind wasn't happening.

It wasn't, so I replaced the broken bridle lines and replaced the pulleys. Determined to test fly it, I changed and went over the beach.

Spent another half-hour maybe sorting out the bridle - clearly, when the Z-line broke it looped through the B and C bridles and then I did knotted the two broken bits together when I packed it up... slow and steady sorts it out.

Inflates and launches fine, everything seems to work. A few crappy tacks then I have to go work...

Find a shop with blue Monster and orange juice ice on the way, so I'm double-happy ;)

Weather was reported as 14 falling to 8 knots... it was mostly unridable by the time I got the gear out though :-/

What I learned today...
  • Still a few kinks to work out of the S3 21... notably, the too-short mini-5th.
  • Sunblock time.
  • Found another lose thread on the Switch wetsuit... between that and the hole in the Hyperflex, I'm a bit frustrated. Might have to brave the cold water in the short john.
* Big, fat, white, slow and saves! sessions.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Directional practice was good...

Hmm. It seems we're not past the gusty lame season yet...

Got an hours fun on the Dialer, but the rest of it was crap. Gusts too much for the 13 but in-between, not enough for the 13. Set the 10 up cos I thought I would be able to use it but... only on the Dialer.

Sigh.

Tried some kite loop preparation OMG what a waste of time with the 13... forgot the 60cm bar and it just doesn't work on the 48cm.

Weather was reported as 13 to 10 knots, gusts to 22; 20˚C at 54%.
Wind felt like crap. Uncontrolled in the gusts, just enough some of the time and not enough the rest.

What I learned today...
  • Fuckin' making an LEI go upwind is a lot more work than the Speed3, especially the additional bar pressure. I'm unfit, again.
  • Dialer turns better with more aggressive weight shifts, front and rear...

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Gusty but crappy.

There's the full gamut.

Tsu again. Forecast was good and the wind arrived; it was just late - as in, when I was packing up.

So I went out on the Speed3 12 at 2pm but wasn't having joy. At 3 I changed to the Pscyho4 19... better. But over-powered in the gusts and being blown downwind, yet I can't really jump properly. So it was a bit crappy...

Got lazy on the landing, just thought I'd pull the safety but I misjudged the distance to a log and ripped the kite :( the old "I've decided to sell this kite" curse strikes again. Not a biggee but damn annoying...

Weather was reported as 12 to 14 knots, gusts to 22. 22˚C at 41%.
Wind felt like a little overpowered in the gusts and underpowered at the other end.

What I learned today...
  • Choose your landing spots and methods more carefully.
  • Choose your kite more carefully - 13m XB would have been better.
  • Might be time to dig out the t-shirt and short john suit.