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Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 10:17 pm
by skysurfr
Today, Sunday the 30th of July, I received a phone call from the Lifeguards at Montrose. They were reporting an unsafe and uncertified kiteboarder. As is our plan, that person was asked to leave.

So lets call this Strike one. If the Lifeguards have to get involved in our business, then we have failed to self-police.

I haven't gotten a full report, but know that our guys did help the guards and did educate the kiteboarder on what was expected at Montrose.

We need to stop uncertified riders before they get on the water.

No streamer, no certification , no kiteboarding at Montrose.

The Guards have been asked to aggressively enforce this policy. We are in our most crowded and busy season, on a beach that is now shared by more users than ever.

Thank you to those who helped out at the beach today.... you have helped keep it open and safe!


Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 10:52 am
by snowball
I saw some idiots kite go out of control at zion yesterday do 3 kiteloops and crash legit 5 feet from a little kid whos parents started screaming. I just ran over pulled the guys release and told him to go f*ck himself and take lessons and told him to leave.

Kiteboarding is a dangerous sport. Whether they take lessons from myself or my competition. Lessons are mandatory when other peoples safety is at stake/the loss of a beach. If a lesson was taken he would have known that you push out/let go of bar not pull in when kite is out of control. Safety first as mike always says :)

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 11:15 am
by jkjaeschke
Maybe you shouldn't distract the person teaching.

I've saved your students before and didn't feel the need to blow your shit up. Watch who your calling an idiot.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 11:27 am
by snowball
If someone throw a knife at your child would you be cool with it? A fully powered kite is exactly the same thing. You are lucky they did not call the police on you.

You are an idiot to let someone fly your 9 meter kite in 25 mph into a innocent child !!! When innocent children are involved I will not back down on that statement one bit. Not OK at all.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:11 pm
by dbur
that scene did look ugly at Zion yesterday.... couldn't see all the details since I was 200 yrds upwind but seemed like classic faceplant with kite looping totally out of control (more than 3 times)... and yes it appeared they were quite a few beach goers in that area

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:22 pm
by Eric A.
Reading this kind of stuff just makes me cringe.
It only takes one person to blow it for many.
Pretty bad judgment call to say the least.

Again complacency seems to be the new normal....oh nothing will happen it's all good bro. I'm an instructor...I got this!

Chicago is going for the shutdown this season from what I have been reading....tighten it up folks.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 12:28 pm
by snowball
Looking back my response was unprofessional...

I do apologize for calling you an idiot. It is just that it very very much angers me to see a kiter almost hurt innocent children and beach goers on a crowded day. If that kite had cut a child and the parants decided to sue or call police the sport could be banned at both zion and waukegan beach. Which would ruin it for everyone.

Stay safe.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 1:36 pm
by FullThrottle49
I had a similar situation, the other week, guy downed a kite over a family, i was already pissed cause he almost hit me earlier, i grabbed his kite deflated it and told him to leave(have feeling we are talking about the same people). ive see a couple guys who are at waukegan a lot that cant stay up wind and are constantly downing there kites on beach unassisted,People who cant stay upwind should not be on a beach with people!!Dont be afraid to let people know they are putting others lives at risk!! You cant expect non kiters to stay out of your way and know the dangers of the giant kite flying at them.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 4:47 pm
by jkjaeschke
Thanks for the response Snowball. I do appreciate your passion for safety and trying to help out the situation. I over estimated his ability at that point and we made some adjustments after that. Let's not run out a make accusations like I was throwing knives at kids and I certainly didn't see one almost get hit by a kite. In the end we are all out there and should be ready to help anyone behind a kite no matter their level and learn from each other. I fully agree with the statement that part of that is reminding people.

I think a pretty solid rule of thumb for Zion is that for beginners, maybe even all riders, should launch and ride south of the hotel. Proactively making a change like this will ultimately result in a better longer lasting relationship for kiters and beach goers there. I've also see a newbie(or I think he was) a few years back end up in those rocks outside the hotel and get taken away in an ambulance.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 11:58 pm
by skysurfr
It's funny to watch the Montrose follies until it starts happening at your beach.

