Forums > Kitesurfing Queensland

Relocating to Cairns - need gear advice & co

Reply
Created by Kit3kat 4 months ago, 9 Mar 2017
Kit3kat
92 posts
9 Mar 2017 4:29AM
Thumbs Up

oh yeah.

so I'll be coming to Cairns in 2-3 months. I'll be selling my equipment in the UK and will have to buy some new gear here.
In the UK you obviously need the unstoppable 7/9/12m combo for 80kg and kites with good depower.

1) What sort of kites do people fly there? Studying them windcharts it looks like there's never any wind so I assume most of the wind comes from the seabreeze? Looks a bit like a 10m/13m quiver is all you need?

2) What do you wear? Like in the UK I sometimes wear a 2mm shorty in summer when the water is warm - By warm I mean like 19?. 30? warm water is like... rediculous. How do you protect yourself from the sun? Do people kite with a 1 inch layer of suncream, boardshorts, rashguard and a hat?

3) I heard you can't do any watersport from November - March because there are jellyfish which kill you instantly when you touch them? Like seriously? There's animals which can kill you just by touching? Are there no calm bays or shallow waters or smth? Can't you wear a stinger suit and hope they won't sting you in your face?

4) Crocodiles? I remember there was something in the news just the other day about a british woman getting eaten by a crocodile while on holiday in Cairns.

5) Sharks? - I heard they don't actually like very warm water and stay away.

6) Waveriding/surfing possible? Looks like the great barrier rief would be getting in the way of any decent waves?

7) Best Beaches?

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
9 Mar 2017 11:04AM
Thumbs Up

Why are you coming to Cairns again?

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
9 Mar 2017 11:15AM
Thumbs Up

1) 12m minimum if you're around 80kg. A 15m would be ideal too as we get light winds most of the year under 25knots.

2 & 3) Between Nov and Mar (or May) - we wear stinger suits to protect us from jellys. No they don't kill you instantly, but the pain is so severe you would wish it would kill you immediately! Some, not all stingers. As warm or as clear the water you think it is, never go out without a stinger suit, including foot cover (that is the most common area for stings - the lower legs). Most sensible kiters use stinger lycra pants with booties and a rashie top. Both are made from lycra. Breathable and gives you sun protection as well. Sunscreen is a must for UK people especially. Don't worry about the face. Like I said, most stings (IF it happens - touch wood) will be on the lower part of your body.

4 & 5) Crocodiles & Sharks are the residents of the oceans here. We ignore them. They don't chase you, they don't jump out of the water and generally stay away due to the noise, kites in the air and so on. Just don't kite on open river mouths or creeks. Always ask the locals what the conditions are like BEFORE going near the water. Oh and we have far more sharks than crocs. The Bull and Tiger sharks are the most common. Again, most stay away and most places have drum-lines out to sea to catch them too. BUT never let your guard down.

6) Correct. Waves only generally happen during a cyclone season (Nov to Apr). We've not had a cyclone yet, but when they come, usually the day before the swells are like double-overhead. Again, ask locals where to go for waves. Islands are a good place to catch waves too.

7) In Cairns - Yorkeys Knob by far the safest and easiest place to kite. Then you have Port Douglas, and anywhere inbetween. I've kited most spots including Palm Cove. Trinity beach is rarely kited as it gets deep very quickly and there is a resident croc at the point towards palm cove. Again - best to talk to the locals. Try KiteRite at Yorkey's Knob. Chris there will be more than happy to help.

Enjoy!

theDoctor
NSW, 4170 posts
10 Mar 2017 9:41AM
Thumbs Up


Been here for like three days and have not seen even one can...

The name is very misleading

Kit3kat
92 posts
10 Mar 2017 7:22AM
Thumbs Up

thanks a lot for the info. I'm coming for work and because Cairns is sick. I used to live in Australia for about a year as a teenager and always wanted to go back. I don't like massive metropolitan supercity areas and wouldn't be keen to go in Melbourne or Sidney etc (not that I'd get a job there anyways). Also I wanted to go somewhere a bit warmer. Being from the UK I also like alcohol containing beverages and loud music. Oh and I need an airport close by. So that pretty much narrows Australia down to the Gold Coast, Cairns and maybe the sunshine coast. And I like to cycle. I also like spending time doing f*** all and do computer related things for a good time of the year so the North QLD summer is a perfect excuse to stay in and pretend you would like to go outside but can't.
Nothing to do with kiting really.

