Sunday, January 31, 2010

Low calorie wind

Today was a light wind day. Being a full time kiteboard instructor has it's advantages. One of the main advantages is being at the beach everyday. As many of my mainland friends will attest, wind comes and wind goes. Lately, the wind has been gone. But, for a brief stretch, we had a little wind. Soon, the wind is coming back, real soon. So are you ready?

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Heavy Rain

Mid-winter in Maui, you come to expect the rain. Last night and this morning the rain came down...hard. If you were expecting clearing wind from the North, it was not going to happen. There was way too much moisture in the air; therefore no heating effect. Tomorrow, if the humidity doesn't go away, don't count on wind. I am still working on the "Mid-day Instant Report" suggestions are always welcome. My plan is to a quick shot interview of various kiters coming out of the water. Karen was actually talking about a double back roll attempt.

Report: Sunday..a light wind maybe...Our next swell in line is expected to arrive Sunday morning and will peak just short of warning levels. Take a couple days off..then towards the end of the week the return of trades....maybe.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Make Your Own Wax

I love searching the internet for fun things to do on these rainy winter days. In the past four months, I have been riding nothing but my 6'3" Rusty. So, I try to keep a solid coat wax on. Just like surfing, you want to wax the board almost to nose, never wax the rails, keep wax off the bottom, and be generous. I mostly use Sticky Bumps tropical or Sex Wax tropical. Don't get colored wax, it looks like tar. So, here is how to make you own organic wax.

Report: Tomorrow to 15 NE. Friday go surf. Saturday the return of the trades for a couple of days...if we are lucky more. Good Luck

Surf Sufficient- Organic Surf Wax from on Vimeo.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Element of Style

Add skatestyle to your kiting

This is the sequel to the art of soul. Each of us when we kite have a vision of what it is supposed to look like. Yesterday's post talked about soul of the equipment, today we are going to take a look at how to look good riding that gear. When I teach, I use efficiency as a standard to get my students from A to B. As a rider progresses, techniques improve. Yet, I see everyday the same thing, a rider who attempts to do a trick without mastering some of the elements of style. An example of this is when you jump do you grab? Grabs are a key elements in make what ever trick you do look better. Watching Shawn Richman for the last two years, it is sometimes hard to noice his grabs. But trust me, they are there. He sometimes fails the trick because of the extra effort of the grab.
Watch the video, this is my good buddy Brad Edwards skateboarding. I grew up surfing and skating with Brad. He was always amazing. Watch the extent of flow Brad creates when pulling of his move. He combines new tricks while throwing down some old school style. Now, next time in the water, throw a grab, hold...repeat.

Friday, January 22, 2010

The Art of Soul: Part1

Foam Dust

Kiteboarding is a new sport taking on attributes of an old one. Surfing is the mother of all extreme water sports. Born from the ancients, it has now crossed cultures and boundaries. Kiteboarding is a child. It has growth pains and is still in the learning process. Being a veteran 27 year surfer, it pains me to see many a rider going out for a session without the slightest knowledge of it's predecessor. Like the ancients, I believe part of the man transgresses his blood, sweat and tears when he shapes his board. I love the idea that someone shaped my board. In contrast, I don't like mass produced boards. Ironically, my twin-tip and kite could be popped by the millions from China and I really don't care. But, for me, surfboards are personal. My life has revolved around them for 3/4 of my life.
Watch the short above and you'll see the years of experience that goes into the shape of that board. Everything he does, is feel. Just like the bar, feel is has the greatest impact on style. Each shaping stroke is one motion, elongated, flowing and sculpting an image. Image and thought create the board, not the machine cranking out 033942. Each board has a personality and story, not just a serial number.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Mid-day Update

Half Time

So, this is my half time report. You noticed I wasn't wet from kiting. Well, the wind was nuking, but past 55 degrees in the afternoon. Today, I saw 5 lifeguard rescues. I love seeing the rescues. What? Well, I know that the lifeguards up at Kanaha are learning how to kite. This is good thing. Today was tricky, switching wind, constantly gusting and changing direction. For the Maui local, this usually isn't a problem. For the visitor, over kite sizing usually leads to problems. In the morning, the wind and surf out the back was solid was fantastic, you just had to get out there. Now, get out there!