Happy to see you guys working it out amongst yourselves.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 12:54 pm
by WaWaZat
Man, I hate to see reports of irresponsible kiting at any beach but it just makes my heart sink to read a topic like Montrose Beach- Strike....1... especially when I was there that day and other than 1 misguided apple, most everyone else... at least a dozen or more... were on their absolute best behavior, coexisting with the wide variety of crowd typical on an average summer day at our large city beach. Sorry Mike... the call you received was my fault.

When I 1st saw the husband and wife arrive with Sunday afternoon at the beach gear, an SUP, a kite harness and setting up camp near our launch area... the fact I did not recognize either as kiters prompted me to walk over and say hi. Turns out the kiter... damn me for not having the courtesy to even remember his name... knew who I was from previous kiting. After I saw his steel blue 12M, I recognized the kite. We walked and talked and I asked if he had a streamer... "No"... and then a cert... another "No". I politely explained our system and how to acquire a streamer. He said he was familiar with the system. I nicely suggested he not put up his kite, especially on a busy day like it was and let him know the guards have been cracking down lately and checking for steamers and cards. He replied that he has been kiting there since 2006 (or something like that). Well shit... he's been kiting Montrose longer than I've been kiting all together so who am I?! I gave a friendly nod and continued to my car for some grub. When I came back, I saw the steel blue kite rigged and ready for takeoff. The kiter started with a shallow tack, far inside the yellow buoy, dropping the kite after tripping on a wave pretty close to swim area. Kite was relaunched fairly quickly and shallow tack continued.... breaking our 100 yard rule. The long tacks continued just outside the swim area, loosing a little ground each time. As he got closer, I figured now was the time to go say something. As I walked towards the water, I asked my kiter comrades to feel free to back me up. As I got close, he tacked in to the beach near the 1st guard chair, inside of 3 swimmers. This would have been a good time for him to realize he wasn't staying upwind, invoke some common and get out. Nope! Just after his transition I yelled he was WAAY to close. I most definitely got his attention and he quickly looked away. From where I was standing, seemed he just did everything except flip me the finger. I walked over to the 1st guard and said; You see that guy?... he is uncertified, has no streamer, is kiting way too close to the beach and if something happens, your swimmers could be in danger. I have already asked him not to kite and he has disregarded that. Please shut him down and if you can't, you might call your captain. She said, ok, I'll just call the captain. The steel blue kite proceeded down to the bird sanctuary where he got stuck in the corner. He continued to flail around in front of the bird area for quite some time, making numerous tacks... looking like he either just decided to have his fun down there or was making a stubborn attempt to free himself and make it out. After a half hour or so he finally walked out and walked the inside of the beach... behind most the crowd... kite a-flying. Johnny, the captain waiting for him to land and explained our system... once again! After he seemed to settle from his chewing out, I walked up with a friendly smile and with slight humor said, you see?? You really should learn the rules here because you managed to break just about every single one today. He agreed and smiled. Now sometimes our perceptive from the vantage point of under a kite is a bit different than it actually is. I've heard guys say, "I didn't get too close to the dog beach and that 1 figging dog was chasing me", to which I've had to point out, when you transitioned you had no less than 15 dogs chasing you! The one you knew about was the one that actually got close enough to bite your ass! Later, our friend on the steel blue kite was explaining his dilemma to 2 pals... and I assume this is the same explanation given the captain... about how he couldn't get enough wind to get out further, BUT, never kited inside swimmers. Well perhaps he missed the 3 he had his back to on the 1st tack in but he certainly must have seen the group he kited inside of on his even more shallow tack out. He also complained he was "stuck" by the bird area. I think that on a fairly busy day like Sunday, the thing to do would have not to take the chance. There were opps to get out before that happened.

