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ricki 07-21-2008 09:30 AM

Hurricanes have been a reality for a very long time. Some years are harder than others in this regard. Trials will come but it is how you deal with them and strive to recover which make the difference. In 2004 two hurricanes passed over almost the same section of Martin County, FL among many other areas. These hurricanes may have been the first to come this way in about 50 years. I visited Ft. Pierce, FL in the area a month after the second storm. Here is some of what I saw.
Kitesurfers and windsurfers go at it, seeking fun on the water. Nothing new there.
George, a Ft. Pierce regular shows off a vintage duct tape optimized directional and Wipika kite. You can see storm damaged buildings in the background and George like so many others carries on. That is what it is about.
Sunset is coming on
Lots of hard work and drive needed in the rebuilding. And, yet if you went there today you would likely find few signs of that time.
A new day

Photos by Rick Iossi


ricki 07-22-2008 11:30 AM

Heading up to the Outer Banks of North Carolina, a few years back in 2002. My timing has been off for kiting visits to OBX, usually for lighter winds. Still, it is an intriguing area with lots of sights and things to do.
A look at Waves, with waves no less. No Bahamas in the way gives you a LOT of fetch to build swells in. (CLICK PHOTO FOR FULL SIZED IMAGE)
The digs out on OBX, Barton's Hatteras Island Sail Shop, . He has a nice upstairs apartment. I understand this is a favorite starting/ending point for downwinders.
A PL kite goes up as the rain eases
Want to work on your suntan and do some flights off the sandy bunny slopes? Kitty Hawk Kites can take care of you. I felt real bad for the instructors out there in this intensely hot "mini Sahara." I am very grateful that all my early training flights were almost a 1000 ft. over Biscayne Bay with boat tow without a sand dune or sandy face plant in sight.
They have all these neat stilthouses along the shore. Hope the hurricanes have left them in place.

Photos by Rick Iossi


ricki 07-23-2008 10:02 PM

Ok, brace yourselves, the "Way Back Machine" is going way back, well sort of way back to the early 1960's. Found these on Ebay?!
I love this shot brings back memories. For one it is a photo of a Rebikoff Pegasus with full camera and instrument compliment. Dimitri Rebikoff was a French inventor of things UW for decades. He was also a pilot. He decided to combine flying with travel underwater and conceived the Pegasus. It was about an eight foot long torpedo like wetsub that you lay on top of. There was a rudder bar for your fins and a joy stick for controlling the aerilons with your hand. The pressure housed instrument pod had artificial horizon, altitude uh depth, compass and other stuff out of aircraft. Looks like he had this one rigged with a cine camera with two UW arch lamps.

You would fly this thing, do power dives, and boost ascents and could fly pretty level for photogrammetric and video surveys. I used to fly its cheaper cousin, the Remora. The main difference was instead of a $25,000 payload (in mid 1970's dollars!) of silver zinc batteries in the case of the Pegasus, the Remora towed a Whaler with a 220 v, 40 A diesel generator by a several hundred foot power umbilical. We used it for all sorts of surveys back in the day. Fun stuff. Oh, and there is mention of Columbus' "Pinta." There was another time we kicked around off Cap Haitian, Haiti looking for the sister ship, "Santa Maria" entombed in the barrier reef using diver operated drilling equipment.
I had never even heard of this publication before. Nice that somethings are before my time! Regarding, To Kill A Shark (in) The Mediterranean, I think you first have to find one? They do have tiburons but I think they are more elusive. Here's an interesting factoid from the past. In the Caribbean macho divers back in the day strove to get some black coral often at substantial depth, at least for the larger trees. This was before the practice was heavily banned for non-residents most everywhere. In the Med, macho divers used to collect Cat Shark Egg Sacks at depth? True enough, I once swapped some black coral for one of these funky translucent eggs with a guy from Germany when I was a young spud. Neat cover shot, all that fancy high tech stuff! Is that guy holding a classic RolleiMarin housing, Hans Hass' creation or is it a door opener?
Ugh, weeds! Wait, what am I complaining about I'm trying to breath on a double hosed regulator! Deep Dive, wonder what a "deep dive" was considered to be at that time? I recall seeing an amazing account over in Small Hope Bay, Andros last summer of a guy that did 462 ft. in 1962! His partner stayed down there unfortunately. This was on AIR and in the small tanks available at that time, probably "Rhinohydes" or converted CO2 bottles or something. I think in general though a "deep dive" back then was substantially shallower.
A final oldie goldie. I've yet to make it over to Greece but recall something about SCUBA diving being forbidden off the entire country without permit or special arrangements. I think this decision had to do with too many historical cultural resources being poached. Free divers can do a lot, no doubt particularly in Greece where the practice goes back mellinia. Still, if you want to dredge some exploratory holes to pillage a trireme wreck in 300 ft. of water you'll be pushing it on just a breath? So, shame on the dude making off with the amphora for the options he has removed from future divers. Most of the damage that will happen to a wreck occurs in the first hundred years as is collapsed, spread around, attacked by corrosion and eventually covered up. After that it remains in sort of a low oxygen or anaerobic stasis. That is until you pop the top on the entombed wreck, let all that oxygenated water in and things can be royally trashed in a decade or so. That is for all time and all future generations, not a good way to treat a non-renewable cultural resource. Beach Temptress Contest? Oh, got a shot of that too, interesting fashions back then.


