Saturday, September 13, 2008

Prince Edward Island - Canada

Flying to Prince Edward Island for the 7th stop on the world tour proved more of a mission then perhaps it should have been. We originally had tickets with Zoom Airlines, but they were the most recent airline to go bust based on the rising fuel prices. This all happened while I was competing in Germany so I had 4 days to organise a new flight and that proved a little challenging. Anyhow a couple of days later all was good and I found a flight with air Canada that took us right to the island for a fairly cheap price.

(Just one beautiful kite spot)

Sometimes family are just vital and being well into the season and tired of travelling and competing for this year I asked my mum if she wanted to come. Prince Edward Island after all looked as though it had more to offer then a windy beach then most of the other competition spots, so in the end it wasn;t too difficult to persuade my mum to come so here we are now staying on a small farm just on the edge of the town Summerside.

Prince Edward Island is absolutely stunning. Its really quiet and despite being just a couply of hundred kilometres wide it has a coast line of 1,200km’s! The sea dips in and out of the island in 10’s or 100’s of inland seas and everywhere you drive you come across yet another perfect freestyle playground. There are more places to kite here then even nearly possibly and the locals say they have around 20 spots within half an hour drive. In the north there is a point where 2 currents meet and the water clashes up against each other when the sea is anything less then calm. This clash of water throws sand together and there is a sand spit at low tide that runs out to sea. I’m sure this would provide perfectly smooth flat water in most wind directions, but as yet no one has kited it and for no good reason!

(View from the beach)

The competition itself was held in two places. One on the north coast where the wind blew a solid 20 knots and one on the south coast where the wind was perfect for my 10m Naish. Both spots are shallow and flat water – at low tide perhaps a little too shallow but perfect from mid tide and up.

(Crack of dawn riders meetings - not even day light)

There is a wind energy farm here and so far the wind provides more then 5% of the islands electricity, but I’m sure this is set to increase as the technology develops and the money comes in.

The temperature is pretty cold and I didn’t bring enough jumpers, but the water itself is pretty warm. The first few days I was a 3/2mm NPX shorty which is fine while riding, but if you stand around on the shore you soon get cold. The locals tell me in the summer months then they don’t even need to wear a shorty, but they have been havng weather not dissimilar to us in the UK and so it hasn’t been as hot.

(Heat against Gizella Pulido. She killed me with two runs, so i busted some moves for the camera)

The competition has finished now and I finished in 4th place and today we have a best trick contest if the wind blows. I shall stay on the island with my mum for a few days after the contest to find out some more about the island because not only does this seem an idyllic place to kitesurf, but it is also an island full of history. Canada began in the capital of Prince Edward Island and that in itself makes me curious!

Right on, well over and out and will write soon! Look out for my travel article on this place. Its well worth the visit!

Photos by Mamma Wilson

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