Tour Sponsors:

NAST 2012 – Dillon, CO.


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Remi’s New Video

Remi’s new video. Shot in Wyoming, Idaho and Utah.


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Snowkite Masters

The Chase was on….

After an amazing time in Jackson, Wyoming the North American Snowkite Tour was on the move seeking wind and snow. We were faced with some tough decisions as the winter weather in North America has been a little under par this season. Conditions and snowpack were looking marginal for the week and amazing snow total reports for Idaho were haunting us in our decision to move south. In a last minute decision we moved on to Idaho.
Hours into our trip we were into some great conditions. Kiters raced out into the rolling hills of Idaho in 11m wind and smooth fresh snow. Many high speed runs were made reaching top speeds of over 60 mph. As the session progressed riders moved into some fun cornice areas for some freestyle.
The Chase continued throughout the week but Mother Nature failed to deliver. Wherever there was snow there wasn’t wind, and wherever there was wind there wasn’t  snow. The athletes of the Tour made due with many practical jokes, goofy antics, and building kickers off houses. Whether there is wind or not the show goes on…
Awaking Friday morning we all got the break we were looking for. Bluebird Skyline blowing 15 out of the SouthEast. The 2012 Snowkite Masters was underway. Kiters from all over the country had flocked to the most famed snowkite location in North America to partake in the action. For the next 3 days kiters played throughout the amazing Skyline playground, jumping off cornices, gliding off hills, and getting some great powder turns. It was a festival and a celebration of our sport. Much thanks to Brian and Heather of Windzup snowkiting, putting on a great event and entertaining all kiters throughout the evening at the Triangle Bar. With a great week of kiting, filming, and socializing, the North American Snowkite Tour was on the move to Summit County Colorado.

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Hang around the riders of the North American Snowkite Tour and you’ll quickly learn that every snowkiter is searching for a “sickbird.”  A day where the sky’s are blue (aka- a bluebird day) and the conditions are sick (aka- powder and steady winds all day).  This is exactly what happened in the back country of Bonderant, WY.  A little town just outside of Jackson Hole with a population of 100, although even that seems to be stretching it some.  Small town or not, the goods got delivered on Friday, with deep powder and steady winds and it was hard to find anyone who wasn’t absolutely killing it.  Saturday was just as sick, but with drifting clouds allowing the sun to poke through most of the day, and it does not get the coveted title of being a “sickbird.”  Brad Gordon said it best, when commenting later, “this is one of maybe only twelve days a year, when all the conditions line up perfectly enough to be called a “sickbird” and it’s what a snowkiter chases every season.”  I think a surfer would call it the “perfect wave” day and from my vantage point behind the camera, these guys were flat out “smacking the lip”, if you get my drift.

Speaking of drifts, there were plenty of them.  Snowdrifts that is, and this pumped up crew was only too happy to shred them all!  My favorite moment of the day was watching Luke Orton, blow up the powder on a cornice like it was the 4th of July.  He wasn’t the only one either.  I could name kiter after kiter that laid it down with fresh tracks, pulling the trigger on power loops, and pushing each other to give even more.   I am so stoked that we are this early in the season and these guys are already setting such an aggressive pace.

Sunset on Saturday marked the end of this stop on the tour for both the snowkiters and the media team alike.  Cinematographer, Bryant Swanstrom and photographer, Sean Naugle  from Black Owl Media, were a pleasure for me to work with for our first time together and I look forward to continuing to film with these guys all season.   They not only put it out huge for these riders during production to capture the action but their tireless attention to detail in post are giving  this year’s media coverage a much needed    shot in the arm and leg and neck and,…. well you get the idea.  Look for Bryant to release a piece of the action later this week, but I must warn you.  If you’re not already on the tour with us this year, you may soon have to be.  Truly a lifestyle worth living as you will soon see.

The event ended Saturday night with everyone enjoying a little of that lifestyle in downtown Jackson Hole.  Beer, pizza, and a few laughs seem to have been a perfect ending to the week before moving on to the next leg of the tour.  Although, officially everyone is headed to Skyline, Utah for the next stop, don’t be surprised if you see these guys making tracks along the way.   I’ve heard talk in the wind of a day or two in Idaho.  Even on a scheduled day off, many kiters heading north of Jackson Hole today to enjoy a sunset session before heading out tomorrow.   No rest for the wicked.

Stuart Penny

Check out Sean’s pictures at the bottom of the page HERE


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Today was the last day of the Southwest Snowkite Festival at Eagle’s Nest Lake, NM and we couldn’t be more pleased with the way things went. The wind was up every day, the music was bumping, burgers were grilling, and a record number of beginner and advanced kiters were out on the lake having a blast.

