Back in 2017, I came to a point in my life where I was dealing with a lot of grief.  I was coming to terms with losing a family member to cancer, and also lost someone I was in a deep relationship with.  Things seamed to be quite dim, rainy, and dark around my environment – and I needed a plan to lift me out of the pit

Luckily I had a good support system in place – great friends and family. But something else was needed to help me shift.

Then I remembered a trip I had taken recently – I had been sitting on a bean bag chair on a beach, far away –  and saw something strange on the horizon. It was about six o-clock, and the sun was low in the sky.  There were beautiful, dark orange and red hues dancing on the rolling waves.  And then, there it was – entering the scene, a guy attached to, what looked like a kite, skirting into view. He appeared so graceful, riding up the crest of the wave, then rolling down its backside. Finally, with a movement of his arms, he lifted himself 20 feet into the air, flying horizontally for  30 feet, and then touching down with a perfect landing. It was magnificent.

This was the perfect the ‘shift’ I was seeking!

So I loaded up craigslist, found an ad for ‘used kite-boarding equipment’ drove into Vancouver, and proceeded to buy all the wrong gear! 😱

I then transported myself to the local kite-boarding hot spot in  Squamish, B.C., strode up to a Big Red Bus labeled ‘Sea to Sky Kite-boarding‘ and said two words to the Sensei at the helm:

“Teach me”

For the next 6 weeks, I found myself dashing down the Sea to Sky highway twice a week to learn the art.

It was exhilarating!

Finally, after 10 lessons of learning how to set up and launch my kite, body dragging back to the board I just abandoned in the middle of the river, and expelling mouth fulls of brackish water, I finally became an independent rider!

(There is of course,  a much much longer version of this story, but for now, I will keep it short, and share with you some of the pictures a close friend took recently.

Kite-boarding has truly become a healthy addiction for me – and the ocean has helped to fill my soul with the healing it was seeking!

I highly recommend it to anyone who is atleast 45% athletic.  You can start if you have a belly, I did, but its a lot easier of you don’t… cuz it makes grabbing your board a bit more difficult! By the way, it doesn’t matter if you are 7 years old, or 75, kite boarding is an all age sport.

By the way, if you ARE interested in getting into the sport, please don’t do the same mistake I did with buying used gear.  It may be ok to buy a used board, but do yourself a favor and save up until you can start with new kites. I highly recommend you talk with either Bret, or Vince, the owners at North Shore Ski and Board in North Vancouver.  These guys really know their stuff as they have been kiters for years. They also are super nice and provide a lot of after sales service that comes in very handy for the beginner.

Thanks for reading about one of my great passions!

P.S. The pictures taken below were done for me by a good friend Hek Eliot of Elevate Pro Photo   Thanks Hector for the great shots!