15m seems rather large. I thought when its sub 14knots people generally don't kite? If you never ever get more than 25 knots I would think about a 12m single quiver + perhaps add on a 7m or 8m wavekite for when it does blow and for when theres good waves? Doesn't really look like it's worth it, cyclones seem to happen only very rarely.

Is there any point riding freestyle kites as large windrange and quick depower doesn't really seem to be needed? What do people normally ride here?



PS: I can't let my guard down coz I don't have one. What do you guys use? Pistols? swords? knifes? spare kite wire to choke the shark to death? Pepperspray?

What about the chironex jellyfish? Wikipedia says it's pretty deadly?

Kit3kat
92 posts
10 Mar 2017 7:29AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
theDoctor said..

Been here for like three days and have not seen even one can...

The name is very misleading


how's the humidity treating you though?

theDoctor
NSW, 4170 posts
10 Mar 2017 11:40AM
Thumbs Up

It's like a little girlie gay version of the humidity in the nor west

Though, the weed is much better

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
10 Mar 2017 12:36PM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Kit3kat said..
I also like spending time doing f*** all and do computer related things for a good time of the year


Join the queue buddy!

LOL

That's why I moved up here too. I am in Townsville though. Any reason why not Townsville? Cairns rains too much mate. You'd only get 4 months of the year of kiting there, whereas we get around 10!

Kit3kat
92 posts
11 Mar 2017 6:03AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
NorthernKitesAUS said..

Kit3kat said..
I also like spending time doing f*** all and do computer related things for a good time of the year



Join the queue buddy!

LOL

That's why I moved up here too. I am in Townsville though. Any reason why not Townsville? Cairns rains too much mate. You'd only get 4 months of the year of kiting there, whereas we get around 10!


xD where did you move from?

I was thinking about Townsville but at the end of the day you gotta go where the jobs are for a foreigner. Also Townsville has no (int) airport and cairns has better partays. :P And better cycling.

The kiting didnt really come into the equation tbh.

UnderMyUmbrella
32 posts
11 Mar 2017 1:19PM
Thumbs Up

Most the kiters at Yorkey's are on 12 and 10m kites. I started on a 12 in my first season but destroyed it and now I'm on a 10m.

Last season was hit and miss but the one before that I was able to ride most weekends on the 12m. My biggest issue with the area is there's bugger all flat water. And no waves. Just mush.

But I still have fun and I'm looking forward to this season. Can always head a few hours up the coast to the Kite Surfarai area and better wind and flat(ter) water.

My mate surfs the reef on the odd occasion and it'd be amazing to kite it I reckon. Need to get out there one day!

Kit3kat
92 posts
11 Mar 2017 8:03PM
Thumbs Up

So you reckon 12m single kite quiver to start with for 80kg?What do you mean by buggarall flat water? Just really choppy water or proper shortwave kickers? I looked at some videos of the beaches around cairns and the water seems fairly flat. (certainly much flattee than what we get in the uk)

Whats the sea like out at the reef? Proper kiteSURF weather?

If you say the wind is ok for 12m most weekends, how do you judge that? I mean on the forecast it looks like theres no wind at all. Ever. Maybe the odd 12 knot day.

kiteboy dave
QLD, 6495 posts
12 Mar 2017 6:27AM
Thumbs Up

Irukandji syndrome is characterized by vomiting, headache, anxiety, cramping, and - most distinctively - a state that scientists have described as "a feeling of impending doom."

"Patients believe they're going to die and they're so certain of it that they'll actually beg their doctors to kill them just to get it over with," Australian biologist Lisa Gershwin told ABC radio in 2007. They won't die, as long as they get medical attention, but they will experience a cornucopia of other hellish sensations, as Gershwin explained:

It gives you incredible lower back pain that you would think of as similar to an electric drill drilling into your back. It gives you relentless nausea and vomiting. How does vomiting every minute to two minutes for up to 12 hours sound? Incredible. It gives waves of full body cramps, profuse sweating . the nurses have to wring out the bed sheets every 15 minutes. It gives you very great difficulty in breathing where you just feel like you can't catch your breath. It gives you this weird muscular restlessness so you can't stop moving but every time you move it hurts.

/sounds like fun

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
12 Mar 2017 7:00AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Kit3kat said..
So you reckon 12m single kite quiver to start with for 80kg?



Did you even read anything I originally said?

