Looking forward to… Kite Surfing…!

Posted: April 14, 2013 by Ben Weber in Kite, sports, Training
Tags: , , , , , ,

Kite surfers

Kite Surfing?

Yup! This will be our next main training project (while we keep up the cycling and the general fitness as well as our own individual challenges…) and one am particularly looking forward to as it will probably be the most fun. But why Kite Surfing? Will we going kite surfing during the actual expedition..?

A very simplified map of how the winds in Antarctica work - plenty out there more comprehensive than this! But basically, until the South Pole, we will be going into the wind, though after it, it will be in our favour...

A very simplified map of how the winds in Antarctica work – plenty out there more comprehensive than this! But basically, until the South Pole, we will be going into the wind, though after it, it will be in our favour…

Well when we are on Antarctica, when the winds are in our favour (mainly, most likely, when we leave the Pole towards McMurdo as the Katabatic winds blow off from the Antarctic plateau down and towards the coast) we will be going by kite-ski. This form of power helps… a lot – when skiing we will be going and hauling our 120kg pulks around 15km or so per day, if things are good. Kite-skiing will allow us to travel around ten times this speed, and so make it possible to cross the continent before the winter closes in.  When we are in northern Canada this coming February, we will be practicing kite ski, and we hope to embark on a smaller expedition of 600km across the Greenland Icecap from west-to-east next May; an expedition that will take a month or so, and which we will do plenty of kite-skiing.

Here in Brazil as you can imagine it is difficult to find places to ski… okay, not difficult: impossible. We would have to go to Bariloche in Argentina to be able to enjoy such opportunities. However, the principals behind kite surfing, in terms of using the wind and maintaining your balance, are similar to kite ski: using the wind is everything. They also say that kite-surfing is harder because it is harder to maintain your balance on water as opposed to snow and ice, which is what it would be like in the Antarctic. So the more practice we get with it better and will hopefully make our lives much easier when we are a) in the training at Baffin Island; b) the Greenland traverse and c) for the full expedition.

So yes, at the beginning of June, we will be going up to Fortaleza, with the glorious sunshine and waves of Fortaleza, to open a new chapter of our training for this whole project. Should be fun!

Kite surfing

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