After almost two months of being in Germany, I finally get a chance to go out to the Ammersee to check out some of the local action that I had been hearing about all these years.
I’ve been putting off riding for a why’ll after the season down in SA but though it’s about time to start hitting the water with some of the Locals I had met and suck up a bit of fresh water and not a load of salty sea water for a change. Hahaha…
Packing up the smart car full of gear we head off thinking it may take at least two hours to get there from Munich, But No. Not even 45 mins later we are pulling up to the parking lot and meeting with the first of the local guys that comes down now and again to ride.
After a bit of chit chat it’s a 100 meter walk between the trees and your down near the water ready to see what its all about.
In the pictures below you can see, not much place to Launch, but the enthusiasm to get out is incredible. Every inch of grass is used to set up your gear and take advantage of the windy conditions. Lines are a mess and kites no matter what size are pumped up in hope that that is the right size for the day. But it’s’ early and the conditions are cold still with rain passing over the snow covered Alps mountain range in the background. “It’s beautiful” gusty but beautiful.
I’m transported back in to my Solent sailing years and thinking of the winter winds as a great days sailing, challenging if anything, but fun all at the same time. I pump up an 8-meter Cabrinha and get a 136 Custom to ride for the afternoon thanks to one of the local guy’s and Carolin. I am missing my Airush Razor though after the season I’ve had with it, it’s pretty much all I want to ride these days.
I’m ready to fly but not before I launch a couple of locals first. It’s sketchy, very sketchy, but keeping my cool I through experiance into every launch and watch as some guy’s just throw there kiters kite into the water for it to drift round and launch in the down wind position… I watch and believe it’s all ok until I see a guy get dragged half way into the bushes. Thanks for the launch buddy is all I can think he’s saying in the most aggressive German Voice out there. Hahaha but he’s ok and up and riding with in seconds as if it was all to be expected.
But now it’s my turn, and will my launcher guy do the right thing orrrrrrrrrr, no there it goes my kite is dropped into the water on its merry drift into the down wind position. Experience once again kicks in, kite is launched and I’m off.
First couple of runs are great with plenty time to do what I want. And then the drop… the wind switches off with no warning at all and I’m left making my way back to the side wondering if it was a good idea at all to pump up and go riding, I’m put off but patient as always and start talking to the local guy’s again about riding in Cape Town and Langebaan and if they’ve ever been down there.
I begin to wonder if I’m at all bothered with the rest of the day, when a clear patch of sky comes through and with it, wind… I launch Carolin “safely” and proceed to pump up a 12-meter and get a little more power under me. Game on.
This time I ask a guy I’ve been catching to half the day to help me out and the Launch goes all smooth. I’m out and riding in the Ammersee with perfect conditions and no stress on the water. Locals all flying together with no worries as if they all know it’s the best place for the day and the only bit of riding for the week, so savor every moment of it before back to the office tomorrow is pretty much the though you see on there faces as they pass with a smile.
I’m happy, I’m jumping and just enjoying the feeling of riding somewhere different and remembering that’s why I enjoy kiting so much. The People and the places you’ll go and the challenges of every condition thrown along the way are all part of it that.
After an hour or so on the water the air once more becomes gusty and unsure. Clouds start to cover up above us again, but we don’t care, it’s been a good day and decides its best to head back in and hit up some lunch/dinner and catch up about the day.
All in all Ammersee was awesome. Great local crowed of guys and girls all with smile on their faces enjoying the best of what Mother Nature had to offer for the day. I’m happy and now I’m off to have a German beer to make me even happier.
Thanks Ammersee Come to Langebaan anytime.