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Went for an urban fly the other night...

John Barresi


Believe it or not, I don't actually fly locally very much...
Sometimes though, I get the itch and wander out to one of my favorite Portland haunts.

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They all have one thing in common, pretty variable winds of anywhere from 0-8 mph with changing directions... Fact is, that stuff really gets me off and I'm very much at home with it.

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This time out I went to Eastbank Esplenade, on the east side of the Willamette River, immediately north of the Hawthorne Bridge - $1 per hour parking, all concrete or asphalt and mostly covered by two overpasses (I-5) so it works even when it's raining. :)


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Short lines, a bit of wind, just enough light & adventure is open to inspired flight.  I especially like your comment on the changing winds.  It used to frustrate me but now I embrace the challenge.  I haven't gone any shorter than a 30 foot line set but 20's are on the horizon.  Some of my best, or maybe most enjoyable, sessions have been at night.  Great pictures.  Your custom car tag is so cool.   SHBKF

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Try all lengths for your own taste, but I've found anything shorter than 30' doesn't give me enough window for the detailed flight that I favor (geometric lines, patterns, etc, what I call "running track") but is still short enough to run an orbit around the kite to generate wind or change flight direction. :)

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Re the license plate, I couldn't believe it when I asked the DMV clerk...

"Really? K-I-T-E-S is available?"  
(insert stunned face and delayed response here)

In Oregon of all places, lots of "founding kite fathers" live or have lived here.

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1 hour ago, Frankieflyin said:

I'm flying on about 25 ft and like John said. Anything less than 30' doesn't give you enough of a window

I have flown dualies on five meter lines quite extensively.  The very small window is fun with five foot wide kites but the eight footers barely have enough room to make a sweeping turn.  Your personal wind shadow is a factor also.  Some power kites are flown off the bridle lines for urban mayhem.  I'll stick with the thirty foot quad lines for now.  SHBKF

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