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Home bliss – 060813

You know you live in the right place when you see the airport bus and think “So so glad to live here”. Perfect place to combine kiting & work, after a windless summer it was divine to be back on Sola beach.

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Lofoten, Northern Norway – 200713

AMAZING nature!
Me & my kitefriends living in Stavanger headed to Lofoten for an active week of hiking, surfing, kiting & camping. This place was 2nd runner up (after New Zealand) when Lord of the Rings was in the making. I used to say “When I´m older I will travel Norway”. Life´s too short to postpone things, falling asleep to the midnight sun and waking up to this view is priceless:




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Two guys lived on the beach for one year and built this house – check out North of the Sun


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Driving Tenerife – 050113

Rental car = way to make charter vacations doable, driving Tenerife is scenery after scenery.


…should read more blogs to learn how to pose:


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Strapless waveboard jibing – 010113

Broke the code!
After testing gear with the Nobile team last year last May I decided to try wave kiting. The first session I made one jibe in 3 1/2 hours -meaning I fell down all the other times. Day after it worked!
Picture 2
Wave boards always seemed frail to me and I hate when things break. Nobile Infinity has a wooden core and side walls; sceptisism towards wave boards turned into passion.

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Warm winds Christmas in El Medano – 301212

5 minutes from the airport is the main kitespot on Tenerife, windy every day – no better way to spend Christmas!
Our local hangout Flashpoint cafe; charming place with the nicest paintings:

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Charter Love – 241212

Christmas-presents arrived from Nobile just before take-off:
Last-minute deal to beautiful Tenerife with breath-taking mountains, a charming kite village, shopping in the Northern capitol and warmth in the touristic South. What´s not to like about Norwegian newspapers on every corner.
Christmas Eve – Mona refused to pose before Jesus arrived

How it felt trying to stay lying down on the beach

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Breathtaking mountains at Suleskar – 050712



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Road to heaven, kitespot Sherman Island – 050612

…driving Antioch Bridge, butterflies in my stomach…

Back in 2004 studying at Berkeley, this place stuck at the back of my head. Something about windmills, California sunshine and the highlight: chill people enjoying the wind. One of my favorite videos is this one (no clue who they are).

Just another day at Sherman; skateboarding “uphill” on a trainer kite

Looking small sitting at an American campsite table

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Norwegian Kiters Weekend in Denmark – 260512

70-80 Norwegian kiters gathered for a super weekend of barbequing and playing volleyball in the sun, unfortunately the wind didn´t really hit. Seems the Norwegian kite community is growing fast!

Roomies Mona & Andre + Tone, Stian & Hallgrim whom I got to know in Boracay this winter

Valuable items gets a security belt

Mona prepared us for Denmark; “Guide to understanding the Danes” & “Fun car games”

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KTA Boracay Report from a Rider – 160112

(Article in the magazine Sports Asia)
What better place to start off a new KTA season than where 2nd season ended successfully in March, on this dreamlike Filipino island of Boracay. On one side of the island tourist heaven, a short walk to the other side you arrive in kitesurfers haven. Training grounds for many of the riders during winter season, Boracay is windy close to every day from mid-December to April. And so it kicked off with 3-star ratings on Windguru… Sunrise over Bulabog Beach:

Topping last years event with 68 riders, yet again a record with 79 riders registering!
Now in it´s 3rd season KTA has really managed to build a positive reputation amongst riders. In times where “everyone” is fighting for limited sponsorship resources (PKRA, KSP, KTE, KTA…) this does not affect the competitors, and it for sure it doesn´t seem to affect the cheerful mood of the organizers either. Down to basics leadership is key, and sociable organizers and judges certainly lay the grounds for an enjoyable event. On Bulabog beach the KTA attitude and Filipino spirit come together for an event that has inclusion and friendliness written all over. Experiencing hands-on the positive vibes was probably what made Aqua Boracay announce that they want to be in it for the long run and sponsor this event for 5 years to come!

Strong winds on first day of competition did not stop riders from giving it all in freestyle, and single eliminations finished half an hour before sunset. In the judge tower were two skilled guys usually seen pleasing a crowd from the water; Turkish Sedat Celenk (Cabrinha) and French William Bourget (North) -William unfortunately recovering from a knee surgery. Together with two regulars on the judging team, Mars Gersbach and head judge Stephan Hertig, they had no breaks from first to last heat with 38 competitors going for their best moves. Being an ambassador of kb4girls I was especially thrilled to see 16 female freestylers signing up, and in the twintip raceclass there were 17! It seems girls inspire each other to enter the competitive scene -hopefully this will push the level and passion of kiting in girls even more in years to come.