Folks, it really ain't easy being a Mike Urban... especially when after this was all said and done and I smiled and made a light hearted comment to this guy's wife, she replied, "Don't try to be nice to me after what you just said about my husband!" ... speaking of when I told the guard he did everything but flip me off when I yelled out he was too close. I was also nice when I asked him, in front of her, to not go out in the 1st place. But you've really got to appreciate and stand up for what Mike and a few others have done to maintain our access at a nice, convenient launch along our cool skyline!

On a good note, other than Paul having to screeeam a check to a few that were just THINKING about getting too close :wink: , EVERYONE else was on their best behaviors, all proudly flying their streamers. I even saw Adrien land his kite immediately after initial launch saying. whoops... forgot the streamer!

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Tue Jul 02, 2013 4:34 pm
by adseguy
Good work pizza Mike! It's tough for sure and the worst is when they have a big smile on their face and you have to be the bad guy to tell them the drive, the setup, and anticipation has to be cut short. Ouch! I can only imagine. I got threatened to be punched in the face by some 50+ year old grouch that I wasn't allowing to blow up his kite. It's not easy and not fun, but if we all stick together like we did the last few days it'll be another successful season.

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:50 am
by Kevin
I meant post this earlier, a little redundant I suppose now.

I was lucky enough to be at Montrose Sat, Sun, and Monday. Said kiter who got booted on Sunday, I saw him there on Saturday (almost positive same guy, my apologizes if not). He was riding pretty damn close to shore, no streamer. When I got off the water I asked around and people said he was a competent regular, so I thought maybe my observation was just off.

Then I'm at my car and he comes all the way up to the grassy area with kite in the air and lands his kite up there. Which you're not supposed to do but maybe he doesn't know. So I'm up there with him and his buddy, neither of whom have a streamer. I ask them, nicely, if they know about the streamer system. He says to me "I've been coming here since 2002, nobody's ever asked me for a streamer." That's a dick response. Not something you expect in the kiter community.

You know who you are, I'm almost positive it was you who then got kicked out the next day. Sincere apologies do go a long way. I doubt you read this forum but if you do your apology is welcome. If you prefer to chat about this privately feel free to PM me I'm always willing to talk.


Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:46 pm
by WaWaZat
adseguy wrote:It's tough for sure and the worst is when they have a big smile on their face and you have to be the bad guy to tell them the drive, the setup, and anticipation has to be cut short. Ouch! I can only imagine.
Yeah, I really DID hate to ruin their Sunday afternoon at the beach. That's why I approached with a big friendly beach smile and tried to be understanding of any disappointment the facts may have invoked. After all, besides convenience for some, one of the big reasons to kite Montrose is to enjoy the scene.... it certainly isn't for clean waves or serenity. :)
Kevin wrote:"I've been coming here since 2002, nobody's ever asked me for a streamer."
Pretty sure that was the exact same response I got. Steel blue 12M or diff size that day? Sort of a stocky build, not tall, red boardshorts, dark hair, foreign accent.... I would probably remember his name if I heard it again.

I too am willing to talk... to anyone who has "questions" about the streamer system or rules. Again, I approached this guy with a friendly attitude before and after the incident and would still have that attitude the next time I talked to him in person, via email, PM, text, smoke signals.... even though his wife won't have it. :D

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:49 pm
by WaWaZat

Re: Montrose Beach- Strike....1

Posted: Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:06 pm
by West
Never be afraid of squashing someone's good time....all in the name of safety!!!!!!!!!

gonna require constant vigilance and a good deal of persuasion...and yeah it is a bummer, but it is what it is, and that is what has got to be.......just takes one bad apple to ruin the cart!!!

It's all fun and games maybe even if a kiter injures himself, but once innocent beachgoers are harmed or put in danger, it is another thing altogether.

Kite responsibly and encourage others to do so as well....our access to Lake Michigan depends upon it..... :)