While walking along the beach recently, I saw some young surfers out on the lake being pulled along by giant kites
While walking along the beach recently, I saw some young surfers out on the lake being pulled along by giant kites. Please explain.—Jerry Moffat, Leslieville
It’s kiteboarding, a new, cutting-edge extreme sport (yes, another one) that, according to the Web site of Toronto company Kite Addict, combines “wakeboarding, surfing, jumping and flying.” Originating in France in the 1980s, the challenging sport first appeared here about four years ago. Today, locals skim across the waves off Cherry Beach and Ashbridge’s Bay whenever our fickle winds permit (late spring and summer are considered ideal), occasionally reaching speeds of 50 kilometres per hour. The new-generation kites are approximately 16 metres square, need less wind than a sailboard to function and are highly manoeuvrable. But harnessing yourself to an oversized kite on a blustery day can be fairly dangerous; lessons for beginners are considered a must.