Day two was a good mix of racing and double elimination as low tide in Boracay is not raceboard-friendly (fins are too long). The day opened with a surprising announcement; one hour before competition the girl announced at 3rd during finals yesterday was notified by phone that she had to do a rerun after a protest. On a new day in different conditions this was not a very welcomed surprise on such short notice, so day 2 opened with a single-rider heat before double eliminations. Moving on to racing, 62 riders (!) made a very colorful skyline -introducing the twintip race class KTA makes competition accessible for almost everyone. By encouraging riders of different levels to join for the fun of it, the organizers really hit one of the key points of events: promoting a love for the sport.
14-year local talent Stefano Ganugi showed off kiteloop slims
Freestyle Mens
Third day had perfect conditions for finishing freestyle double eliminations, and this event has really shown some up and coming young riders. The European tour seems more dominated by younger riders compared to the Asian tour, but the podium spots did not reflect this: 2nd and 3rd places in mens freestyle were both riders below 20 years old, in 3rd place Slovenian Jaka Komocar at only 15 years old! Another rider to watch out for is one year younger local rider Stefano Ganugi who ended 6th, pulling of kiteloop slims rumor has it this talent is without proper sponsorship… Ben Bowd (Slingshot, Greece/UK) had to defend his 1st place after singles, but could not hold up against entertainer Ukrainian Andrej Salnik (Airush) who won after 2 final heats. A true entertainer always with a smile on his face: last season on Boracay Andrey took out a pair of flipflops and kited on them in strong winds!

3rd place, 15-year-old Jaka Komocar
Freestyle Womens
Weeks ago word on the island was Russian Champion Veronica Soloveykina (Best Kiteboarding) would get to top of the podium in womens freestyle. Early on she impressed the crowd with a tantrum to blind and went through the competition winning all of her heats. Another powerful rider spending winter season on Boracay is Estonian Kristiin Oija; she landed a few air passes (blind judge, blind judge 3) and with higher consistency she will probably rise to the podium at later events. A very consistent rider at 2nd place was kiwi Susan Key (Cabrinha) who actually decided to stop competing back in 2007. Her skills are very much intact and hopefully this experience inspires her to come back and spread more of that positive energy! “Local” Australian Ali Dudfield (Slingshot) of Freestyle Kite Academy Boracay landed an array of blind tricks securing 3rd place: this season she will for sure be in it for a spot on the overall podium.

Raceboard class
In racing all of the classes were on the water together, and what a spectacular show on the first day. In the production board class most people expected Yo (Narapichit Pudla, Thailand) to excel after breathing down the neck of pro-rider Bruno Srouka last season. However, excitement was on as Turkish Champion Salih Cakir opened the show by winning only a few board lengths in front of Yo! The excitement was over when Yo was disqualified from racing on a different board than he registered for the competition (the race board he was on is not yet eligible for racing). A simple explanation; the international kiteboarding association (IKA) and others are working hard to get kitesurfing into the Olympics, and the Olympics are most fond of disciplines with low dependance on judging/scoring. So the focus is on promoting the race board class, and part of getting there is having all race boards be registered in an international register (as in other sailing disciplines). If you want to be in it for the win and contribute to kitesurfing getting into the Olympics: your equipment has to be approved… For the womens racing it came as no surprise German Kathrin Borgwardt (now Cabrinha) won, she is the only rider with experience and investment on the womens side on the Asian tour and mostly excels in every race. This might be changing though as there were 6 women on raceboards here on Boracay, and when promoting it as a new Olympic sport it will probably become more attractive in the nearby future.

Twintip race class
In this discipline varying conditions is often an issue: the wind window is narrow from wind being too light for twintip race and too low for freestyle. KTA intends making competition accessible for everyone, however with 145 cm twintips and having to get hold of an extra big kite, it is certainly honorable but quite a challenging intention to fulfill. In the end it all comes down to how many hours of wind one gets. No matter varying conditions, Polish Michalina Laskowska took a well deserved first place with 4 out of 6 races won, and 2nd runner up Norwegian Rebecka Maudal gave her credits coming of the water with this statement “She is so freaking fast!”. 3rd place went to Russian Dina Muldasheva, but with stronger winds it might as well have gone to KTA newcomer Estonian Madli Olem -kiting is a weather dependent sport, so the margins are small. For the mens twintip class it was a lot of local riders battling it out on the water as 6 out of the 10 spots are held by Filipino riders -but on top of the podium was the speedy and always cheerful Kerem Balik from Turkey.

