Sunday, December 03, 2006

The downwind mission

On thursday morning myself, instructor dave, big john, mitshibushi simon and his hot girlfriend isabella crammed into a simon's hired 4x4 and headed up the coast to find some new spots to kite at. We were limited with time and had just 4 days to make it 300km's North and kite at the best spots, so despite some full on missions to make it around rivers and over soft sands across big dunes and through deep water we had one hell of a good time!! First up we went to Paracuru. Its a busy location because the water is flat on the inside with waves on the outside plus there is a nice restaurant and a close by town that caters for kiters. It was too nice to resist despite how busy it was. As darkness fell we continued our drive and made it to fleixerus another hour or so further on.

Here the next morning there wasn't so much wind but there were some small but clean waves. However no wind is no wind so we continued on our way driving through some of what I consider ‘real’ Brazil where the roads were dirt tracks, electricity was a thing yet to be discovered, fresh water was pulled up from a well and animals were free to roam when not pulling old wood and other materials around.

The next location we named sticky point. We drove for miles along the beach looking for the spot that was just right and windy enough. We found somewhere that seemed really flat on the inside broken up by small and fun kickers that were broken up by intervals of a good a few seconds! Anyhow the tide was high and all was well in the world and we had a great blast on our big kites... unusual for the North as normally the wind is for small kites, but the weather was bit overcast and the wind was taking a well deserved chill out. That having been said it was still enough wind that was perfect for learning tricks. Mitshibushi Simon accomplished his mission of the trip which was to land a back loop after only having had his first kite lesson 12 days previous!!! Dave landed his first unhooked s bend to blind and big john was whooping put some fantastic gaileys (for those of you that aren't clued up about gaileys - they are what your first raileys wil be)!!!!!

So after a long day it was time to head off towards Jericocara. A big river mouth called Porto do Barcos looked awesome for kiting, but already too late in the day and with no pousadas nearby we made the decision to continue enroute to Jeri. Arriving here was something quite out of the ordinary. With only small undeveloped villages breaking up a route of zero civilisation stumbling upon a town in the middle of some dunes is completely insane. The nearest paved road was at least 10km’s away probably more!! The town looked like somewhere possibly found in the South of France. There were cafes, nice hotels, restaurants, shops, pousadas everywhere. Finding somewhere to stay was easy and first on the agenda was a trip to town for some food and a couple of caiprinhas and an early night… we certainly got a couple of those of those things, but it wasn’t the early night!!!!! Jeri was one big party! It seemed that we had arrived on the right day/night!!!

The following day despite lack of sleep started early at Prea! Prea is a beach South of Jeri. It’s a good beach but nothing special for kiting. The wind is strong and the sea state is pretty rough. It’s a great location with endless miles of sand and some nice kickers, but for developing your kiting its not the place. We had a great time however and rode the waves/swell on a downwind mission. I took out my 6m Naish Torch 3 for its debut appearance and fell in love. This kite is so stable and steady in the air that you wouldn’t think it such a small kite, but its turning speed was definitely fast, so smashing the lip was something that had to be done on a regular basis!!! The down winder was insane.

After this we headed just slightly North of Jeri and the boys did another downwinder. This time the wind was cross offshore, much stronger and the water was mirror flat. Not really what I have in mind for downwinders, so I drove in the 4x4 with Simon. Finding our way was certainly not as easy as following straight downwind and with a bit of bad planning we managed to make the boys think we had given up on them, but the tide was so high there was no way round to get them. A couple of hours later the tide had dropped back and after an hour of hammering through dunes and across some stretches of water that weren’t too deep we decided to head back to the beach.. The tide had dropped back enough and we were able to collect a couple of weary kiters! With a huge party the night before and a couple of big downwinders tired and weary we hit the bakery, ice cream parlour and cafes before returning to the hotel.

Now I am back at Sunset Beach Hotel in Cumbuco safe and sound. I’m just slightly smug having heard that there was now wind here for the passed three days, but Im a little disappointed that there wasn’t some more time to check out some more locations. However I’m back in my great room and the wind is back to normal outside! All is well in the world and its back to training tomorrow!!!!!

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