KiteworldUSA 07-24-2008 10:15 PM


ricki 07-25-2008 10:03 AM

No end of marvelous places to check out in the Caribbean. Went through the Grenadines last summer, it's a great destination. They are so close together and yet fall within about a 60 mile stretch north to south. There are so many beaches, cays, reef lines, wrecks and more to explore. The best way to take in the islands is by liveaboard boat. We did it on Windjammer, fun operation but sadly they're no more.

I saw a lot of nice photos from the islands on the website of CARIBBEAN KITE SURFARIS, Some of the images follow, lots more where those came from in the Photo Gallery of the site. These folks do the Grenadines AND head south all the way to Trinidad/Tobago and across all those windy latitudes to Venezuela! There are lots of little explored islands and reefs in the ABC, Margarita latitudes. Would love the opportunity to check them out first person on a liveaboard someday.
Nothing like some quality island time with WIND!
You get this incredibly blue water in some of the island areas. White carbonate sand sets it off even more.
Endless island forms and coastlines to explore
You can also fall into some really good swells
I think I might have rigged and launched from this same small island in the Tobago Cays. Great times to be had down there, why not check it out?

Photos by Betty Findlay

ricki 07-29-2008 10:16 AM

The NPX guys got together and headed over to the Miami Marine Stadium for some wakeboarding. The Stadium was built way back in 1963 to host hydroplane races. It was visited by Nixon, Sammy Davis Jr., Jimmy Buffet and Mitch Miller in years past. You know who Mitch Miller is right?! One visitor, Andrew, in 1992 had a little too much fun and shut the stadium down. That doesn't mean you can't rip by on the water though as our boys did.
Andre Phillip throws one. Elliot Leboe did the filming and had the great idea to tow behind the boat in a small raft. That way he would next to and under the riders as they threw tricks. Great idea but I hope it was a kevlar raft with extra padding if they guys came too close.
Going off again!
Damien Lerroy rips along before what once was the largest cantilevered concrete roof span in the world. Uh, don't get too close there Damo.

and here's the video!

The wind was down for these days of shooting. Checkout that dramatic shelf cloud to the west over Miami during one day of the filming, intense stuff. So, don't have wind right now, here's an option.

A clearer version of the video along with a complete look at all that great clothing & waterwear appear on the NPX website HERE

Still photos by Tracy Kraft and video by Elliot Leboe of ACL Productions. Thanks to Josh with ASI for helping me out with all the great images.

Great job folks!


ricki 07-30-2008 10:37 AM
Cory Roeseler with the Kiteski Dusoski (combos) Photo: Marco van Es

Back in the Day, not just any old day either, The Day, there were innovators. Sort of like today only a bit different, as there was no great following, real direction or global impetus. They were the original elves cutting their own path in Santa's T&E toy shop at the North Pole or in this case, the Gorge.

