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Separate launching area for Kites at Crissy?
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dvCali



Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 453

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 10:04 am    Post subject: Separate launching area for Kites at Crissy? Reply with quote

Yesterday I was sailing at Crissy and a minor accident happened with a Kite. I had come back to the beach and I was standing just a few yards from the water deciding if to go back in. This kiter comes in, lands in front of me and proceeds to get out, than it stumbles falls on the ground and starts to be dragged in my direction. Somebody downwind grabs his kite and as a result nothing happens, the guy stands up and passes between me and another windsurf left on the beach.

No big deal but ... all it would have taken was one of those nice Crissy gusts for the guy to be dragged and crash into me or the other windsurf or be dragged on the beach among the happy people sun tanning.

A separate launching area for Kites? Accidents happen (and quite frequently see this one in England http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-19420764), and I think everybody would be happier: the people on the beach, the windsurfers and the kiters.
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meyer



Joined: 14 Jun 2004
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 10:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also was sailing at chrissy on sunday afternoon and saw a kiter loose control of his kite on the beach. The loose kite almost hit several different people on the beach. If kiters or windsurfers are causing problems like this our access to launch could be taken away. Be careful with your gear!
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1956kiteboarder



Joined: 28 Dec 2007
Posts: 37

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 11:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello, I am a volunteer site steward with the San Francisco Board Sailing Association.

I have counseled hundreds of kite boarders on beach/water safety etiquette.

I have given out a kite safety guide to hundreds this summer at Crissy.

People do not like to be told and many locals have a lase-fair attitude, it would be helpful for people to communicate directly with the problem person and take some ownership of your sailing site.

Below is the SFBA hand out for Crissy.

Enjoying Crissy Field Kiteboarding


Welcome to Crissy Field. Thank you for familiarizing yourself with Crissy kiting protocol so we can all be safe and have a great time.

About Crissy
Crissy Field is a world-class sailing, windsurfing and kite surfing area for experienced riders. Gusty winds and strong currents can make kiting here challenging. The wind is side-offshore and the launch can be tricky, with winds often fluky/light on the inside.

Kiters should excel in upwind and jibing ability, be knowledgeable of ebb, flood and counter currents, and be strong swimmers. A full wetsuit year round is a must. Because the wind can be light on the beach but nuking on the outside, rig the right size kite for the outside.

Shared Beach
Beach Goers We share the beach with families, tourists and dog walkers. They always have the right of way. Please ensure you set up/launch away from the crowds and children.
Windsurfers Are well established at Crissy. Kiters generally launch upwind of the windsurfers and head toward the north tower.
Kites on the Beach Remember to put sand on your kite to avoid a runaway, and quickly roll up lines to avoid crossing someone else. Once launched move to the water quickly; please dont stand on the beach with your kite in the air.

While On the Bay
The Inside From Anita Rock to the beach. Its generally lighter in here and not great kiting unless its a strong NW day. You can usually swim in from here.
Anita to the Channel The span where the wind picks up and fills in. You are closer to the swimmable zone yet not in the channel.
Fort Point/South Tower The topography and the Fort there make for a wind shadow that moves around the tower base, which can drop your kite. Give the South Tower a wide berth.
Presidio Shoal On the inside upwind of Crissy. Holey and light, kites often drop here.
North Tower Smooth butter just outside.
Shipping Channel You probably want to spend the least time here.
Last Chance Beach Or the stairs before StFYC, is usually an easy shot if you miss Anita or even swim from inside Anita.



Commercial Ship Traffic
Please always give commercial traffic right of way. This means not crossing their bow. Rule 9 places the obligation on us, the small vessel operator, to avoid impeding the large vessel (http://www.uscg.mil/d11/vtssf/rule9.asp)
Allow more than enough time and space for a large vessel to see that you are moving out of their path. Make early and clear movements for them to note.
Monitor VHF Ch 14, which commercial vessels use to communicate with Vessel Traffic Service (VTS).

Self Rescue Tips
Use the buddy system and stay within in sight of the pack.
Know how to taco/self rescue; never jettison your gear and swim for it.
Always keep your kite inflated until you are rescued by a boat.
If the wind shifts offshore, flip your kite on its back and clip your leash to the pump attachment point, so you can swim parallel to the wind and current.
If you drop your kite inside Anita, swim for it.
If its light on the inside, take a few tacks out and recon the wind line to find a way back home.
On good days, coming in high (upwind of Anita) is fine, on most days ripping across the wind may be best, but sometimes going low is the only (and counter-intuitive) option.
If you miss last chance beach, stay out away from the piers down wind.
Fort Point (South Tower) is not a rescue option, unless youre familiar with it and its low tide with the small clearing visible between the rocks.

Coast Guard Etiquette
Consider carrying a VHF radio and a strobe light. Use 16 to report an incident to the Coast Guard.
Mark your gear with your name and phone number. If you lose anything, report it to the Coast Guard station (415) 331-8247 to avoid a search and rescue operation. We dont want the Coast Guard searching if you are safe. For Sector, which covers USCG emergencies area wide, call (415) 556-2103.

