Florida Keys Kiteboaring Trip
Florida Keys Kiteboarding Trip – Click here for previos article
We started out on the road early from Homestead Florida, which is where we stopped the previous evening. We woke up and immediately noticed the wind. This gave us the motivation to get focused enough to point the truck in the direction of the Florida Keys. The trees were moving and swaying to the beat of about 20kts. This can really get your blood pumping. We were heading to a place called Horseshoe; situated on the Gulf side of West Summerland Key. Interestingly enough, this place looks like a horseshoe from above. The reason we knew to go to this location was because of a friend of mine that lives in Key West. I met him a few years prior in Michigan, when I first ventured out into the commercial side of kiteboarding. Blake’s family was a great help in the early days of Blown Kiteboarding, so they hold a special place in my heart.
We arrived at Horseshoe around noon and went out to survey the spot. You walk down a path of hard bedrock through some mangrove type trees. Once you start to see the water, it jumps out at you because it is almost glowing. The color of the water looked like there was something radio active in it, so blue and vibrant. We walked to the north, and then headed out on a point. We noticed the set up area was slightly tricky. The knobby earth was the type of area that would snag lines and make it difficult to launch a kite. After taking in the area, we were convinced the beauty of the place far outweighed any challenge of setting up. We hustled back to the truck to grab our gear. As we started unpacking the truck, Blake pulled in with a few other people. It was going to be a good day!
We exchanged the normal pleasantries, but as all kiters know, there are no friends on a windy day. To help you better understand this sentiment, I will explain this a bit further. A kiteboarder understands that a bond of friendship is much stronger than a fleeting weather system, so we get at it first, then chat later. I would explain further, but something comes to mind about beating a dead horse (horseshoe). So anyway, we grabbed our gear, set up, and got out. Once I got away from land the beauty of the area pressed in around my senses, which nearly caused a system meltdown, but in a good way. I was happy to be partaking in this adventure. All of the people I was currently around were all people I knew because of kiteboarding. Some of them I hardly knew at all, but I knew we would automatically bond over this experience. After several hours of exhilaration, once we had exhausted all of the hoots, the hollers, and yells, we decided to come in for a break.
For break time, we ventured down the path to the parking lot and sat around our vehicles. Blake introduced Derek and I to Lorne, Alex, and Chris. We sat there with these people that we hardly knew; we chatted and laughed like we had been friends for ages. This is one of the most amazing aspects of kiteboarding, not the sport itself, but the people that are attracted to the sport. You all share in this thing, and those experiences immediately connect you to others, which make it easy to become fast friends. Not the type of friends that you know for a moment and are gone, but those that you keep in contact for a lifetime. We spent so much time laughing and joking around that the wind had all but vanished. We decided to pack up and head out for the day. We exchanged numbers with our new friends and headed off to meet another friend in Marathon. It felt good to be experiencing life in this way. This was only the start of our trip, but it was already a success.