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
12 Mar 2017 7:04AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
kiteboy dave said..
Irukandji syndrome is characterized by vomiting, headache, anxiety, cramping, and - most distinctively - a state that scientists have described as "a feeling of impending doom."

"Patients believe they're going to die and they're so certain of it that they'll actually beg their doctors to kill them just to get it over with," Australian biologist Lisa Gershwin told ABC radio in 2007. They won't die, as long as they get medical attention, but they will experience a cornucopia of other hellish sensations, as Gershwin explained:

It gives you incredible lower back pain that you would think of as similar to an electric drill drilling into your back. It gives you relentless nausea and vomiting. How does vomiting every minute to two minutes for up to 12 hours sound? Incredible. It gives waves of full body cramps, profuse sweating . the nurses have to wring out the bed sheets every 15 minutes. It gives you very great difficulty in breathing where you just feel like you can't catch your breath. It gives you this weird muscular restlessness so you can't stop moving but every time you move it hurts.

/sounds like fun


Spot on Dave. That feeling of impending doom is the worst. I've seen gov videos on this and they really underestimate the reality of what some people go through after a Irukandji sting. A friend of mine is still recovering from it 3 years later! But it's affects are different to different people. Hence why a stinger suit is vital when kite surfing these waters

Kit3kat
92 posts
13 Mar 2017 6:37AM
Thumbs Up


well you said 12m minimum, better 14m. But then I have read conflicting reports here. i.e. some people saying there is consistent 15-25 knots during winter or as above that people at yorkies are all on 10m and 12ms.

Like a 14m would suggest that we are dealing with winds from 12 to 16ish knots most of the time. I personally don't really believe in anything above 13m. If it comes to that I'd get a lightwind kite rather than just "a bigger kite".

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
13 Mar 2017 2:12PM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Kit3kat said..

well you said 12m minimum, better 14m. But then I have read conflicting reports here. i.e. some people saying there is consistent 15-25 knots during winter or as above that people at yorkies are all on 10m and 12ms.

Like a 14m would suggest that we are dealing with winds from 12 to 16ish knots most of the time. I personally don't really believe in anything above 13m. If it comes to that I'd get a lightwind kite rather than just "a bigger kite".



Well there you go. This is foil country after all. There is a pecking order. Foil kiters go out the back and get what ever they want. Us twinnies have to content with shore breaks and shore winds. Mate get a 14m at least. THat's all I am saying. Otherwise you'll be swearing at the beach. I even use my Speed 15m kite in 20-25knots!

Kit3kat
92 posts
13 Mar 2017 8:35PM
Thumbs Up

i presume if you get 20knots it buttersmooth 20 knots? i.e. it actually blows just 20 and not like 15 - 30?

In the UK i would never use my 12m in 20 knots because you'll still get the odd 30 knot gust in between which just a bit too much. I mean windspeed measures speed not power anyways. In England on easterly wind (rather than our usual westerly wind on the southcoast) we actually generally subtract around 3 knots from wind readings as a westerly 12 knot is more like an easterly 15 knot. god knows why.... So at similar wind speeds the kite size required may actually change in different locations.


The Switch Nitro 6 14m is officially from 11 - 20 knots. I presume I get a bit more top end due to my higher weight. But if it does blow 15-25 knots usually in winter then it'd be very annoying as I would want to switch to a smaller kite then. If you say "well, deal with it, we usually have 10-20 knots and 15-20 knots alternating then I think I'd rather get a 15 or 16m dedicated lightwind kite and i.e. a 9m normal kite. That's sort of why I am debating. If you say you use your 14m from 10-25 knots and it only seldom ever blows more I'd rather get a single 14m like you suggest.

Gilly3
QLD, 604 posts
14 Mar 2017 6:21AM
Thumbs Up

I dunno, if it were me, I would wait till I arrived to decide what gear to buy instead of asking the interweb....

Pretty sure u would be able to demo in Cairns....u can buy kite gear here u know

My advice....buy shares in Banana Boat milky

Kit3kat
92 posts
14 Mar 2017 5:14AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Gilly3 said..
I dunno, if it were me, I would wait till I arrived to decide what gear to buy instead of asking the interweb....

