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RE: [snowkiteidaho] The Birthday ride

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  • Gear Daddy, LLC
    Happy B-Day Darrel sorry I missed that session. Eddy ... From: snowkiteidaho@yahoogroups.com [mailto:snowkiteidaho@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Darrel Thomas
    Message 1 of 3 , Feb 6, 2006
      Happy B-Day Darrel sorry I missed that session.
      -----Original Message-----
      From: snowkiteidaho@yahoogroups.com [mailto:snowkiteidaho@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Darrel Thomas
      Sent: Sunday, February 05, 2006 9:39 AM
      To: Scott Lossmann; Steve Martinez; snowkiteidaho@yahoogroups.com
      Cc: Dana Wellington; Shannan Thomas; Kris Nevers; Kevin McDowell; Karen Hoenig; Bob Lee
      Subject: [snowkiteidaho] The Birthday ride

      What a day! 
      Seven of us met up at Albertson's, J, Steve, Kris, Bob, Dana, Shannan and I at 8:00.  We got to Soldier Mtn about 10:30, just before the snow hit.  We found lots of powder stashes and had a great time inspite of the total lack of visibility,  Around 2:00 we went in for some lunch, and someone noticed the lifts had stopped.  The cold front had come, bringing wicked NW winds, causing them to close the mountain.  Fine by us, we were ready to check out the kiting scene anyway.  Bob, Kris and Dana headed for home
      We looked at the golf course down the road fromt he ski hill, but it was pretty gusty, so we went on to the snowmo park.  on the way, the sky would clear and it would look awesome, then 5 minutes later it would get socked in and snow like a mother, then clear, then snow...   We got to the park, J and I rigged small, but immediately went back for the big guns.  Steve was smart and started on his 14m.  we were having a kick ass time.  Steve and I were working our way up wind, hitting all the favorite spots.  I could see J from time to time riding back and forth near the parking lot.  The winds were a bit light, but at least we could see for the most part.  I was keeping an eye on the horizon, because I didn't want to get caught by one of those nasty squalls.  Eventually, the wind picked up and the light was getting better. It was becoming an epic session.  I was getting caught up in the experience, just cruising back and forth, jumping all over the place.  I quit keeping an I out for that nasty squall. 
      Sure enough, the bastard hit us, 35+ wind, wicked  turbulant gusts, and total white out.  I had just made it over to Steve and said we had better get the f*** outta here.  His kite was down but not for long, mine was yanking the shit out of me and nearly uncontrolable.  I dropped my kite, and started hauling it in.  Steve shot past and said he was heading for the road.  I considered just waitng for the squal to pass, but who really knows how long that might be...  I opted for packing up, slapping my climbing skins on and pulling out the ol' GPS.  We were maybe half a mile West of the parking lot when the shit hit the fan.  Steve made it to the road, though he almost found it by crashing onto it in the blizzard.  I hiked straight to the parking lot.  On the way, the snow let up and I saw Steve on the road, and J's kite near the parking lot.  I was relieved that we had all managed to survive.  J had some issues landing in the storm and had to cut the kite loose.  The good news is it didn't get away, it landed at the far corner of the parking lot.  My wife, Shannan, who was snoozing in the truck, was instrumental in the final stages of the search and rescue.  She gave J a ride to look for his kite, and spared Steve some of his long walk back down the highway.  Lessons learned were:  If the weather is at all questionable, have a GPS, know how all the Safeties work on your kite, and have a plan for self rescue.
      What an awesome way to spend a B'day!  Everything had gone according to plan, with the fine powder skiing in the morning, the switching of the winds and clearing skies right after lunch, the good kiting session, and the bonus of some high adventure thrown in on top.  I wish everyday was my Birthday. 
      Thanks to everyone who came along.  I hope y'all had as good a time as I did!
      Hawk and Graig, what did you guys find in the morning?
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