Next event: Mui Ne
At the end ceremony on White Beach organizer Willy Kerr announced the next tour stop really illustrating what the KTA is all about: a love of the sport and a tour for the riders to enjoy. Vietnam in February will be a grassroot driven event as sponsorship is hard to come by, which makes it too economically challenging to arrange a racing discipline. This doesn´t stop the organizers from giving it all and throw the event though, and hopefully many of the faces from Boracay will be seen on the beaches of Mui Ne a month from now.

Videographer Jim Thirion of Lines Productions and photographer Alexandru Baranescu are doing a terrific job; check out Kiteboard Tour Asia on Vimeo and Facebook for more visuals.

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Stavanger Kite Spots 2011 – 030112

Orre Beach April 4th:

Spot X April 24th, our flatwater spot on SW:

Sola beach May 3rd:

Brusand was unbelievable end of Easter at 22 degrees, bikini in April.

Another Sunday, another beach! Beach at Sele May 8th:

Glimpses from Refsnes in end of May, another SW flatwater spot:

Super NW flatwater spot in June & July

Sweetest kite caddy ever, Thomas at Brusand August 13th:

Sandeviga, W flatwater, natural stone molo at the start of the bay:

A great year – super roomie Marit smiling on Brusand Sep 25th!

I´m not much of a wave kiter or surfer, stole a few photos to give an impression
(from Audun Haugen, Richard A Newman & Kari Schibevaag)

And a VIDEO from Jeremie Tronet if you want to see more…

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KTE France – 041111

The bay of Biscay did not cross my mind as a kite destination until Saint Gilles Croix de Vie was the final destination on the European tour this year.

Best thing about registration day is meeting up with other kite addicts; competition is about the people, the roadtrip, the vibe and exploring new destinations.

By car there are for sure hidden gems along this coastline: after seeing the endless stretch of beach -absolutely recommended if you´re looking for new European destinations

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Wrap-Up Kite Tour Asia 2010/2011

Jim Thirion/Lines Productions; Super Video!
After having a blast at KTA Boracay back in February 2010 I thought there couldn´t be a better place than Kite Tour Asia for making a debut on the competitive kitesurfing scene. So off I went for the 2nd season of the tour -and this spring I started the countdown for the 3rd tour before this one ended! Here´s a walk down memory lane from this season´s tour, spending the winter months in Boracay, Philippines attending 4 out of 5 events.

It was a flash backdrop for the first tour stop, KTA Turkey in September, being held at 7800 Cesme, a beautiful resort 80 km from the 3rd largest city of Turkey, Izmir. It couldn’t´t have kicked off any better with sunshine, turquoise waters and good wind on registration day, and the local organizers definitely contributed to the good vibe staying on top of everything with a smile on their face. The competition area also showed it´s best side the first days; not normally being a kite spot and with side-onshore wind, the riders showed off some spectacular moves right in front of the venue. A highlight of the single elimination was Robin Snuggs (UK) up against Mallory De La Villamarque (FR) in the men´s semifinal. Last season in Boracay the excitement in the air was sky-high before the decision was in that Robin defeated Mallory in the final. However, this time around Mallory took the victory, and also was the one to stand on top of the podium for the men´s freestyle.

West-coast Turkey seems to be a hidden gem so far to the European kitesurfing crowd; with the super conditions here, KTA Turkey also was a scene for very skilled Turkish riders. On the last day of competition Arzu Taylan gave British Champion Hannah Whiteley a battle for the freestyle title in the double elimination, and a few of the spectators gasped as she did not hold back going for kiteloops in strong and gusty offshore winds. Gusty offshore-winds unfortunately made the last days of competition more challenging for both organizers and riders, and we could see why the beach is not the usual spot to kite in this area (which are Pirlanta Beach & Alacati). The jet-ski was heavily used as rescue service during racing as riders struggled to make it back to the beach. However the organizers prioritized very well with the given conditions and in the end all disciplines were completed; freestyle doubles, 9 races, kiteloop challenge and hangtime competition.