Report: My spidey senses think there will be a return of the trades. Tomorrow? Most likly a switch to south, then Kona. Saturday, a chance at some Kihei action with a Kona switch. Then.... light trades for Sunday. The surf is non-stop action and energy contining over the weekend.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Loco Moco

The first live broadcast came and went. So what did I learn: 45 seconds goes quick, be a little more organized, and have fun. I hid in the bushes during the filming. I know I will get better, so no worries there. We will see how tomorrows report goes. As always if you have any comments and suggestions, please let me know.

Report: We are going have nice wind for two days. So, get ready for a taste of Loco Moco. The swell is not going to back down, and outside was large (8-14+). I will have the report around 9:30 to 9:45am (HST). So, see you at the beach. Good Luck!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Technology is great

So, my tech-man Oliver and I spent the afternoon getting ready to put together the capabilities for the first "live" Kitebeach Report. Oliver is a great hacker, who understands how all these electronics work. He is also a great web designer who got me hooked up with blogger. He showed me the way, and I have been working out the kinks ever since. If you haven't noticed, the blog seems to change everyday. I am just trying to get a feeling or flavor for this site. I really appreciate all the help from Oliver. Thank You!

Report: Well, if all goes well tomorrow, I will be giving my first live report around 10am. (HST) Don't expect much on the first go, but it will get better. I am also going to tweet a half-time report around 2pm (HST). As it goes...Good Luck

Sunday, January 17, 2010

A weather conspiracy

Guy Hagi

The Chinese? The Americans? The Russians? Who is controlling the weather these days? Well, I have my own's the weatherman. Yes, the weatherman. How could this be, you ask? Think about the computers that these people have at their power. High powered supercomputers making huge computations. The notion that weathermen have absolutely exact forecasts of the weather for months in advance would also be of interest to insurance companies, flip-flop manufacturers, the hat industry, the suntan lotion industry, bikini manufacturers, travel agencies, and kiteboard instructors. Just imagine what it would be to know with absolute certainty what the weather is going to be like in, say, two months time. Why, millions could be made if one were in the right business. And perhaps millions have been made. Who knows? Think about the economic power, all the industries making money on the precept of a future heat wave. So, next time you watch the evening news, look deeper, for the weatherman is already computing your future...Good Luck

Report: A strengthening high pressure throughout the week. Get it, why the gettins good, a front is skirting the island on Friday.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Peanut butter spoon

Sticky Wind

This week was like a peanut butter spoon. It's that spoon that you get the rest of the peanut butter out of the bottom of the jar, and the wind has been like that. A little sticky, still tasty, and but sucks if you leave in the sink. Today, the wind was sticky, if you got a good line and a good puff, you were on the way. Light winds are fun and easy, but they are a lot of work. As for the forecast, I am 2 for 2. So here goes for another 3 day this time.

Report: The high presure still sits above us, so the light trade pattern will continue. The storm track has shifted just high enough to keep the winds going all next week. Sunday: 15-20 E, look for the afternoon to be better, Monday, 18-22 ENE. Tuesday: 18-25 ENE. Surf will ramp up on Sunday, and the swell pattern will continue all week. Look for solid surf every where.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Opening Day

Jesse Spotting

Today was like opening day at the track. All the pageantry, the hats, the flowers, all the kites lined up on the beach, poised and ready to fly. Really? Actually, I am 1 for 1 so far. The wind was 18-22 from the NE. It was nice and steady, a nice swell and really light crowds. Obviously, not everyone reads this blog. Let them be stuck, thinking a computer knows better than a live person. Deep Blue vs Kasparov. There were smiles all over the beach. Good friends I haven't seen in a couple of weeks, launching, laughing, heckling, and just hanging around. Tom, one of my old students showed up from the mainland. I can't tell you how stoked I am seeing one of my students out riding around having a blast. He commented that he hadn't kited since November, join the club. My muscles cried, "Where have you been?" Fixing, relaxing, computing, mechanicing, and surfing. Now, I can say kiting. Finally, it's good to see World Champ Jesse Richman out tearing it up. I would've watched, but I was busy

