Sunday, May 26, 2019

Kitesurfing in cooler weather at Seaford, mishap while launching

Session 474. Headed to Seaford with a forecast of good NW wind.  There was plenty when we got there and not much beach.  I rushed setting up then got a  launch from James with me in the water and the kite on the beach.  The sun was directly behind the kite so I couldn't see the lines or the rigging.  Big mistake.  When James let the kite go the kite looped and dragged me onto the beach then crashed into the dunes. I pulled the safety. There was a tangle in bridle that caused this.

Here is a video of the drama ** to come

Luckily the kite was not damaged.

Contributing factors to this mishap were:
  • Haven't kited for a while (rusty)
  • In a hurry to launch
  • Didn't double check the lines and rigging
  • Launching with the kite towards land (much safer to launch with it over water)
  • Launching into the sun (couldn't see the lines)
  • Narrow beach, not much room (may beaches along the Bay aee eroding due to sea level changes).
It was a relief to get onto the water and offshore.  I settled down and did a few runs and caught some waves.  Coming back in the kite felt odd.  On the shore it back stalled so I attempted to land it.  It was out of control again so I crash landed it a second time.  The bladder was deflated, which eventually means you can't control the kite.

I assumed that there was a small hole in the bladder from the first crash, but I pumped up the kite later at home and it was fine.  So I didn't tighten the valve properly (In a hurry to launch).

The wind dropped a bit so I switched to my 10m kite and had an enjoyable session in the waves and was feeling much better for it.

I used a chest harness for the Gopro.  It works well and the camera is easy to adjust and turn on and off.



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