Friday opened a little cloudy but the day soon cleared and the wind picked up. Dave cooked burgers and the 10 or so kiters that showed up chowed down before heading out. The snow on the lake was a little thin but everyone had a great time. While intermediate plus kiters ripped up and down the lake on skis and snowboards, a small group of beginners learned to kite on the beach.

On Saturday morning we arrived to a dusting of fresh snow and a brilliant sunny day. Our expectations for turnout were low, so Stuart and I were thrilled to see the parking area fill up and the kiters flood in to the registration booth. The wind was slow to build so I took a group of 15 or more people out to the lake to demonstrate the basics of choosing a safe landing/launching/flying area, how to inflate and rig an LEI kite, how to launch and some wind theory. The group included some great students including the mayor of Albuquerque and his family. As the day progressed the wind built and a new Eagle’s Nest Lake record was set––17 kites flying on the lake at one time. As the sun set, an amazing steady 17 knot wind came up and a few of us got out for a sunset session.

Today we had another glorious sunny day with some solid wind in the afternoon. While John and Stewart taught some beginner classes and a handful of kiters hit the lake, I grabbed an Ozone foil and cruised the hills then tore across the frozen lake. I had been dreaming of a buggy session all weekend and it turned out to be everything I hoped it would be. Free, John and Françoise had an amazing time traversing the entire lake looking for some deeper snow. Our volunteer paramedics followed them down the lake on the wheeler. The sight of their bright kites rising and dipping over the steely blue ice with the peaks in the background was really something.

As the sun set, we headed over to the Lucky Shoe Saloon to catch the end of the Super Bowl and watch Th Damn Band play just for us. What an amazing group!

We’re sunburned and our throats hurt from talking but we’re OK with it because we know we grew the sport in the Southwest. It looks like about 70 people showed up from near and far to see what snowkiting is all about and we were privledged to be able to show them.

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GET YOUR SW SNOWKITE FEST SHIRT NOW

We have a few 2012 Southwest Kite festival shirts left so order one now if you missed your chance at the event. Or, if you didn’t make it to the event and want to express your solidarity with the Southwest Kite community nonetheless, pick one up now, you won’t regret

$25 + $5 shipping

____________________________________________________________________

 


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Hang around the riders of the North American Snowkite Tour and you’ll quickly learn that every snowkiter is searching for a “sickbird.”  A day where the sky’s are blue (aka- a bluebird day) and the conditions are sick (aka- powder and steady winds all day).  This is exactly what happened in the back country of Bonderant, WY.  A little town just outside of Jackson Hole with a population of 100, although even that seems to be stretching it some.  Small town or not, the goods got delivered on Friday, with deep powder and steady winds and it was hard to find anyone who wasn’t absolutely killing it.  Saturday was just as sick, but with drifting clouds allowing the sun to poke through most of the day, and it does not get the coveted title of being a “sickbird.”  Brad Gordon said it best, when commenting later, “this is one of maybe only twelve days a year, when all the conditions line up perfectly enough to be called a “sickbird” and it’s what a snowkiter chases every season.”  I think a surfer would call it the “perfect wave” day and from my vantage point behind the camera, these guys were flat out “smacking the lip”, if you get my drift.

Speaking of drifts, there were plenty of them.  Snowdrifts that is, and this pumped up crew was only too happy to shred them all!  My favorite moment of the day was watching Luke Orton, blow up the powder on a cornice like it was the 4th of July.  He wasn’t the only one either.  I could name kiter after kiter that laid it down with fresh tracks, pulling the trigger on power loops, and pushing each other to give even more.   I am so stoked that we are this early in the season and these guys are already setting such an aggressive pace.

Sunset on Saturday marked the end of this stop on the tour for both the snowkiters and the media team alike.  Cinematographer, Bryant Swanstrom and photographer, Sean Naugle  from Black Owl Media, were a pleasure for me to work with for our first time together and I look forward to continuing to film with these guys all season.   They not only put it out huge for these riders during production to capture the action but their tireless attention to detail in post are giving  this year’s media coverage a much needed    shot in the arm and leg and neck and,…. well you get the idea.  Look for Bryant to release a piece of the action later this week, but I must warn you.  If you’re not already on the tour with us this year, you may soon have to be.  Truly a lifestyle worth living as you will soon see.

The event ended Saturday night with everyone enjoying a little of that lifestyle in downtown Jackson Hole.  Beer, pizza, and a few laughs seem to have been a perfect ending to the week before moving on to the next leg of the tour.  Although, officially everyone is headed to Skyline, Utah for the next stop, don’t be surprised if you see these guys making tracks along the way.   I’ve heard talk in the wind of a day or two in Idaho.  Even on a scheduled day off, many kiters heading north of Jackson Hole today to enjoy a sunset session before heading out tomorrow.   No rest for the wicked.

Stuart Penny

Check out Sean’s pictures at the bottom of the page HERE


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Our weather forecast is from WP Wunderground