Snow Kiting, A Green Sport | 02/25/2008, by powerkiteEveryone is talking about pollution and global warming these days. Well, a new sport called snowkiting provides an environmentally friendly alternative for recreation. Using wind as power, snowkiting athletes are pulled across snow covered landscapes at speeds of more than 60 miles per hour! The sports of kiting are growing rapidly as more and more people are discovering wind as a recreational resource.
Traditionally, a kite has one line and conditions to fly are best during the fall. Most people have probably flown a kite at some point during their childhood. Feeling the power and playing with the wind is an amazing feeling.
Snowkiting first started to develop about 15 years ago, both in the Europe and the US. With the serious consequences of being dragged by powerful wind, the new sport shifted focus towards kiting on water (kitesurfing/kiteboarding), where the landing was generally more forgiving. However, recent improvements in technology and safety have brought renewed excitement to the original idea of kiting in the mountains. Kites are getting bigger and are able to fly in less and less wind. New four line kites provide precise control and allow athletes to negotiate varied terrain and obstacles.
Kiting with skis or a snowboard, you can easily travel for miles through the white nature. All it takes is a little breeze to pull you nearly everywhere you would want to go. Gliding across fresh powder is noiseless and peaceful- you feel as though you’re one with nature. You and your kite might be the only colored point in the middle of a vast white area.
A modern kite for snowkiting has a flat area of about 75-120 sq feet and can easily lift you up in the air. It is truly awesome to ride downhill, steering the kite over our head, pulling the bar and gaining speed as you glide. Even on a flat ground you can use your kite to do huge jumps and catch serious hangtime (40+ feet for prolonged periods of time...).
People travel near and far for snowkiting in search of the perfect destination. The wind in the mountains can be gusty, but high plateaus usually offer clean, smooth winds. Frozen and snow covered lakes are perfect for this sport.
One of the most famous spots for snowkiting is Norway. The Hardangervidda plateau, known from the Star Wars Movie – The Empire strikes back, offers a 27 square mile playground for all kinds of riders. Just jump out of the car and start kiting into the wilderness. You’ll find flat and hilly areas as well as step gaps to get the big jumps.
Snowkiting is easy to learn, but it is recommended to take a lesson before doing it on your own. It is also important to choose the correct kite for the conditions and skills of the rider. If you are interested in learning how to snowkite, please take the time to research gear, access and safety considerations. Festivals are popping up all around the world providing rental equipment, instruction and lots of fun. There are also a few guiding companies that will, literally, show you the ropes. For more information, please contact email@example.com.
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