On The Beach Again

 

Things are changing here and for the better.  The past couple of weeks the weather has been so erratic.  One day the temperature is cool and the wind is from the north.  The next day it warms up and the wind is from the south but very strong.  Then there is rain and thunderstorms moving through.  Then back to chilly temperatures with north winds again.  The better thing is that I have gained access to the beach and have a place to fly kites.  I just have to wait for a day with moderate south winds.  You see, our beaches face the south and are lined with houses and condominiums.  Winds from the north are blocked and swirly.  Not the best for kite flying.

But the day finally came and I did something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time.  Put up a show of White Bird dragon kites.  They are some of the most beautiful round-headed dragon kites I’ve ever seen.  Unfortunately, they have been out of production for many years.  But I have made it a calling to find as many of their patterns as I can.  I have quite a collection and have always wanted to put them all up.  I could have done it this time but I settled for flying six at once.  And then just sitting in the sun, enjoying the weather, the sound of the waves and my kites.

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These past couple of weeks I’ve also gotten some work done on my Giant Hata kite build.  Finished all the pockets and sleeves and got the binding sewn all along the edge of the sail.

After framing and bridling, you truly realize how large this kite is.  It practically fills one wall of my living room.  Now to decide what kind of tails to make and it will be ready for a test fly.  Hopefully this weekend there will be a beautiful day with winds from the south and a chance to try it out.  And put another show of color in the sky above the beach.

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Special thanks to Don, Jeri and Brett of Kites Unlimited & Bird Stuff, etc.

Fair Winds All

 

 

Last Day For Driving

March 15 was the last day that we could drive on the beach.  So we made a point of going and flying a kite or two a couple of times during the before the end.  The winds had changed and come from the north.  Which meant they passed over and between the houses before getting to the beach.  Not the best wind for kite flying.  There was a weather front moving through too so it was partly cloudy to cloudy.  Not very pretty but still beach days.

Only flew a couple of kites, the Illustion Delta by Skydog and the Prism Flip kite.

Also flew a small, very old rokkaku that I received as a bag raffle item.  I was really surprised it flew at all.  The sail is printed on heavy ripstop-like material.  After flying it that one afternoon, I see some modifications that can be made so it will fly better and more stable.  I am adding it to my “to do” list.  Though at a low priority.

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Hate to admit but I forgot to put my camera in the truck and had to take photos with my phone.  I really dislike using my phone for photos and, as you can see, if the kite is moving around high in the sky the quality goes down.  Sorry.

The following day was sunny though the winds were no better.  I did get the Illustion delta kite up for a while.  And got a better photo of it.

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Because driving on the beach is no longer permitted, our flying location for the community kite fly will change next week.  It’s back to carrying our kite bags from the parking lot to the point at Fort Macon State Park.  Believe me, the number of kites I take along will be reduced and more selective.

Fair Winds All

 

 

Flying Days

So we’ve had two days in a row of kite flying. Can you believe it? One was the community kite fly day and the other was a day too beautiful to stay home.

The weekly community fly started out chilly. It never really warmed up much but was rather pleasant since the wind was low. No wind chill. Yes, the wind was low so it somewhat restricted what kites I flew. I pulled out two of my go-to light wind kites bag. The Skate by Into The Wind and the Dunton-Taylor Box. Both jumped around in the sky as the wind was coming out of the north and having to pass over and between the beach houses.   tried to fly my Emong, a glider kite by Flying Wings, but it preferred to glide back down rather than catch the wind and climb. 

It just felt so good to be back on the beach with kites in the air. A sure sign spring will arrive soon and we will be flying more often. And, believe it or not, the following day was even better.

The temperature jumped up at least ten degrees and the wind picked up and came off the ocean. The best kind of kite flying wind. We put off a few of the household chores and headed back to the beach. This time with the intention of flying some new acquisitions.

This was to be the inaugural flight of the cellular kite I built at the Maryland Kite Society Workshop. I named it Sunshine (for obvious reasons). And I wanted to fly the mermaid kite I made at the Keystone Kiter’s Workshop last year, the Tametomo. She hadn’t seen much air time.

During the Maryland workshop, we picked up some kites to add to our collection. And, of course, we had to put them up as soon as we possibly could. John got a square-headed Skydog dragon kite. It has the Skydog logo on it and matches his Skydog rokkaku kite. I got a Joel Schulz parrot kite by Go Fly A Kite. Both are in perfect condition. And both loved the wind and looked great.

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Here’s hoping for more perfect flying days to come.

Fair Winds All.

 

Still Waiting

Still waiting for some kite flying weather. Seems it is either warm with no wind or rainy and gusty. And when the weather does cooperate, I have something else that has to be done or somewhere else to be. The kite flying gods are against me.

So what does one do on a community kite fly day when there is no community kite fly? We hang out at the local kite shop, visit, see what new games and puzzles have arrived and play a little cribbage. Of course, I am the undisputed cribbage champion. But don’t tell Don at the kite shop that, he claims I cheat.

Since I’ve been unable to fly, I’ve been working on various art projects for exhibition in local galleries. I really stepped out of my comfort zone with the most recent work in mixed-media. Even there, kites are never far from my mind. One of my pieces is a miniature kite made of bamboo skewers and plastic, colored with alcohol inks. It is flying in a blue sky with puffy white clouds. One way or another, I have put “color in the sky”.

Fair Winds All