Kite Surfing in Eastern Cape
Summer time in Eastern Cape- kitesurfing.
Living along the coast in the Eastern Cape one has to make the most of the weather that can to say the least be somewhat temperamental. Several coastal cities in South Africa proudly claim to be the "windiest city in South Africa". Having been fortunate enough to travel to several other coastal regions in the world it is obvious that unless you go to one of the so called tropical paradises the wind often blows. Surfing conditions are very dependant on just the right direction and strength of the wind. Given the right wind conditions surfers can look at the waves and say the surf is "cooking" and soon the local surfers will be having a ball.
But when the wrong and strong wind starts to blow up a storm it is the wind surfers who take to the waves. Here the wind is the friend and as the kite billows out and the kite surfer on his or her board hits the water and the fun begins.
If you visit the beach as a local or visitor there are obviously many options to choose from. You can laze in a deckchair, swim in the surf, cast a line into the water, hike along the coast, or if you are braver, more adventurous and fitter, you can try your hand at one of the more exciting activities such as paddling, surfing or kitesurfing.
To kite surf in the Eastern Cape the N/E Wind needs to be blowing at over 15 knots. As the wind picks up at about eleven in the morning the exponents of this sport start arriving. Unpacking their beautiful, colorful kites they pump air into the air pockets that support the kite. After connecting the long cords to the kite and to themselves they lift the kite into the wind. Stand on their boards in the shallows the kite and wind whip them away into the surf and out to sea.
The more skilled kite surfers do a variety of jumps and turns as they dangle like crazy puppets on a string. As the wind continues to blow harder the surf is filled with a colorful display of kites with each exponent racing this way and that to make the most of the wind and surf. It looks like great fun but like the hikers who stop to watch in amazement I can only dream of racing across the water and flying high in the sky like a bird.