Pretty sure u would be able to demo in Cairns....u can buy kite gear here u know

My advice....buy shares in Banana Boat milky



demoing wont help as the conditions are variable throughout the year and a single snapshot isnt enough to make that decision. I will not demo for 6 to 12 months to decide what ill buy when it will come down to what kiters there use anyways

Gateman
QLD, 170 posts
14 Mar 2017 9:22AM
Thumbs Up

Hey Kit3kat, haven't kited in Cairns but I'm in Sunny Coast, SE Qld, wind here is generally more like your easterly, lot less "power" in a 15knot warm Seabreeze than there is in a 15knot cold wind driven by a storm front. Something to do with air density and moisture content, plenty of explanations on here (most of them by Christian) and those posts are more likely found in sections to do with WA. In QLD most of our winds are "moderate" at best, I'm 62kg and use my 2017 9m switchblade most of the time on a TT, starts coming alive around 15 or 16knots so I recently added a 12m LF Solo for the lighter days.
Most of the time our gusts here are around 3-5knots above the average unless we're getting those storm driven squalls in which case it's a LOT less predictable and personally I find not much fun when you're struggling to keep your kite flying one minute and waaaay over powered the next.
Hope this helps.
PS: around here I see quite a few of the North Juice LW and Zephur when I'm on my Solo.

Kit3kat
92 posts
16 Mar 2017 4:16AM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Gateman said..
Hey Kit3kat, haven't kited in Cairns but I'm in Sunny Coast, SE Qld, wind here is generally more like your easterly, lot less "power" in a 15knot warm Seabreeze than there is in a 15knot cold wind driven by a storm front. Something to do with air density and moisture content, plenty of explanations on here (most of them by Christian) and those posts are more likely found in sections to do with WA. In QLD most of our winds are "moderate" at best, I'm 62kg and use my 2017 9m switchblade most of the time on a TT, starts coming alive around 15 or 16knots so I recently added a 12m LF Solo for the lighter days.
Most of the time our gusts here are around 3-5knots above the average unless we're getting those storm driven squalls in which case it's a LOT less predictable and personally I find not much fun when you're struggling to keep your kite flying one minute and waaaay over powered the next.
Hope this helps.
PS: around here I see quite a few of the North Juice LW and Zephur when I'm on my Solo.


hi, thanks! you are sort of talking about what concerns me. If the 12 knots aren't enough to carry a 9 meter then the rule of thumb is that those winds also won't carry a 14m kite of the same brand & type. Therefore the argument is to go up to a lightwind kite with i.e. less weight and less struts. Hence I was keen for some more feedback here whether it's not better to get i.e. a 15m lightwind kite rather than just any 14m kite.

Gateman
QLD, 170 posts
16 Mar 2017 10:51AM
Thumbs Up

Yeah, that was my issue, could generate enough power on 9m witchy by doing loops etc in 12 knots but you have to keep the kite moving at all times. The moment you tried to "park" the kite at 12 or body drag a bit downwind you loose line tension and kite falls out of the sky. I assumed a larger kite (same model) with the same weight to size ratio would have the same issues in very light wind. That is why I went for a more light wind specific kite as my larger kite. Still playing with the 12m Solo V3 and will post a review once I've had a decent opportunity to fly it a few times.

RosieKB
VIC, 221 posts
11 May 2017 7:41PM
Thumbs Up

Hi all - would you go the 14m 2012 or 11m 2015 Switchblade for Port Douglas in June?

Its a one kite holiday.


NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
17 May 2017 6:19AM
Thumbs Up

11m for sure. You can always hire gear from Windswell on the beach anyway

Windseeker
WA, 13 posts
17 May 2017 12:22PM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
NorthernKitesAUS said..


Kit3kat said..
I also like spending time doing f*** all and do computer related things for a good time of the year




Join the queue buddy!

LOL

That's why I moved up here too. I am in Townsville though. Any reason why not Townsville? Cairns rains too much mate. You'd only get 4 months of the year of kiting there, whereas we get around 10!



Hi NorthernKiteAUS,

I'm heading over to Townsville in early June for a couple of weeks to see family and friends. Should I bring over some kite gear for then??? And is Townsville better then Port Douglas for kiting. Was thinking maybe spending a week in PD as well as Townsville, I'm not sure which is better??? Hopefully you can point me in the right direction.

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 391 posts
18 May 2017 12:36PM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
Windseeker said..

Hi NorthernKiteAUS,

I'm heading over to Townsville in early June for a couple of weeks to see family and friends. Should I bring over some kite gear for then??? And is Townsville better then Port Douglas for kiting. Was thinking maybe spending a week in PD as well as Townsville, I'm not sure which is better??? Hopefully you can point me in the right direction.