Report: 15 to 20 E tomorrow. Still lots of waves, and light and steady wind.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Report

Everyone at the beach today kept asking what is the wind going to be like? So, I went over the charts and here is my conclusion: Friday, NE wind 18 to 22, Saturday E 15-20. My only suggestion, is always the same, bring all your kites. Basically, there is a little high pressure ridge to our north. It sticks around for about a week. So, the winds are trade, light, then south, then get strong at the beginning of next week. The swell is lined up, one after another. I'll keep you posted. This is definately looks better. Good Luck

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Girls just wanna have fun!

My wife at the KB4girls Clinic

Right before the break in the wind, World Champ Kristen Boese gave a clinic for the girls. I actually had to teach that day, but it does make me crack up when I spot on the forums that girls can't kite. Here, at Kitebeach not only do they kite, but they rip. Watching Kristen with one eye, my wife with other, and simultaneously giving a self-rescue lesson is no short task. It's funny how my wife who is a very new kiter, is all ready in a video. The top video, is funny 3 minutes of kiting and 3 minutes of credits. The bottom video is a slide show with a girly feel.
...and I'm not your average girl

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


The Gorch

Sharp cactus, crotchity old French-Candian windsurfers, dust, and the cool Sea of Cortez are all the back drop of the La Ventana Kite-Expo this week. I have fond memories of that dust bowl. This is where it all began for me in the winter of 2002-2003. We actually started earlier, but that is another story. We drove down from San Diego, and planted ourselves in a sandy camp ground for 1 dollar a day. Things were different then, for one thing, the windsurfers absolutely hated the kiters. As I look at some of the pictures off the web, I see how the place has been developed, and I can see the resorts are soon on there way.
My Old Cabrinha Blacktip

On Cristmas Eve, 2002, I got my best ride every, all the way across the bay. Then, right in the middle of my ride, one of my lines snapped. Of course, I didn't know how to self-rescue, so I paddled my board in to shore, from 1 mile out in the dark. I got back to campsite right in time for Top-Ramen, tequila, and Menudo. This goes with my first rule of kiting: Don't go out farther than you want to swim back. This rings true, especially for Maui.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Water is Personal

Jaws: The Ultimate Machine

Today was an interesting day. There were light trades, giant surf and lot's of water moving. It was solid. This has been the 5th surf "event" of the year. It has not only been big, but consistently big: swell after swell, week after week. The models suggest a break, not in the surf, but in the light trade pattern. So, this means a high pressure is building. Jaws was crunching today, a couple of med-vacs came through, sucking up it's prey. Don't kid, it was crazy consistent, sets on top of sets. Hold tight, there's more, another one is on the way for W/Th. But, again, the models suggest a building high pressure ridge starting Friday. Now let's make it happen.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

The Agitator 2...a new beginning?

Over the next couple of months, I have plans to do some research on the early days of kitebeach. I really want to talk to the legends and see how it all started. I have heard many stories and rumors about the early days. This video, is how I imagine it was like for Cory Roeseler in the early days at the Gorge. Just use your imagination...2012 is coming!

Solving the Need — A new skiing frontier from Jason Starr on Vimeo.

Catalyst- Full Movie

Alright, it's Saturday. This is what Maui is supposed to look like. So, plug in your head phones, pick a move to watch. The future looks good, just not the immediate one.
Report: Kona's light to none

Friday, January 8, 2010

The Elephant in the Room

Many kiters get to the beach, look out over the horizon, and see moderate conditions. What are moderate conditions? For Maui anything below 15, but most likely for everyone else, below 12. It is all about perspective. My personal theory is: you want to be the guy out there, instead of the guy talking about the guy "out there." My biggest mistake coming to this island was selling my 16m. I feel the chuckling over the web. But, the 16 is a very useful tool in the quiver. In the past, I mastered the 16, and now all that talent has gone to waste. Kiting on a 16 is like floating down a river, smooth and easy. The kite can be a little intimidating, the sheer volume and size. Steady as the moon, cruising down the street in a motorhome, you feel good, comfortable....relaxed. Just don't drop it on the biggest wave on the set, or the elephants will come running out of the circus tent.