As for me, it was for sure motivating to take part in my first international competition, and it gave me important experience for later. Earlier I´ve said “when choosing between two kite sizes, ride the smaller because it will require more when it comes to timing and technique”. However, this is not an advice to follow for a freestyle heat where you want to easily go upwind, and the wind drops just a little bit when you are out there waiting for the green flag…

Turkey was an excellent place to open KTA this season, and hopefully the event gave inspiration to kiters looking for new places to explore. One main intention of KTA though is to give Asian riders a competition scene, so Turkey won´t be a stop next season as it will be too costly for riders who wish to join the whole tour to travel all the way. Consider making it a destination for yourself as there´s an array of kite spots to choose from, food is amazing and the people are generous and lively!

Missing out on KTA China in November, it was with eager anticipation I traveled to KTA Vietnam in January in a group of 11 riders traveling together from the Philippines. Arriving in the middle of the night in Saigon it was a challenge finding transportation (and we don´t travel light), but in the early morning on registration day we arrived in Mui Ne. The forecast was not too promising for the first days, so we got some much needed rest after traveling, enjoyed delicious Vietnamese food (in Mui Ne, try restaurant Lam Tong) and the coast line was explored on scooter late in the afternoon when the wind did not make an appearance.

In low wind the racing discipline started already on the first day of competition. This season twintip racing was introduced as a tour discipline, and daring to introduce a new discipline also poses new challenges which I reckon the KTA crew are looking into before next season, i.e. twintips can´t race in low wind like raceboards, several riders change board sizes between races (rules state you can only have one board), and twintip riders going on large school boards (intention of traveling with less gear is gone, or riders from the local spot might be favored from having more gear around…). Despite the challenges though, the twintip race class has been a success on the tour and all-in-all it´s definitely a positive effort to make competing more accessible to everyone wanting to take part.

At the 11th hour the wind gods blessed us, and the final event day was a busy one; racing and the whole freestyle single elimination for 9 female and 29 male competitors was carried out. Mui Ne showed us what it can offer when the wind is on, which also brought an intimidating shore-break. After a rough preparation where the main sponsor pulled out at the last moment, this windy day was karma rewarding the KTA crew for their effort and jovial attitude!

The always exciting clash of Philippino Ken Nacor and Yo from Thailand (Narapichit Pudla) happened in the semifinal, this time Ken advancing to the finals to meet Japanese Hiro (Hironobu Nakano). At the same time I was riding my own heats ending up 2nd in freestyle; Japan took home the victory both in the female and male class as I was defeated by Aya Oshima, a good-spirited rider who has shown some great moves on the water this season. As for off-the-water events, the end ceremony was a blast and we also enjoyed a KTA movie night with the tour stop videos made by Jim Thirion/Lines productions (all available on Vimeo).

In February a big group of riders again made our way out of the Philippines, this time heading for KTA Thailand in Pranburi. We were all quite excited for the Thai food awaiting us (by the end of the week I almost had Pad Thai coming out my ears), and spent one night taking in impressions from the buzzing big-city-life in Bangkok. Next day after a bus-ride we arrived well in time for the thermal afternoon winds and a KTA freestyle clinic session by pro-rider Alberto Rondina on registration day. The spot in Pranburi is a quiet one; with most of the kitesurfing action in Thailand happening in Hua Hin (30 min north) we had the beach almost all to ourselves. Thailand is not known for strong winds, and there was no rush getting all set up in the morning as the thermal came stronger around noon.
Sarah Demdoum had made her to Thailand all the way from France to get the female freestyle title, among many stylish tricks she did a hooked-in Back to wrapped (I´ve watched it quite a few times afterwards on video to get my mind around it)! Another group of riders worth mentioning is the newly established Vietnamese Kinn Team, with their talented riding and smiling faces they´re a cheerful crowd that I hope will follow the whole tour next season. Also we were 4 girls from my hometown in Norway competing in Thailand -we didn´t know each other much from before of, and by coincidence we all made plans for going to the same event, eager to exchange Norwegian snowkiting for warm waters.
On KTA this season there is also “the oldskool project” initiated by German rider Toby Braeuer of Kiteforum, and in Thailand he impressed many spectators showing off his fascinating board-offs and tricks you do not see every day. Maybe “the oldskool project” will inspire riders to incorporate some extraordinary moves in their riding, making the sport even more appearing to an audience? Another skilled oldskool rider was entertaining everyone in Thailand with “The Jesus walk”, Turkish rider Taner Aykurt, this time taking home the male freestyle title and overall did very well in all disciplines on the tour.
Less than 3 weeks after Thailand, as part of “the Boracay family” I didn´t have to travel for the season finale; KTA Boracay in March. Due to the unstable political situation in Korea a planned final 6th tour stop in April was cancelled, and Boracay really lived up to the reputation of being one of Asias premium kitespots. This final event was also the debut for KTA joining forces with the KB4Girls foundation, with Kristin Boese being on site to hold a clinic both for girls who were competing and for those wanting to learn new tricks and enjoy the sport.

