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  #1  
Old 10-18-2008, 12:33 PM
PubUltraStar
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Default Badgers roadtrip to Florida Keys...

Greetings from Wisconsin:

We have a group of kiters coming down to the keys in early December. The tentative plans right now is to stay somewhere near Islamorada Key. 3 of the riders with us are experienced and can ride wherever. 2 of us are beginners on the water and have had lessons, but can snowkite. 2 will be absolute beginners. Can anyone recommend a good beach with shallow water to accomodate all of us? Are there beach fees? Is the ocean bottom sandy, or do we need to bring booties? Anyone have recommendations for evening activities? Some of us are SCUBA certified and would like recommendations for dive shops. Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

Mike.

Here's Lake Mendota in Madison:
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  #2  
Old 10-19-2008, 08:00 PM
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ricki ricki is offline
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Hello Mike,

For much of the Keys forget about the mainland concept of a sand beach. They do exist in the Keys, only rarely. In Islamorada there's Whale Harbor with a launching area and there is a fee to launch there. I think it's $10. It is a small place with no sand to speak of immediately adjacent to a parking lot. It does have a lot of flat shallow water however. Further south there is Anne's Beach still on Islamorada, again with no beach but lots of shallows. No fee to launch there currently. As I recall clear area to setup kites is pretty limited there. I would bring booties for the odd sea urchin or shell you might step on. The bottom is usually small areas of coarse sand and shell with most of the cover consisting of turtle grass.

I would suggest hitting Islamorada and running down the Keys to Key West for a trip to the flats with thekitehouse.com. You could stop by Bahia Honda State Park on the way north.

For diving I would suggest Atlantis Dive Shop in Key Largo. Been a long time since I have dove off Islamorada. There are dive charter operations throughout the Keys. I usually just go to Atlantis for diving when I'm down for that.

There are lots of night time options throughout the Keys. I think up a list and add it here soon.

Be sure to checkout the first two stickies at the following link for more ideas:
http://fksa.org/forumdisplay.php?f=89
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  #3  
Old 10-19-2008, 08:16 PM
noel noel is offline
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Pub,

If you want an actual beach then as Rick stated, go to Bahia Honda State Park. Park in the lot furthest to the east or left. (all beached in the keys face south) Then walk as far as you can to the left. Don't ride in front of the boardwalk. Plenty of room to set up and launch. The fee is only a couple of bucks and Bahia Honda was named 1 of the top 10 beaches in the US. Smathers Beach is another spot that is in Key West or check with the Kitehouse for a ride to the flats. Islamorada is pretty much the mecca for kiting in the keys. While passing thru, stop in and say hi at The Otherside Boardsports and/or Seven Sports in Islamorada.

Have fun and stay safe!!

Noel
www.othersideboardsports.com
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Old 10-19-2008, 09:01 PM
urjc22 urjc22 is offline
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Pub - shoot me an email and i can help you out. I have a condo down there and a pretty good idea of the area. I have been out with the guys in the kitehouse a bunch as well as above and below in marathon, a dive and kite shop.

Joe
jcatala1nd@yahoo.com
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  #5  
Old 10-23-2008, 10:51 AM
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yep, you guys have lots of options down here and should have a great time.

One more thing to consider is renting a boat for the crew and going out to the Islamorada Sandbar. Your experienced guys can rip, intermediates can walk it upwind and newbies can fly kites and bodydrag safely away from shore.

Happy to help out,
Brad
Seven
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www.sevensports.com
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  #6  
Old 12-05-2008, 11:00 AM
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Default Less than a week...

Thank you for everyone who responded to my questions. We are less than a week away from making our journey down to the Keys. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like there is much wind in the forecast. We'll have to find some other activities.

Mike.
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  #7  
Old 12-05-2008, 11:13 AM
noel noel is offline
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PUS,

You must see a different forecast than us here in the keys. Sunday - west 10-15 knots, Monday - east 15 knots, Tuesday - se 15-20 knots, Wednesday - se 20 knots, Thursday - west 20-25 knots. Looks good to me.

Also, I will be posting today about a North Kiteboarding Demo at Anne's Beach on Wednesday. Should be a great day. All are welcome and invited. We will probably have a barbecue at Anne's Beach through out the day also.

See you then and drive safe!

Noel
oTHErside Boardsports
mm 87.7
Islamorada, Florida Keys
www.othersideboardsports.com
(305)853-9728
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Old 12-05-2008, 11:25 AM
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Hey Mike,

You're welcome but I wouldn't sweat the wind. A week or more is too far off to predict with much certainty. For most of the State, wind comes with cold fronts. The Keys also benefits from other systems as well at times due to pressure gradient conditions across the area. So, you may well have wind. You should checkout the diving and other things down there as well.
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  #9  
Old 12-05-2008, 11:46 AM
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yeah, depending on how long you are here...you will get some wind...

and for those non-wind days, a couple other options: Islamorada Waverunner Tour - 2 hrs, 25 miles, lots of fun (and you can scope the whole area out), rent a boat for the crew and hit Cheeca Rocks an Hens and Chickens to snorkle, Wakeboarding, or rent some paddle boards, etc... you can do all that at Whale Harbor...but keep praying for wind!!!
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Seven Kiteboarding, Islamorada, Florida Keys
www.sevensports.com
305-853-KITE
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  #10  
Old 12-05-2008, 11:49 AM
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and you can go here:

http://www.wunderground.com/MAR/GM/052.html to check the forecast
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Seven Kiteboarding, Islamorada, Florida Keys
www.sevensports.com
305-853-KITE
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