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Let’s go fly a kite

When you think of a kite, images of bright colored paper and childhood days of running on the beach might come to mind. Today, kites have become much more in the outdoor sporting world than just fabric, wood and ribbons—they can propel you through the sky.

Gliding across surfaces while surfing, snowboarding, skiing and skateboarding has become immensely popular over the last decade. Kitesurfing, which is done on any type of water board, allows the surfer to glide along waves by the pull of a kite. Harnessing the wind allows surfers to gain speed, distance and perform aerial tricks. Most notably, kitesurfers have set speed and distance world records, including a 3,500-mile transatlantic crossing.

Similarly, snowkiting or kiteboarding allows the user to drift across icy terrain and snow. Like kitesurfing, users can do aerial tricks and travel at blistering speeds. The most notable difference between snowkiting and other winter sports is that the user can travel up and down hill depending on wind directions.

Sound fun? Here’s where to start:

1. Pick your season

Determine what type of conditions you’d like to kite in. If you live in a drier climate with no bodies of water, landboarding is for you.

2. Get geared up

Snowkiting will place you in cold weather conditions. Wearing the proper apparel is important. Also, research the board and kite that’s necessary for your outing.

3. Learn to use the kite

Before jumping on board, make sure you know how to control your direction and speed with your kite. Safety first.

4. Practice

Learning the basics of how to snowboard, surf or skateboard will be necessary before you start your kiting journey.

So as the summer months come to a close, so too, do the scattered dashes of vibrant colors and floating ribbons on the coastal skylines. Yet that doesn’t have to be. Looking for a new hobby? Go fly a kite.

Photos by Mohammad Muha and Gus Schmiege