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victor



Joined: 03 Aug 1998
Posts: 558

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 11:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

last time i checked the kiters pretty much do have a separate area and there are self appointed "mayors" that do thier best to keep things safe and orderly.

there are, however, skill levels, tides, winds and other factors that might casue a kiter to not land at the appropriate spot. as is usually the case, someone knowledgeable was watching, grabbed the guy's kite and prevented a disaster.

i'm sure worse things have happened at crissy and it hasn't been shut down, yet. kites and sails are part of the world class scenery at crissy and no one wants to see either go away.
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churan



Joined: 05 Mar 2008
Posts: 42

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 11:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tough spot to allow for a kite only launch. It is better to launch at the western most part of the beach but in doing so makes the east beach down wind collateral. The east beach is in the wind shadow and the jetty is the only thing down wind. It would seem "team" awareness from kiters and sailors is the solution.
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rigatoni



Joined: 25 Feb 1999
Posts: 339

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 12:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Generally speaking, the kites launch at the western end of the beach and 95% of the time all is well. The problem is usually non-regulars showing up and either not having a clue or not giving a shit. The local kiters are just as annoyed with these idiots as the local windsurfers.

We all get along a lot better than we did a few years ago but these non-locals show up and really don't like being told what to do. Maybe we should not be so nice with them anymore.

One of them was out late throwing big air three feet from the launch to show off to his girlfriend or whatever. He was literally dangling between windsurfers launching and landing. We asked to do his dangling out in the middle and he just laughed. I had never seen the guy before.
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boggsman1



Joined: 24 Jun 2002
Posts: 3573
Location: at a computer

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 12:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How was Crissy yesterday?
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coyoteandre



Joined: 07 Mar 2009
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 1:26 pm    Post subject: Separate launching area for Kites at Crissy? Reply with quote

"Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong" or "If anything can go wrong, it will."

"My partner opened a kite school to go along with our windsurfing biz.
I was his only student. He was dragged ashore in a big gust and died shortly after.
We tossed all the kite gear out."

"The sport can have its ugly downside."

"As I hit the water my kite is about to crash cause of my sloppy one handed flying. So I pull the bar hard and I'm happy to see the kite go back up.

Then it comes back down. Then up. Did you ever notice that when you're in the water and you pull one end of the bar hard it can get hooked behind the depower rope and locked into loop mode? I notice.

My kite is locked in death spirals, spinning through the power zone as fast as it's little legs will take it, and I'm teabagging straight downwind through the high traffic area. I decide not to panic and to think carefully about my situation. I have my mouth open, like a humpback whale straining all the water in the bay. After careful consideration, I decide to close my mouth.

There is no way I can untangle my bar while I'm being jerked across the water like a marionette so I try to crash my kite to stop the loops. I take a minute to marvel at how special this moment is, to be trying to crash my kite, on purpose, and I can't. I enjoy the irony of my situation.

Then I discover that if I pull the bar hard enough, I can spin my kite down into the water. Yay, I've crashed my kite.
I have about 100 twists in my lines to unspin. I make the long body drag back to the beach."
Friday, August 17, 2012
IKooksurf
http://waterloggedbyscooper.blogspot.com/
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dvCali



Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 453

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 1:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

1956kiteboarder wrote:
Hello, I am a volunteer site steward with the San Francisco Board Sailing Association.

I have counseled hundreds of kite boarders on beach/water safety etiquette.

I have given out a kite safety guide to hundreds this summer at Crissy.

People do not like to be told and many locals have a lase-fair attitude, it would be helpful for people to communicate directly with the problem person and take some ownership of your sailing site.


Thank you 1956Kiteboarder, the efforts of the SFBSA are obviously very much appreciated.

However I think that the area from the "river" mouth to the end of the beach (where the wave breakers start) is just an accident waiting to happen. It is the area where most beach-goers spend their time, and where most windsurfers and kiters launch. The windsurfers clearly pose no problem, mostly because nobody swims in the area (if people did windsurfers would be a BIG problem), but the kiters could and to some extent do.

The potential for trouble is increasing, since for a while Kites attendance was down, but now with the the big course-racing Kite scene it is back up and on some days a large section of the beach is taken over.

So, I'll just repeat myself by saying that a separate launching area (west of the "river" mouth) would be to everybody's advantage, and especially be a good insurance against that one accident that hopefully will never happen but might bring a lot of access down (think of the lawsuit that a single passerby hit by a Kite can bring to the Park).

As for your suggestion, I do not think it is a matter of "taking ownership". My point is that even if Kiters aren't doing anything wrong accidents can and do happen. The Kiter I started this post with just tripped and stumbled, and with a bit more of bad luck he could have had an accident involving other people close by.


Last edited by dvCali on Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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rigatoni



Joined: 25 Feb 1999
Posts: 339

PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

coyoteandre-please keep the blanket disdain for all kitesurfers to yourself.

A.-Kitesurfing is not going away.
B.-The advancement in the safety of this gear has come a long way just in the last few years.
C.-Having more responsible and respectable people on the water is a net win for all of our safety. All of us water users need to watch each other's backs. There are a lot of examples of windsurfers helping kitesurfers get back to shore safely at Crissy but also examples of kitesurfers doing the same.

We share the water and beers afterwards. Coming down to the beach should not be an exercise in bitterness.
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