Darren is hooked!
Understanding the wind window, learning to generate constant power, controlling apparent wind, getting use to the forces of the power zone… the constant tinkering of kiteboarding had Darren thinking about it since his lesson with SoCal Kiteboarding two weeks ago. Since kite skills are about 70% of kiteboarding, we decided to test out a trainer kite and learn to control the kite before taking any more lessons. Trainer kites cost very little compared to real riding gear and they are far more durable. With only one lesson under Darren’s belt, and a big fat zero for me, crashing the kite while learning is a pretty good possibility; making the durability a major selling point. The trainer kite is a lot smaller as well so it will generate less power and be much safer.
We picked up a Prism Snapshot 2.5 and it was a blast practicing our skills. The kite is excellent quality, like all Prism products, and it was easy to fly after only a few attempts. With a 2.5 sq m sail area and impressive pull, the Snapshot 2.5 packed a big punch. It was an ideal introduction to power kiting, with enough power to give our arms a good workout and test our balancing skills. We took it easy on the first flight and launched it gently; I didn’t want to do a wind-powered face plant in front of a field full of people. After a few short flights, we both managed to pull off a couple of figure-8 formations and keep the kite up in the air for a decent amount of time. The tight handling made it responsive and fast; even the slightest pull was noticeable in the air. It reminded me of trying to hover while piloting a helicopter – the Jedi touch is not one of my strong suits. With thorough instructions and visible markings directly on the kite, even the most inexperienced flyer could enjoy the Prism Snapshot on the first day.
The kite was ready to fly with Spectra™ dual-lines pre-attached, flight straps, winder, and tail. If we wanted the added control of four lines, the 2.5 converts instantly to a quad-liner by adding quad handles and one more set of flying lines. The compact pouch makes the kite fit just about anywhere and the quality ensures years of use.
The Snapshot 2.5 made wind junkies out of us on our first day. I’m certain we’ll be back out practicing again tomorrow.