There’s a lot of history packed into this area. Located on the tip where the Columbia River opens up to the Pacific Ocean, Fort Stevens was once a major maritime defense port. It was built during the height of the Civil War and remained armed right up until the end of World War II. During the mid-20th century, however, the fort was disarmed and turned in a state park.
Hood River’s popularity is based off of wind. Since the 1990s, Hood River has been recognized as a world class site for windsurfing and kite surfing. As you drive along the riverside in the afternoon, you can see the boards and kites dotting the waters. This is simply a perfect place to come to if you’re interested in learning either water sport.
It’s no wonder that some people call Floras Lake, “the world’s loneliest beach.” Here is a freshwater lake whose sandy beaches are closed in by imposing rocky cliffs. This place looks like a scene right out of a survivor movie.
Believe it or not, Cannon Beach was named after a lone cannon that was found nestled in the sand back in 1846. Cannon Beach has a very relaxed atmosphere, as people lazily walk along the shore while gaping at the 235 foot high Haystack Rock – the third largest coastal monolith in the world. Or they’re looking at the catamaran sailors, kite surfers and wind surfers taking advantage of the shallow water and good winds.
Upon leaving the Outer Banks, we return to the main land. The first spot worth talking about is Wrightsville Beach. In the past, this place used to be unknown in the surfing community. But one day, a guy by the name of Ben Bourgeouis showed up and presented to the world his surfing skills at Wrightsville Beach. After establishing the sport here, dozens of surfers come here to establish a name for themselves.
What’s interesting about Ocracoke is that it is a pretty good place for wind and kite surfers, and yet it’s something of a mystery to surfers. Winds here are just as good as they are up north at the Hatteras National Seashore Area, and wind and kite surfers do just fine on the sound or ocean side.
When you reach the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, the land slims to less than 300 yards , making it seem like you are standing in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. But, despite the fact that it is secluded from human civilization, it’s usually crowded with surfers, windsurfers, and kite surfers all year round, as the Gulf Stream air keeps the waters warms. These ocean side access points create for some fun conditions no matter what sport you choose.
Although Kite Point was one Cape Hatteras’ first kite surf points, SDA made the cape a world popular spot. This place is chock full of different coves, islands, and points; all from which kite surfers can use to duck for good glass. This is a long run that ends in a point call the Slick, a curved island that is home to REAL kite surfing and REAL Slider Park. This is a run full of excitement and challenges that should not be passed up.
Kite point was the first established kite surfing point in Cape Hatteras. Constructed in 1998, this blue run is a long ride and contains some challenging obstacles to navigate around. And, this point not only works for kite surfers – it’s a great place for wind surfers as well.
The Canadian Hole is by far one of the most popular places to wind surf on the east coast. This lagoon area – aptly named after the throngs of Canadians who flock here – is part of the Pamlico Sound situated between Buxton and Avon. If you’re a wind surfer who is ready for some of the best rides of your life, you’re going to want to come here.
They don’t call Cape Hatteras the land of kite surfing for no reason. Here you have 70 miles of shore line – both sound and ocean side – where kite surfers can try out some really great rides. Vermont Hole, located on the sound side, is one of the more well known spots in Cape Hatteras. Though it has a smaller take off area (it can only hold about 3 riders maximum) compared to some of the other areas, it avoids the wind surfing community that occupies the Canadian Hole.
As you travel south on Route 12 on the narrowing Outer Banks, civilization starts to dwindle, and you’re about to enter onto Cape Hatteras. Before you actually reach the cape, however, you will first cross the bridge over the Oregon inlet, which is a good sized gap in the Outer Bank strip in which and the waters of the sound and the Atlantic Ocean meet.
Once you reach Hatteras, the land narrows considerably, leaving only enough room to pack in a couple of behemoth beach houses and a few local businesses. Rodanthe contains several areas that helped to make Hatteras one of America’s top surfing destinations. Along with surfing, powerful winds make this place a wind and kite surfing haven. In fact, as you drive along the main road, you can glimpse many kite sails peering over the sand dunes.
The island of Kauai is one of the most scenic of all the islands that make up the state of Hawaii. Hanalei Bay is no exception. The shore line is surrounded by large green mountains. Surfers come to Hanalei to enjoy the picturesque waves in the fall and winter months, while wind surfers, kite surfers, and catamaran sailors arrive in the summer months to enjoy the winds with minimal waves.