So, let's pickup with Cory Roeseler and his concept (and that of his father William), Kiteski.

(Click thumbnails for full sized images)

Patent Abstract

A wind powered system utilizes a free-flying airfoil tethered to a conveyance device such as a water ski, a skegged hull slab or a wheeled land vehicle which either defines or inherently has tracking means defining a preferred traverse vector across an underlying surface. The tractive force of the airfoil is applied at the center of lateral resistance of the conveyance device such that there is no destabilizing moment caused by the airfoil, thereby removing an artificial limit on the sail area that is imposed upon fixed mast sailing craft. A control bar provides a mount for a tether reel which enables the conveyance device, when same is a kite, to be launched from the water without requiring the assistance of a boat.

Patent number: 5366182
Filing date: Nov 30, 1993
Issue date: Nov 22, 1994
Inventors: William G. Roeseler, Cory Roeseler
Primary Examiner: Anne E. Bidwell

You can read the rest of the patent at:

I remember seeing one of these in a Toyota Truck TV commercial in the early 1990's. I think Cory was booking along dead downwind in the shallows a few feet off the beach and free wheeling truck. He had this massive arch shaped bar in his hands. It was entirely crescent shaped and didn't resemble anything in this writeup, secret prototype, shhh.
Cory Roeseler in front loop, Photo: Michael Hildreth
Love that control bar! I took one of these out to my first trip to Maui (a loaner from F One USA's Raphael) along with Trip Forman's old 5 m Wipika two line kite. Hung Vu had come up with an inventive way to attach a kite leash to this thing (no depower, whoops). So I took the parts along to put one of those together too. Good news is the wind was so strong, the "kite bar built like a Schwin" stayed in my suitcase (along with the 5 m). Good thing, I would have felt terrible if the bar dragged by a runaway kite in 45 mph winds decapitate the top of Haleakala or something.
Richard Kummeth water starts Photo: Uta Kummeth
Water launching had a different meaning back then, remember NO emergency depowering! Hey, it just hit me, Nuclear Gorge winds and NO WAY to kill the power in an emergency!? YOW, there must have been some real interesting sessions back then. Came real close to buying one of these from Scott up in Valkerie, FL years back. Was already collecting way too much kite junk. I was on the search for the Holy Grail of Florida Summer Kiting gear, a light wind kite (which didn't exist, hadn't figured that out yet), so I passed.

Cory was and STILL is the man based upon recent speed kiting results. Have fun out there and thanks for all of those great sessions we have had in your wake. Anyone out there try a Kiteski before? How was it?
Cory Roeseler Photo: Michael Hildreth

Ride on


ricki 07-31-2008 10:02 AM

Back to Great Harbour Cay in the Berry Islands of the Bahamas with JP and Carlos ...
Looking north over the eastern shore of GHC towards Little Stirrup aka Cayo Dark Chocolate?
A typical chunk of Bahamian ironshore, nice to look at, fun to dive around, nasty for the odd kite landing, ouch!
What year is it, oh yeah, 2008!
A busy day at the launch
A white mini tsunami barrels into JP's Pond
The Pond from aloft
Feels like Miller Time, anybody got a Kaliber? Here's to fun times in the Islands!

You can see lots of photos from this day visit by private plane earlier in the year at:

Good winds and happy traveling!

Photos by Rick Iossi

conchxpress 07-31-2008 04:19 PM

Bahamas Fly-In
Rick. The pics are really inviting. Makes me want to be there, NOW!

We definitely have to organize a Harbour Cay fly-in, sometime in the fall, when the hurricane season is over. You must know a bunch of pilots that kite. I only know one other. We could hit a couple of other spots while we're there. Could be a long weekend, or longer.

Any pilots interested? Chime in with type of plane and how many kiters you could carry, with gear. I have a mooney, so with gear and full fuel, I could realistically only carry one other. Or..... maybe two really fit women.(kiting optional). Could I get an AMEN?


ricki 07-31-2008 10:53 PM

Sounds like a great idea to me Frank. I'll paste your post into the last Bahamas Fly-In thread and get this puppy cooking again. Can't wait!

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