Forums > Kitesurfing General

How to know, when to go

Created by FlyingDutchman 2 months ago, 23 Dec 2018
3 posts
23 Dec 2018 8:52AM
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Hi legends,

After having to unsuccessful days where I went out to Monterey beach in NSW, without being able to get out properly due to wind conditions.
Both times I went from 10am to 12pm. All the apps / sites predicted good weather, but on the beach, the wind was very inconsistent.
After I finally managed to self launch the kite a few times, it was hard to keep it in the air; it either dropped down cause wind stopped completely, or became tricky to fly due to a different direction of wind all of a sudden, and then I ended up steering it into a dead wind zone.

I'm new to the scene, and want to go out as much as possible. What are the best ways to recognize good conditions / bad conditions on the app and our on the beach.
In the case of this location, did I just go too early and does the wind not hit that early? Or is mornings not great regardless of locations?

Any tips and tricks would be very welcome.


WA, 429 posts
23 Dec 2018 9:28AM
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Don't go out on forecasts . Wait for three green arrows then go.

WA, 619 posts
23 Dec 2018 10:01AM
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If your new and inexperienced it's often a guessing game if the presented conditions will match the gear you propose to use, especially in marginal conditions.
For me predictions of what the wind should do in half an hour are largely ignored... it is what it is while your setting up. Apps are great as a guide but experience in judging conditions where and when you stand will always be more valuable.
Your recent difficulties are the stuff that provide the experience to make an informed judgment, so it's all good providing you learn from it. It's often very difficult to walk away sessionless
because the wind didn't get enough legs, especially when your new and frothing at every puff of wind.
In regard to the spot you kite the best thing is to talk to experienced locals to get knowledge about wind patterns at that location.

889 posts
23 Dec 2018 12:29PM
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+1 to the above

i see you're trying in botany, so consider whether you can always have packed some gear to do some other training like swim or sup on any days where you go down but wind doesn't get up - then it won't be such a waste. Confidently being able to swim a couple of kms in open water will hold you in good stead for the inevitable kitemare and swim in some day.

its easier if kiting an ocean side spot to just have a proper surf board in car and go for a paddle if the winds not up of course!!

NSW, 837 posts
23 Dec 2018 3:45PM
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Hi Joroen

Generally the sea breezes in Sydney don't come in until the afternoon even if the predictions say they start at noon
My advice is don't bother going to the beach before 2 pm when the Seabreeze has settled in for the day

WA, 328 posts
23 Dec 2018 1:00PM
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Select to expand quote
IanR said..
Hi Joroen

Generally the sea breezes in Sydney don't come in until the afternoon even if the predictions say they start at noon
My advice is don't bother going to the beach before 2 pm when the Seabreeze has settled in for the day

And wait for others to go out so you know what size kite they are going on and if they are doing ok.

alternatively, it may seem frustrating sometimes messing around with rubbish wind and kites falling out of the sky but in doing this, you're actually learning a lot about how your kite behaves in various winds so at least try to acknowledge you have learned something, even if it's how to crash your kite in light winds!!

WA, 9 posts
28 Dec 2018 1:51AM
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If you are a newbie then use a popular kiting spot. If you don't see a whole lot of kiters out then it is probably not good to go out.

WA, 255 posts
28 Dec 2018 1:01PM
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Learn the Beaufort scale. It's the best way and can do u better to just know and not rely on technology. When I see a seagull gliding with out moving it's wings over the dunes I know it's 9m weather ??

WA, 64 posts
28 Dec 2018 1:51PM
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Buy yourself a cheap anemometer/wind meter from ebay/jaycar.

Don't be too concerned about accuracy, it's more about consistency. Learn what the one you get reads compared to seabreeze/your favourite live wind app, and more importantly, which readings line up to being able to comfortably fly whichever size kites you have.

For instance, the first one I bought seemed to line up pretty well with seabreeze readings. I learned that as soon as it read a consistent 18knots, I was fine to put my 12 up. Anything over 22knots was 9m. Similarly, as soon as it was showing more than about 26-28knots, I needed to use my 6 and not my 9. When I was learning I would take a reading before each kite, and figure out at what points I became underpowered and overpowered/uncomfortable.

I bought a new one at the start of this summer as the old one was starting to play up after about 3yrs - new one reads about 4knots less than the old one, but it's consistent, so I've just learned to adjust to it.

Been kiting 5yrs and still use it when it's 25-30 knots to choose between 9m and 11m kites. Also helps to remove that "hope" factor on marginal wind days - if I don't see 18knots, no deal! ;)

NSW, 37 posts
29 Dec 2018 1:17PM
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Here are my thoughts on Botany Bay / Monteray.