If you’ve ever dreamed to try windsurfing, you’re going to want to come here. The geography of Kailua provides ideal conditions for windsurfing as well as kite surfing all year round. The great thing about Kailua is that it is situated in a bedroom community, and thus is shielded by the tourist throngs that can usually overcrowd many of the more popular beaches. This beach is simply amazing.
Publics is easily one of South Oahu’s oldest surfing communities. It also serves up much to see – from the oncoming swells of Diamond Head, the gorgeous growing coral beneath, or even the continually developing city of Waikiki. But surfers come here because Publics provides the most consistent waves of anywhere in South Oahu. In addition, the adjoining Diamond is a most popular wind surfing and kite surfing destination of the entire Hawaiian island.
Spreckelsville is literally the windiest beach in all of the northern shores of Maui. A small residential area at only 1.5 miles long located in between Kahului and Paia, windsurfers treasure this area as it is one of the few places they can easily launch from. In fact, not only does Spreckelsville make for easy takeoff, but it also provides some good challenges for the most advanced enthusiasts.
Laniakea is favored by locals who get tired of risking their lives on the dangerous waves of the other well-known spots of the northern Oahu shores. Many simply load into cars and head west from Haleiwa until they find the Laniakea beach from the Kam highway. This is a popular surfing destination during the winter (December to February), where northwest swells create large waves, while wind and kite surfers prefer the calmer months in the summer (June to August).
Just looking at pictures of Log Cabins will leave you saying, “Whoa.” This spot was made famous in January 1998, when surfers rode the biggest waves ever recorded in history. The swells that appear in the early winter can create some of the most awe-inspiring and dangerous waves ever to be seen anywhere in the world, and can make spots like Pipeline seem puny. If you’re a surfer and this sounds great to you – be warned by the following: the going can be treacherous.
Not only is Kanaha Beach one of Maui’s most popular destinations for vacationing families, but it is also a favored location for wind and kite surfers. Even all year round, Kanaha Beach has good conditions to take advantage of.
Believe it or not, Rocky Point is one of the world’s most photographed beaches, with a one time high of 60 cameramen standing on the shoreline as they captured the daring feats of surfers from all over the globe. Why? Because Rocky Point provides the most consistent waves all year round than any other spot in the north shore. Rocky Point also serves as the point of convergence between the Ehukai crowd and Sunset Beach cronies, thus making the place a very popular and congested spot all year round.
In past decades, Sunset was known as a premier surfing destination. Unfortunately, its reputation has been diminished due to poor photograph opportunities, large waves being cut by long boarders, and major surfing events moving their venues to other areas. Although its name has become synonymous with Malibu, Sunset remains a water sport haven, as it creates great waves for surfers and serves up some good areas for wind and kite surfing.
Velzyland serves as a tribute to Northern Oahu’s local surfing legends. Named after the great California surfer Dale Velzy, this spot must be approached with respect as well as caution, because it gets ridiculously crowded.
Believe it or not, Neptune Beach was once part of the well known Jacksonville Beach. But, in 1931, a few of the local residents seceded from Jacksonville. One guy, a very wealthy guy, decided that he needed railroad transportation to take him to Mayport, and so he simply built a station for the newly formed town – christening it Neptune. When the surfing boom appeared, Neptune became a popular surfing spot in Northern Florida, but has now since welcomed wind surfers and kite surfers.
When driving upon the narrow strip of land located between the coastal beach line of Cape Canaveral and the main land, you will notice the dark blue inner waters. One spot heavily shielded by forces of the Atlantic Ocean is Calema Windsurfing, the perfect spot for wind surfers and kite surfers. This is actually a very tiny beach that has a mixture of sand grass, but this makes for an ideal launch point for water sport enthusiasts who can then take advantage of the open inner waters.
Satellite Beach is a spot that has taken a backseat to fame while its neighbors Cocoa Beach and Sebastian Inlet rake in the publicity. Surfers know about it and yet it never really receives as much credit as it should.
If you’re a kite surfer and want to go somewhere that is exclusive to you and your water sport brethren, you’re going to want to make your way to Juno Kite Beach. Juno Beach of off route A1A is a very large beach split up into sections called showers. At the beginning of each section are stairs that are neatly labeled with the coinciding number. Drive along A1A until you find shower 10, and you’ll reach the haven of kite surfers.