Today is officially the first day of summer and it sure feels like it in Florida. The afternoon seabreezes have been light so we wanted to see what type of lightwind kiteboarding we could do. We decided to take a trip down to the Skyway Bridge around 3pm.
We took a 2018 Cabrinha Contra 17m and the Cabrinha Double Agent Foilboard. We used the 60cm Trimlite bar with 2m extensions giving us 24m lines total.
Winds were ultra light out of the west at 7 mph. The tide was pretty stagnant so it didn’t play a role.
The winds were so light we didnt think that we would even be able to get riding.
We wouldn’t have even tried if the only board we had was a twintip. Since we wanted to experiment with how low of a wind speed we could kiteboard with a foil in we gave it a try. The 17m Contra stayed in the sky, which is fantastic to have an LEI fly in such light winds. To get going we had to make sure the kite passed straight through the power zone and the board angle was just right to get that initial pop off the water. Once you get up out of the water on a foilboard you can pump it and create much more power than you would with a twintip.
Riding was amazing. The water was so calm from the lack of wind that it felt like we were floating on a cloud. We were able to build momentum and speed with the Cabrinha Foil making it feel windier than it actually was. A few times we went for a tack and if we didn’t swing the kite around fast enough we had to loop it just to keep it in the sky. As long as we kept the kite moving, we were fine. A few times the kite almost hit water which would have for sure ended our session.
We forgot how light the winds were one we got moving. Foilboarding is such a cool sensation and to be able to do it in such light winds is crazy. This session gave us the confidence to just show up for an afternoon sea breeze and as long as we have a Contra and Cabrinha Foilboard, we know we’re riding. It really is a game changer.
Just being able to keep a kite in the sky in such light winds is technical. Though we can do it, doesn’t mean we would give a lesson in winds this light. Familiarity of the wind window is key in being able to utilize the full potential of the kite.
The Foil – The Cabrinha Foil is ideal because its a low aspect wing. What this means is that the wing is wider making it possible to stay foiling at lower speeds. In the early days of kite foiling, the wings had a much more narrow speed range. What’s awesome about the more recent low aspect wings is that even though they go slower, they can also maintain higher speeds before getting that shaky sensation.
Don’t go further than you can swim! If the kite touches the water and you’re in deep water, you’re probably not getting it back up.
If you’re learning how to foilboard, go out in more consistent winds. Right around 11mph, most kites will be able to proficiently fly. At 11mph I could go with a 12m kite and be able to foilboard.
Interested in this foil setup? Click Here
Have fun and enjoy foilboarding! If you want to learn how, shoot us a message.