In summer you are generally looking for seabreezes which are north easterly. They tend to come up in the afternoon as the inland warms up, as a general guideline the earlier it comes in the stronger it will be, although this can be effected by other factors.

Today for example is not a traditional seabreeze, the NE is being driven by the high pressure system in the Tasman with the seabreeze effect in the afternoon.

Other influencing factors include:

NE, NNE, ENE - slight variations in direction make a difference, more northerly it is the more likely it will be gusty, also it will funnel along the shore at Monteray a bit due to the trees / embankment / buildings. The average direction may show NE on Seabreeze however this can be just off NNE which makes a difference.

Easterly usually isn't as good at Monteray, you have the wind shadow effect from the short, it riskier as a beginner as your kite is more likely to crash into the beach / people.

Clouds building on the west moving in. This can impact the wind, sometimes it builds others it gets gustier or if the clouds come up from the SW it can get stronger.

Time of day. I have a general rule that around 5pm the wind usually shifts more northerly and becomes less stable. It can also get better and you can kite until dark. It sometimes drops for 10-30 minutes as it shifts as well.

Temperature I have no idea why, however if it gets above 30 the wind doesn't necessarily get better, doesn't mean don't go.

Just because Kernel goes green and builds doesn't mean Monteray will.

South easterly can be good as well although this is driven by fronts and can vary. This is usually more apparent in the cooler months so won't rabbit on about that here.

Also remember Seabreeze is a 10 min average with the max gust for that period. Therefore if the max gust is 5kn stronger then the min is likely to be 5 kn weaker, so less variation is better from a consistency point of view.

The advice above is all good,

If going to Botany Bay, use the airport forecast / measured as your guide.
Look what other people are using (not the learners / similar body weight)
Take something else to do and wait
It is a wind sport, just enjoy whatever you get

We live on the north side of sydney and use Seabreeze forecast as a guide as when to head to BBay. When then look at the airport readings on Seabreeze and kiters when we get there and finally when we get home, we copy the measured wind from Seabreeze, put it in a document and write what kite, size, what we did, what we thought. This helps with learning which kites to use for B Bay.

Hope this helps a bit.

4334 posts
30 Dec 2018 12:54AM
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Welcome to kiting!

It is a sport ruled by the weather. You have to go kiting when the condition s present themselves and not when you want to kite!

If you are not used to a sport like this it can be very frustrating.
You need to go when conditions are there or you will miss out. It helps if you have a flexible job that s allows for midweek kiting.

You will need to be patient and learn how to read and interpret the weather forecasts for your local. You will become an amateur meteorologist interpreting forecast data and apply your experience to it. Forecast website s to a good job at forecasting frontal driven wind conditions, they are less good at predicting seabreazes and how localised terrain effects the forecast. You will have to learn that over time. Eg for my local I know the sea brease hits harder at one particular beach. SW you can add 5-10 knots to the forecast, NW take 5-10 knots away.clouds can kill the seabreazes in minutes or stop it from occuring at all. Generally the best time of day to kite is 3-5. The seabreazes has kicked in and the wind is the most stable.

As a learner you will have a narrow range of conditions you will be able to fly in. Allow yourself 1 year to expand that range to a wider scope. Also you will discover your 1 kite and board combo will not be suitable for all conditions. In time should you break through the learning phase you will expand your wind/conditions range with more kites and boards.

I have a 4 kites a mutant tt, foil board, landboard and kite buggy. I can fly conditions from 5 knots to 50 knots land or sea. I can milk most conditions available.

Even then there are some conditions that aren't fun to kite. It also helps to have a non wind related sport to fall back on to when the wind doesn't play ball.

Plenty of kiters also sup and or surf. They take all the gear to the beach and use whatever is best for the conditions. Personally I go mountain biking when the wind doesn't play ball.

Ps if you can find a live weather station near by that will help a lot on the to whether the weather is playing ball.

NSW, 1114 posts
30 Dec 2018 9:25AM
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I remember those days,..
the beginning of my kiting days... I called it the desperados club!
sitting there for hours, then going home piss'd off... what's worse is my missus would be peeved too!
" How was your kite? Today" she'd say... and I'd respond with .. " no wind.. couldn't launch".
after a few of those conversations, it turned south fast.

just wait for good conditions mate, desperate ppl make huge mistakes.

NSW, 121 posts
30 Dec 2018 1:44PM
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Note that Kurnell tends to get more wind on a noreaster, so it can be worth the extra trip. Shallower water and less beachgoers too.Agree with the other poster that seabreezes usually kick in around 2pm.

QLD, 76 posts
12 Jan 2019 11:56AM
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get the windy ap on your phone .and dont go out under 15 knots


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"How to know, when to go" started by FlyingDutchman