Honored to be part of the KB4Girls-team as an ambassador I helped Kristin coach for the first day, and with a total of 27 girls signed up, Kristin and I had an exciting morning getting to know every participant and training together on KTA registration day. After coaching I´m now more inspired to get in touch with any rider I meet on a spot (no matter gender), and already I´m stoked for next seasons joint KTA/KB4Girls-event. With the howling winds of Boracay (sometimes over 30 knots) all the disciplines were completed within 4 days with freestyle double elimination, 12 races, the oldskool project and a speed competition. World class racer Bruno Sroka held a KTA racing clinic on registration day -maybe nervous to give his best advices away as Thai rider Yo was keeping up with him quite well for the race competition? It will be exiting to follow Yo the next seasons after seeing how close he was to Bruno already in this event, however Yo is also the Asian freestyle champion (while Bruno specializes in racing only). Pretty close one shot by KTA-photographer Alexandru Baranescu:
Bulabog Beach on Boracay island is a great hangout also for those who enjoy watching the competition, and probably this spot was the one with most “buzz” going on around the scenes. Everyday life is usually very busy on this beach, and a kite wrapped around a palm tree is a common sight. After securing the 3rd overall spot on the tour by advancing into the semi finals in the single elimination, the extra excitement of all the familiar people giving advice got me defensive in the high winds for double elimination-so I got a lesson in always keeping faith in my own skills as I landed a kite-loop just after the siren sounded. Visiting Boracay the last month before the event was also a Nobile rider excelling on the water, Mike “the Knife” Blomvall from Sweden. I won´t forget riding upwind of him as he entered his heat performing a “dead man” – keeping the oldskool spirit alive! Mike went on to win all his heats placing him on top of the podium, and for the women it was again Japanese Aya Oshima who took the victory in front of tour regular Kathrin Borgwardt (Germany). After the prize giving I carried my trophy home thinking about how I would carry it by hand when flying back to Europe -but how Aya, Yo, Kathrin and Taner got all their trophies with them having won several trophies, I have no idea. After a delicious dinner and joyful awarding night, KTA this season was rounded up with a foam-party and traveling back to Europe the next day went by in no time. Standing Ovations go to the KTA organizers – they´ve done an amazing job this season, and most important of all; no matter what´s going on behind the scenes, you always find them with a smile on their face contributing to the lively and positive atmosphere that characterize the KTA events!

After spending more hours on airplanes than in a car this winter I´m back in Norway working and enjoying the beaches outside Stavanger, Norway. The love for warmer waters will bring me new adventures, and I hope to see you on a beach somewhere in the future – if you spot me I´ll be flying under a Nobile kite; big thanks to Nobile Kiteboarding for the support!

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Middle East Easter – 22.04.11

Aqaba, Jordan, why not?
Wind & the Red Sea with flights being cheaper than going home to Trondheim.

The spot; Tala Bay, had the water all to myself, weird feeling!

Diving or snorkeling the Red Sea and want to avoid the hustle of Egypt, head to Aqaba before the rest of the world finds it!
Take a look at these beautiful photos: www.diveaqaba.com

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Red Bull Ragnarok 2011 – 02.04.11

One of the biggest snowkite races in the world up at Hardangervidda.

My teletubbie friends:

What an amazing sight with all the kites in the air – registration limit was 200 participants.

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First weeks of the season – 09.01.11

Back in paradise! Etter en særdeles skuffende høst i Trondheim var skillsa temmelig fraværende – litt trist hvor fort de forsvinner om man er ute av gamet for lenge… For de som ikke kjenner til Boracay; dei lita øy som ligger 40 minutters flytur sør for Manila.

Vinden har virkelig slått til, og det å gå fra “kite-for-moro” til å forberede seg på konkurranse har gjort noe med det mentale… En mårra jeg våkna 7 og hørte vinden tok jeg meg selv i å tenke “Nå må jeg ut og kite” fremfor “Yeah, viiiind!!!”

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