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Snowkiting For Extreme Winter Thrill Seekers

          Snowkiting is the most recent craze in extreme sporting. Its simplistic nature coupled with its adrenaline-filled action, have been instrumental in occasioning its success as the future of extreme sports. It is rather surprising why no one had come up with this idea in the past. Snowkiting has become a craze in the contemporary sporting world. Snowkiting, which is a winter sport, has become a favorite for many who are into extreme sporting.

          The simplicity of the sports has ensured that kitting addicts can fuel their adrenaline thirst all year round. The conditions necessary for Snowkiting are snow and wind. Light to medium wind will suffice in creating ideal conditions for Snowkiting. The absence of the drag commonly generated by water during kitesurfing makes it plausible undertake Snowkiting during light winds.

Snowkiting copies from the tradition are Kitesurfing concepts. However, there are some slight differences. For one, in Snowkiting, light winds will suffice in enabling Snowkiting. On the other hand, kite surfing requires a significant degree of the wind to enabling surfing. The core rationale for this is that in Kitesurfing, water generates significant drag. In such situations, the wind is depended upon to work overtime to counter the effects of the drag. In Snowkiting, this is not the case.

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History

The sport of Snowkiting has its roots in the early 1960s. However, it was not until the year 1972 was real progress achieved. Wolf Beringer developed the Parawing system in the 1980s. The sport started to gain a massive following in the 2000s. Given the popularity of the sport in recent times, better and much safer equipment and safety practices have been designed. For this reason, kiters have been able to increase the speed at which they snowkite.

Equipment

In undertaking Snowkiting, one needs to have a snowboard and a snow kite. Aside from this, one will need to have a helmet, ice claws, appropriate skiing apparels, a harness and some protective pads. The goal is to ensure, simply, that the skier is well protected from the hazards that are inherent in the sports.

Factors to consider when selecting gear

Just like any other sports, the apparatus in use cannot be uniform for all riders. Different riders have different needs. Therefore, their gears cannot be all uniform. One of the most critical factors that need to be given consideration during the selection of gears is the rider’s weight. When selecting the kite to use, the weight of the rider needs to be given high regard. A wrong matching of the rider and kite will impede the ability to kite. Aside from the rider’s weight, the skills of the rider need to be factored into the equation. Novice riders should not use same kites as highly experienced riders. The speed of the wind also needs to be given high consideration. Additionally, the nature of the snow also serves to determine the nature of kite that is used. In deep snow, the kite that is used needs to be powerful. Such a requirement hinges on the need to counter, first, the drag associated with the snow. However, in icy terrain, the rider requires less power.

Best places to snowkite

In the U.S, some unique regions offer the best environment for Snowkiting. In Utah, there is Powder Mountain, in Montana there is Mt. Haggin whereas in New York, there is Chaumont Bay. Lake Champlain in Vermont and Minnesota also offer ideal places for Snowkiting. When outside of the U.S, excellent places to snow kite are Switzerland, France, and Iceland.

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Technique

The approach to Snowkiting is similar to both snowboarding and windsurfing. Maintaining balance will take some practice. However, depending on the nature of the kite that is used, the difficulties associated with maintaining balance can be mitigated. It needs to be noted that the snowboard needs to be designed specifically for Snowkiting. Such a requirement is hinged on the fact that other snowboards have undercuts which tend to make it harder for the rider to maintain balance. Therefore, kiters need to look for snowboards that have been specifically built for Snowkiting.

Terrain

Given the nature of the sport, Snowkiting can be practiced in a broad range of areas. The only requirement is the presence of snow and considerable wind. The wind should be of a level that enables the kite to gain speed. As long as the wind can offset the drag that may be present, the Snowkiting can be undertaken. Such minimum requirements for the sport have ensured that its popularity continues to grow.

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