Report: 10 to 14mph. Only the 16's with surfboards were invited to this party. The surf was a solid overhead, running DOH (double overhead) out the back. Forecast...light for a couple of days, then trades on Monday. Also, on Monday the return of Jaws for the fourth time. This one looks big, we'll see.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Great Wait

My Story is simple, I couldn't stand waiting. I moved to Maui. It's windy here, trust me. Today, I got to the beach early thinking it would be windy. I sat, watched the whales jump, the waves break, talked about the broken cars, looked for the wind and waited. The wind finally came, but not that much, not enough. Everything reminded me of how most kiters are...waiters. I laugh at yesterday's forecast looking positive in the future. The reality is, we live in the middle of the ocean so everything is imperfect. Luckily, things can change on a dime and spring is on the way. Soon, I will give the report from the beach. You just have to wait...just wait.

Shoot for Monday, are the trades going to fight back?

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Trade Winds

Yes...they are coming back! A day or two at most. Then maybe back again. Think of it like a car that has been sitting in the front yard for a while. There usually is a little trouble starting. Then it dies, then starts, then dies, then it goes. The car needs a little patience. These trades are tough, and they have been off for a long time. So, I have a feeling we are going to get some love.
Report:Thursday 15+ NE, Friday 10-15, Sat-Sun take a nap, Monday- this is where things are starting to take a U-turn. Surf 10+ all weekend, then on Monday another large NW 25+ My only suggestion is to bring all kites everyday and your surfboard. Good Luck!

Monday, January 4, 2010

North vs South : Maui Kitebeach Report

North vs South : Maui Kitebeach Report

North vs South

Report: The south side was blowing again, a small 12mph. The north side was blowing a large 18-26 out of the SW as the swell was starting to rock. Choose your weapon?
The trades are coming back for a short visit on Thursday and Friday. So I thought I would get us motivated with a movie. Usually, I like my original content, but this movie is pretty cool. Check out the Jesus walk about 4 minutes in. Then later, the strapless surfboard tricks...pretty cool. I suggest wearing some head phones, right click to full screen and get some motivation.

Addikt2 from smpl on Vimeo.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Mini Report Kihei

Today, another Kona day, so back to the southside. It was blowing around 18mph, side on steady as a rock. Predominately big kites were flown. As for tomorrow, another Kona day, ramping up just a little bit. The late afternoon produced some straight onshores, so I would shoot for the morning. The extended forecast looks like this: Monday stronger Konas, Tuesday Konas in the morning then going light. Wednesday, S.O.L. Then on Thursday, a Kona switch with some N to NE winds popping for a spell. Notice the hazy vog filming up the background of the picture.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Maui vs The Gorge

There is an ongoing argument between kiters from the Gorge, and kiters from the Gorge who come to Maui. I can't tell you how many times I've heard this. Most of the time I refrain,and have a good chuckle. The fact is I have never been, so I don't have a rebuttal. My only real response is: You are stating you case here, in Maui. Some day I will show up there and ride. Until then, it's winter, I wonder how good the wind is there?.brrrrr. This is a video from Windependent who taught at the Gorge this year. He is now a snowbird, kiting in La Ventana, staying out of the cold.

Friday, January 1, 2010

The Other Kitebeach

Living on an island is a great thing. It's got 360 degrees for swell and wind potential. New Years was great day, just not on the north side. When the Kona blows, the south side is where everyone goes. Kihei, a dry, dusty, sunny, town on the south side. Really, it reminds me of Huntington beach in California. Crowded with tourists, police action, dive bars and beautiful beaches, it is Kitebeach's cousin that also has world class wind with an occasional bump of swell. Keep an eye on that wind, Kihei can be good on trades, better on Kona's and best on North winds....
Hau'oli Makahiki Hou - Happy New Year!!!. The western Christmas and New Year fell during this same time of the year that the Hawaiians traditionally honored the earth for giving them plenty to eat. This period of resting and feasting was called Makahiki. I think the wind is resting too.