THEKITEMAG ISSUE #22

Full to the brim as ever with tales from the adventure filled wonderland that is the global kiteboarding scene, TKM #22 delivers again. Captured in stunning detail for this issue we have the very best of the action from two very different world class events; the GKA Finals in Mauritius and the Kite Park World Tour Finals in Rhosneigr, along with in depth discussions with the minds behind Nobile, TEN, SU:2 and Lieuwe, a thorough examination of the brand new Eleveight FS and the TEN Pinna, the adventure behind the adventure movie Rugged from the Manera team, and much much more. I think the pictures in this issue just might be our best yet.

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ARCTIC EXPLOSION
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“When I came to Lofoten for the first time, it wasn’t a recognized mission for people to travel up north to kite. I remember some guys from Oslo asking me, “What are you doing up there? Why do you want to be up in the cold?” They sort of laughed at me. Now they are taking their holidays up north and it’s my time to smile and give them the thumbs up!”
For long time Arctic kiting proponent Kari Shibevaag, things changed this season. For the first time she found herself bumping into other kitesurfers traveling in the same direction. With adventure on everyone’s mind, the Arctic seems to have become as cool (pardon the pun) as the Caribbean. With landscapes like this, we can’t say we’re left wondering why.

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With new gear flying in from every direction, we thought we’d open up this section to cram in a little more on the 2018 collections from exciting brands old and new. Whether you’ve heard of them or not, each of these brands has years of skin in the game, so you can expect the new offerings from Nobile, TEN, SU:2 and Lieuwe to offer bags of performance, and you might be pleasantly surprised by the pricing from some of our relative newcomers

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KPL: THE RHOSSY PARK JAM
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Rhosneigr delivered great conditions throughout the week, we had wind every day of the competition! The spot provides everything from flat water lagoons to wave kickers. It was so cool to have riders from all over the world come over to Wales to compete in the final stop of the Kite Park League tour. It all came down to this final competition for the overall titles which meant we had 16 competitors, including some up and coming UK groms which was awesome to see.”

 

The KPL has delivered an outstanding tour again this year, with a consistent events calendar and tempting prize money ensuring the caliber of riders is as high as we’ve ever seen it. Rhosneigr in North Wales provides a suitably dramatic location for the final stop of the tour, and the wind this year allowed for a fierce competition

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THE BUBBLE MACHINE
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We’ve all learned so much working on this film together, it’s been a crazy experience and after all the ups and downs, the failed missions and endless amount of hours filming, I don’t think any of us would trade it for anything else. At this point we can only sit back and be proud of what we’ve created.”

Remember the last time you were flicking through Netflix and stumbled across a classic kite movie? Us neither. Despite the potential for epic storytelling, kitesurfing appears to have arrived at just the wrong time, falling prey instead to the click bait epidemic that promotes shallow content and caters to short attention spans only. The Bubble is an ambitious attempt to change this, and as it finally premieres internationally we caught up with the team making it happen

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PARK RATS
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That is something that I really love about the Kite Park League. We all put in a lot of effort to make the events happen and try and contribute what we can, not to mention everyone loves everyone and we are all good mates. I run the social media for the league but we all do small things here and there to make it happen.”

Until recently, the boots and obstacles movement has still felt relegated to the underground. Now, riding boots rarely raises any eyebrows, and we have a consistently impressive international competitive tour hosting some of the best riders in the world. After the epic final of the KPL we thought it an opportune time to interrogate some bona fide park rats, and get their opinion on the state of this side of the sport

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BEHIND THE CLIP: RUGGED POINT
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“There are no locals… Spring Island is uninhabited most of the year, some people come here to camp in July and August during kayaking expeditions, but most of the time it’s just wolves, eagles and sea otters enjoying the wildlife.
The nearest town is Kyuquot, a really small village on the Vancouver coast. It is what they call a “First Nation Indian Reserve” and is populated by native people. They were super nice and really curious to see a boat full of kiteboarding equipment. People go there by boat or seaplane, it’s hard to reach by car or truck.”
The Manera team regularly pump out content that demands a little more attention than most. Their latest adventure to Rugged Point, Nootka Island, is no different. We spoke to Julien Salles about why and how they make projects like this come to life.

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