THE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO BE AWARE OF WHEN CONSIDERING A LAUNCH AT SUGAR COVE IS THE AIRPORT “NO FLY ZONE”
This zone projects two miles out from the end of the Kahului runway and ½ mile on each side of that two mile projection. DO NOT, UNDERANY CIRCUMSTANCES, FLY YOUR KITE IN THIS ZONE UNDER THE RUNWAY TAKEOFF PATH. YOU WILL BE SUBJECT TO ARREST BY THE DEPARTMENT OF LAND AND NATURAL RESOURCES. If you find yourself in or near this zone drop your kite and self rescue to the nearest beach.
INTERMEDIATE – ADVANCED
- BIG AIR
Due to the narrow beach, mothers, kids and fishermen it is recommended that kiters be at least intermediate before attempting Sugar Cove. You must be competent in self launching and landing.
LOCATION / DIRECTIONS
Off the hana hwy just west of Ho’okipa Beach. There is a pull of between Ho’okipa and Mama’s fish house.
Sugar Cove is best on Northeast trades. Most any other wind direction present challenges to launching and landing….. East winds are the most difficult as you must set up your kite at the downwind end of the beach as close to the rocky point as possible. When the wind is from the north it is nearly impossible to launch and get past either point. When the wind is offshore you may end up in California
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SUGAR COVE DESCRIPTION
Sugar Cove is a kiting site that was pioneered by the local kiters who live nearby. As the sport became more popular the Cove experienced much higher usage and so the usual issues arose….. safety, narrow launch and landing area, fishermen, mothers and kids and especially a condo community that is not happy to share “their” beach with anyone.
Access to Sugar Cove is via Paani Place. There is a public beach access trail from the road just windward of the condo buildings. The area upwind from the middle of the beach is a favorite spot for mothers and kids so be sure and set up well downwind of them. Some of them are married to big local fellows who don’t tolerate interference with their families…. Don’t take this lightly!!
Parking is a big issue as there are no designated spots on the access road, Paani Place. Most of the problems are cars blocking driveways and the occasional break in.
LAUNCHING & Landing YOUR KITE
When launching in northeast trades set up your kite nearer the middle of the beach as you must be able to clear the rocky point on the downwind side of the beach. Be aware of the rocks in the shallows just in front of the Sugar Cove access steps to the condos. Many kiters have ended their session before it began by kicking one of these rocks. When landing in northeast trades be sure you are confident of your solo landings as the beach is very narrow and there isn’t much room downwind to try to recover. The best solution is to make sure you have a competent kiter on the beach to catch your kite. DO NOT ATTEMPT A LANDING UPWIND OF THE STEPS AS THE BEACH IS USUALLY FULL OF MOTHERS AND KIDS. The kids surf in the shorebreak and are hard to see from the water. ALSO, JUST BECAUSE SOMEONE IS ON THE BEACH WATCHING YOU DON’T ASSUME THEY ARE THERE TO CATCH YOUR KITE….. we have had many close calls with this issue with kiters landing on unaware beach walkers.
When launching in easterly winds you must set up your kite downwind by the rocks in order to make it out past the point. After launch, keep your kite high and moving fast as you pull out past the point. Remember there are big rocks just under water waiting for you to kick them. When you lose your kite on this launch it usually goes down in the middle of the rocks to the safest thing to do is to release your chicken loop and swim in… if you don’t release and are swimming back to shore and the kite relaunches you will leave some skin on the rocks!
When landing in east winds approach from the windward end of the beach staying out past the rocky point, keeping your kite moving and then blast for the point end of the beach as the wind is very uncertain due to the coconut trees and buildings. Most of the time those new to the Cove drop their kites and swim in.
Sugar Cove isn’t the best place for kiting due to the restrcited fly zone by the FAA.
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