Cocoa Beach Kite Skating

Kiteskaters and Cruise Ships

In the early morning hours of Sunday, September 10, 2017 as Hurricane Irma approached the Florida Keys, I cannot sleep, worried about family members north of Miami and in Daytona Beach. To pass the time, I returned to the golden hours of March 4, 2017 evening.  On vacation, Pam and I walked Cocoa Beach starting from Lori Wilson Park, headed north.

The light was perfect when I decided to switch to Raw-Jpeg mode, feeling the extra space was worth it.  I don’t know why I don’t shoot Raw 100% of the time, as always, in retrospect, I regret using jpeg only. The camera was the Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a DT 18-200mm f3.5-6.3 lens purchased 2008 after an expedition to the Superstition Wilderness.

After capturing a wedding photo shoot and surfers there was this set of two Kite Skaters going at least 20 miles an hour. The Sony Alpha was quick enough to capture some of the action in raw mode, I am not satisfied with the sharpness of the images as the lens was not fast enough.

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Overview, Approaching Kite skater

We had never watched kite skaters before and were prepared to understand the vision from watching distant kite surfers out beyond the breakers. North winds are the best for any type of kiting on Cocoa Beach and, that day, the wind was northeast. These riders zipped by in less than a minute. The sport is low key, it does not exist on Wikipedia. Image that. These two are having a fantastic time and stayed upright, going on and on and on down the miles long beach.

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Sailskater Dreamview with Cruise Ship

1990 KiteSkate pioneers on the USA east coast experimented with four-line controllable parafoil kites powering in-line skates for exciting rides on asphalt surfaces.

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Her partner approaches

The name “Wheels of Doom” suggest the danger of going this fast over a hard, rough surface.

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He makes it look easy

These Cocoa Beach riders are outfitted for speed and safety: pads, helmets.

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He maneuvers kite overhead to slow down.

Barefeet?? Unprotected skin? They must know how to dress, though maybe not.  He has never fallen?

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Full speed ahead with the kite positioned forward.

The beach within the tide line is solid, the pebbles, broken shells and such unforgiving as asphalt.

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24 thoughts on “Cocoa Beach Kite Skating

  1. Some great shots there Michael! FYI – I always use JPEG. I know that all the experts use RAW, but I find that i’m able to create an image to my liking with my excellent editing software. Also RAW takes up a lot more memory.
    That being said though – I intend to start making some large prints and I’m sure that shooting in RAW will provide a better quality image. So when I’m going to start experimenting with some shots with JPEG/RAW combo.
    Also referring to my equipment – after much research I purchased a Panasonic Lumix G85 Mirrorless Camera and added a 28-280mm lens (35m equivalent) which I am very pleased with. I also have an excellent pocketable camera Canon G5X – really good for indoor and candid photography. Both cameras have a nice bright electronic viewfinders which is great for me wearing glasses. However, half of my shots are taken with my cell camera – jst upgraded to Samsung S7 – the latest shot was the White Moth – although I had to crop and sharpen it heavily.

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  2. Never seen this done with wheels. After tourists season we enjoy watching the kite boarders who use surf boards. The tourist/.little kids sometimes use those shore skimming boogie boards – which looks like an invitation for abrasions to us.
    Nice shots

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    1. In Cayuga Lake, summertimes, there are sailboarders. Sometimes when the southern end is frozen, late January into February there are ice sailors. It is fun to see the variations. The skaters on Cocoa Beach made it look fun and easy, we’ll leave it to the grand children to try out, if at all.

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