While kiteskiing behind my trainer I really got hooked. So I decided to take this sport to the next level and get some real equipment. Unfortunately I didn’t have anyone in my area who kites. So I didn’t have anyone to bounce questions off of about what to buy. I scoured the web and called several dealers looking for answers. This might not be the best way to go about it but I bought my first kite based on advice from dealers and blog posts. From those sources I was able to narrow my choices down to a few options. From there I just looked for the best deal I could find. I ended up going back to the same guy I got my trainer from at Wind Power Sports. I bought a Best Kahoona 13.5. This was not an easy decision.
Picking a kite type:
My original reason for getting into this was to ski in the winter so a foil kite was my original plan. But my research on the web and talking to some dealers pointed me towards an inflatable. Even though I planned to use it mostly in the winter my research showed for a first kite it might be best to get something I could use all year round. This would help with the learning curve by getting used to just one kite. It seemed to make sense at the time. The arguments for greater depower with a LEI over a foil helped too. This means you can use an LEI in a greater wind range than you can of a foil of similar size. Having not used a big foil I can not say if this is true or not but I have to believe the so called experts. I wasn’t excited about blowing up a kite in zero degree or below weather but it isn’t really that bad. Some people blow up their struts at home so they don’t have to do it in the cold. In the end I think you have to decide what is best for you.
Choosing a kite size:
A lot of factors determine the best kite size. Your weight, height, season and the winds you expect to ride in will direct you here. I went with the 13.5 based on the manufacturer’s suggested wind range of 10-20 for the Best Kahoona. This seemed like a pretty reasonable range for my area. This is sold as a beginners kite with good depower and relaunch capabilities. Those were important factors to me. Derrick at Wind Power Sports recommended it with the idea that I would be able to grow into it but not out of it to soon. It was hard for me to imagine going from a three meter to a thirteen but he assured me it would be ok. I was thinking a seven or nine originally but am happy with the thirteen because the winds haven’t been as strong as I thought they would be. Keep in mind I live in one of the most consistently windy spots in the country. In the end it is a personal decision based on where you plan to ride, how you plan to ride and your size. No matter what you decide, just make a decision and get out there.