Kite Tales For Reel

by Gary Crenshaw
(Hampton, GA, USA)

Like most dedicated adult kite fliers I spent a reasonable amount of time as a young person with the old paper kites from the hardware store. But for right now that's enough about that because I have a whole lot of brain spilling to do on that subject just a little later.

Strange things sometime happen while kite flying like one day I had a delta kite up at about eight hundred feet when a flock of black birds landed about half way up the kite line. The added weight caused the kite to lose a couple of hundred feet. They sat there for a minute or two and they were gone all at once. Not a big deal but how often does it happen? You can read high-tech articles all day but birds on a kite line is the kind of stuff I like to read about.

On cool fall nights when the wind is right and the moon is full and bright you can position a kite in the night sky just right to get a good photograph with the moon as your backdrop. Maybe there should be a contest for best 'Moon/Kite Shot'! (noted - T.P.)

Up until the mid-eighties I always kept some kind of a kite laying around to fly or to use as a wall decoration. However it was the late eighties when I first saw a stunt kite in action. Nothing would do until I was able to get one and learn the secrets of handling that two-line monster. I had to have the biggest, loudest and hardest pulling kite at the time and that was the Hawaian Team Kite. I taught myself to fly it and discovered where the term 'face plant' came from. In a good wind it takes a lot to man-handle that kite and after twenty years the kite is still in great shape and was well worth the money.

Getting heavy into the single line stuff is very addicting, the parafoils, flow forms, sled kites, delta wing giants and other heany lifters are superior today compared to only a few years ago. I guess the fun of lifting lights up into the night sky is just something you never get enough of, at least I dont think I ever will.

The ninties came around with even more fun with stunt kites and the pleasure of teaching newcomers the fun of handling controllable kites. I keep a small stunt kite in my vehicle that is covered with crash dirt and duct tape just to let newcomers have a hands on experience with out the worry of kite destruction. It still flys good and will stay in my fleet until it crumbles to unrecognizable shapes.

What I refer to as high altitude single line kite flying is somewhere around fifteen hundred to two thousand feet. Higher kites than that gets more into research and record attempts. Average size kites become just a dark spot in the sky after a few hundred feet anyway so most of my kite flying is around three or four hundred feet, that suits me.

Comments for Kite Tales For Reel

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Nice Kite/Bird Tale
by: Tim Parish

Great post Gary - thanks for contributing a whole lot more than just a bird/kite tale for the contest!

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to YOUR Kite Making Stories!.

FREE E-Book!

I'm referring to Simplest Dowel Kites, my popular kite-making download. It's a printable PDF file. Make a diamond, delta or sled. Each kite is capable of flying hundreds of feet up for hours on end.

Could you do me just a small favor though?

Please sign up for my free monthly publication, "Tethered Flying". No other emails will be sent, and your details are safe with me. You need to be at least 16 years old. There's...

  • A huge "photo of the month" (via a link)
  • 3 "tips of the month" (one each for beginners, parents and the more experienced)
  • A "flight report of the month" (selected from my own flying logs)

Back to top of page

Need winders, reels, flying line?

We earn a small commission if you click the following link and buy something. The item does not cost you any more, since we are an "affiliate" of Amazon.

Click here to buy anything you need. Just use the Search box in there if you need different weights or lengths of line, for example.

P.S. Keep an eye out for books by kite author Glenn Davison, a prominent kite person in the USA.

What's New!

  1. Tiny light wind newspaper kites

    Jul 09, 20 08:25 PM

    As a child (around 6) one of my parent's friends with children near my age took us outside and taught us how to make the smallest of light-wind kites from

    Read More

Wind Speeds

Light Air
1-5 km/h
1-3 mph
1-3 knots
Beaufort 1

Light breeze
6–11 km/h
4–7 mph
4–6 knots
Beaufort 2

Gentle ...
12–19 km/h
8–12 mph
7–10 knots
Beaufort 3

Moderate ...
20–28 km/h
13–18 mph
11–16 knots
Beaufort 4

Fresh ...
29–38 km/h
19–24 mph
17–21 knots
Beaufort 5

Strong ...
39–49 km/h
25–31 mph
22–27 knots
Beaufort 6

High Wind
50-61 km/h
32-38 mph
28-33 knots
Beaufort 7

Like/share this site...

Like/share this page...