While kite flying is finally picking up, I am now hoping this will cause me to also post more. It is still cold up here in Wisconsin, and Iowa, and Michigan, but this year I participated in two “Ice Fly” festivals. Ultimately – these are kite festivals on frozen lakes. There is the ability to drill holes with ice augers, into the lake, and through the ice – with 20 – 30 inches on the lakes, this allows us to then anchor on the lake – with the ice. I also anchor off of my car hitch ball – this requires me to drive the car onto the ice, but it is nice, that I do have a warming hut connected to my kite. Most of the time, the kite fly is very successful, tons of spectators on the ice, and watching. And there is nothing blocking the clean winds. What we do run into at times, is heavy winds that are too heavy for the kites. This happened in Iron Mountain, Michigan – we had a few hours of good winds (12 – 20 mph) but at around 2 PM, the winds increased to a steady 35 – 30 mph, with bursts over 35 mph. Kites will not fly in this unfortunately.
In Clear Lake, Iowa, it was a different story, winds in the 15-20 mph range, and things stayed up after 11 am for the rest of the day. The festival in Clear Lake, Iowa is so popular that they think they had over 19,000 spectators, and literally, the off ramp on both Interstate 35 North, and South were backed up for over 4 miles each way. We are seeing additional festivals occur in the winter – as it gives communities something to do during the dead cold of winter, and it makes great use of a frozen lake. I have a friend that is a ice fisherman, and I was hoping to go out with him this year, both to learn how the other half of the world lives on the lake, but apparently, he feels strongly that all the fishermen would enjoy the kites… Now with that said I am not sure I am a total believer that guys out fishing REALLY want a guy out flying kites around them, but hey, I will be willing to give it a try at least once. Now, on to another subject, am I going to continue to keep up this site? I don’t know. why? because I am fairly certain not many people even read it, and while at times it is cathartic for me to write these up, I am just not sure I will continue to do it. I will probably give it another year, and then make a final decision.
There will be many festivals this spring and summer, and I am looking forward to that, and I hope to do some more flying outside of the normal events. It may be more stunt kite flying instead of show kites, but you never know. Enjoy the weather where you are, spring is just days away, and soon we will be huffing and puffing just how hot Summer is….