Aloha!

The most popular spot is Pallarenda beach (Beach Access #14 - it's sign posted - can't miss it). Compared to PDs, I would say PD gets more consistant trade winds, but it's neither here or there. I like PDs only because WindSwell are right on the beach - if you need any repairs, or anything straight away - they are there. It's a bigger beach too and is great at low tide, for land kiting, which I also do. But Palla is great too. The wind is usually direct on-shore from the E to NE is best, and when it gets windy its choppy - okay if your experienced but if your learning its hard to get an edge upwind. Best times are at mid to low tides. High tide ok too, but better for experienced kiters, as landing a kite on a beach walker is frowned upon by the locals. Having said that, I have had some great sessions there. Rig up at the grassed area, walk to the beach, there's also a toilet block w showers and a tap next to the carpark (byo garden hose and nozzle).

There is a few rules to follow, as there is a sign post saying where to kite and not to kite, but more importantly MAKE SURE YOU KEEP OUT OF THE POWERLINES - Its a $7000 Ergon fine and a bad story in the paper! They are to the left of the car park. Stick to the right side.

Overall we've an awesome community in Townsville with kids kiting from 6yrs to an active 49 year old fella that is not only one of the keenest kiters in Australia but also one of the best kite repairers in the country. His name is Lofty

Give us a hoy when you get here or go and see Marvel Marvin at InTheLoop. He'll froth if you mention I sent you! ;)

Windseeker
WA, 13 posts
18 May 2017 5:46PM
Thumbs Up

Select to expand quote
NorthernKitesAUS said..

Windseeker said..

Hi NorthernKiteAUS,

I'm heading over to Townsville in early June for a couple of weeks to see family and friends. Should I bring over some kite gear for then??? And is Townsville better then Port Douglas for kiting. Was thinking maybe spending a week in PD as well as Townsville, I'm not sure which is better??? Hopefully you can point me in the right direction.



Aloha!

The most popular spot is Pallarenda beach (Beach Access #14 - it's sign posted - can't miss it). Compared to PDs, I would say PD gets more consistant trade winds, but it's neither here or there. I like PDs only because WindSwell are right on the beach - if you need any repairs, or anything straight away - they are there. It's a bigger beach too and is great at low tide, for land kiting, which I also do. But Palla is great too. The wind is usually direct on-shore from the E to NE is best, and when it gets windy its choppy - okay if your experienced but if your learning its hard to get an edge upwind. Best times are at mid to low tides. High tide ok too, but better for experienced kiters, as landing a kite on a beach walker is frowned upon by the locals. Having said that, I have had some great sessions there. Rig up at the grassed area, walk to the beach, there's also a toilet block w showers and a tap next to the carpark (byo garden hose and nozzle).

There is a few rules to follow, as there is a sign post saying where to kite and not to kite, but more importantly MAKE SURE YOU KEEP OUT OF THE POWERLINES - Its a $7000 Ergon fine and a bad story in the paper! They are to the left of the car park. Stick to the right side.

Overall we've an awesome community in Townsville with kids kiting from 6yrs to an active 49 year old fella that is not only one of the keenest kiters in Australia but also one of the best kite repairers in the country. His name is Lofty

Give us a hoy when you get here or go and see Marvel Marvin at InTheLoop. He'll froth if you mention I sent you! ;)


Thanks NorthernKiteAUS for the detailed kite info. Much appreciated.
I'll see you over there early June and I hope the wind gods come to the party.

PelicanPete
QLD, 58 posts
31 May 2017 10:46PM
Thumbs Up

Lived and kited in Cairns for about 5 years.
I'd wait till you get there to get your gear.
10 or 12 meter kites should be fine, but might depend on your level of expertise.
Good local kiters there when I was last there, and usually pretty friendly.
Tomatas Creek and Machans Beach have some great flat water, or used to.
Good downwinders at Port Douglas, and there other great places.
A trip to Cape Flattery is an experience.

Like I said, wait till you get there and beware of free advice on Forums, even if offered with the best of intentions.

w8ingforwind
152 posts
1 Jun 2017 6:04PM
Thumbs Up

Don't leave your kites in a hot car and get kites with welded valves.



Subscribe
Reply

Forums > Kitesurfing Queensland


"Relocating to Cairns - need gear advice & co" started by Kit3kat