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Kiteboarding location advice Palm Cove, Aug

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Created by born1962 2 months ago, 5 Aug 2018
born1962
VIC, 17 posts
5 Aug 2018 9:47PM
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I heading up to Palm Cove >12 Aug for a week and thinking of bringing my toys. I'm trying to get an understanding of the wind conditions. What sort of winds can I expect this time of year and what is the best weather station to review - is it Cairns ,Cairns Racecourse or Arlington Reef ? There does not seem to be a huge difference. Am I correct that the wind is typically 12-18 knot, or does it get stronger/weaker at this location.
Are there any specific things good / bad that I need to know about Palm Cove and-or groups that go out in this area ?
At 85kg I'm thinking maybe 11m-15m on 143 board (maybe take 165 as well) would cover me.

Thanks in anticipation for any advice.

NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 655 posts
8 Aug 2018 1:31PM
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Forget Palm Cove. Go to Port Douglas, 4-mile beach and swing past WindSwell there, as they live and breath the kite scene up there. Palm Cove is ok if PD is 20knots +. Unfortunately it depends on the wind direction being not too SE-E. It's way better when it's more NE as there is a clear passage of wind into the cove. Whereas Port Douglas is far more open to all wind directions from the East. And it's a nicer beach too. Take your two biggest kites.

CairnsKite
QLD, 2 posts
9 Aug 2018 3:02PM
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Select to expand quote
NorthernKitesAUS said..
Forget Palm Cove. Go to Port Douglas, 4-mile beach and swing past WindSwell there, as they live and breath the kite scene up there. Palm Cove is ok if PD is 20knots +. Unfortunately it depends on the wind direction being not too SE-E. It's way better when it's more NE as there is a clear passage of wind into the cove. Whereas Port Douglas is far more open to all wind directions from the East. And it's a nicer beach too. Take your two biggest kites.



Select to expand quote
born1962 said..
I heading up to Palm Cove >12 Aug for a week and thinking of bringing my toys. I'm trying to get an understanding of the wind conditions. What sort of winds can I expect this time of year and what is the best weather station to review - is it Cairns ,Cairns Racecourse or Arlington Reef ? There does not seem to be a huge difference. Am I correct that the wind is typically 12-18 knot, or does it get stronger/weaker at this location.
Are there any specific things good / bad that I need to know about Palm Cove and-or groups that go out in this area ?
At 85kg I'm thinking maybe 11m-15m on 143 board (maybe take 165 as well) would cover me.

Thanks in anticipation for any advice.


Hi there born1962
Great to hear that you are thinking of going to Palm Cove for Kitesurfing. We have a kite school up here in Palm Cove, so I can vouch that it is a primo location to ride. Our predominant wind direction here is SE. If it is blowing 20-25 out at Arlington (S- SE) and there are clear skies, you can be sure to have an epic day at Palm Cove. If its a lighter day on the reef (15 knots) and the sky is clear it can ramp up a bit stronger than 15 with a thermal. If you go further north than Palm Cove you do not get a thermal when its light on the reef. The wind usually kicks in from the south at around 1030 in Palm Cove and will swing more onshore as the day wears on. Another awesome thing about Palm Cove is that we have Double Island right on our doorstep, The whole crew love to ride over there and it is always 5 -10 knots stronger again than the coastal regions. Not only that, get out to Double Island and its nice and flat because there is a huge sandy reef running off the island.

Come down and say hi to the crew here. We are all very friendly and super keen to welcome people wanting to kite here in our special place.

Or call me and have a chat 0413721999

Without a double Palm Cove has the strongest most consistent wind in the Cairns region.

Here is a photo of Double Island (a 5 minute ride from Palm Cove)

Check out the little vid of Luke kiting out at the Island www.facebook.com/Kiteboardingcairns/videos/1082827781758478/le
Andy




NorthernKitesAUS
QLD, 655 posts
10 Aug 2018 4:43PM
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Thanks for the local knowledge Andy. I spoke coming from experience at a time when I thought, a South-SE wind would be best at Palm Cove and even better at Port Douglas, but at the time (2012 it was), I went to Yorkeys and everyone was kiting perpendicular as the wind was pretty much along the shore. So I went to Palm Cove and there was hardly a breeze. I was surprised. Later that weekend I went to Port Douglas, met Brett and co and my wife had a lesson there as well, we found that Port Douglas was the better beach for those Southerly winds. Obviously I don't live there, so I should have stated that in my original post. Apologies.
ps.... if you guys have any Naish kites that need converting out of those dreaded Octopus valves, let me know. Cheers

DanNotStan
NSW, 3 posts
12 Aug 2018 10:39AM
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Did a family trip in July for a very (unfortunately) short 1 week holiday around the Cairns region. We stayed in Palm Cove for 4 days.

I can't answer much about the weather but it was good at least 4-5 days out of 7 we were there in the region. I'm surprised FNQ is not a more popular destination for kiters/ windsurfers as it is a really nice place and the wind seemed a constant SE trade when we there. Found the locals very friendly. If the water was clear, there was surf and the wildlife not trying to kill you - I would live there in a second!

The only tip I can give is to look for accommodation at the southern end so it is a shorter walk south, out of the tourist strip (accom and restaurants).

born1962
VIC, 17 posts
21 Aug 2018 6:02PM
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I have just come back from my break in Palm Cove and had a great set of 3 kiteboarding days and 3 quiet ones - no complaints, as my legs were like jelly after long days on the water ! Andy and Luke and the other people living here are great people and a good source of information.
Here are some tips to add:
** I find it useful to look at the BOM Meteye and Google Maps when considering excursions. It will provide some insight about the various locations. Looking at maps you can see SE, E and NNE are good for Palm Cove. SSE Stronger winds will negate the effect of the mountains but adds some gusts close to shore.
** Don't go jumping in the waves on an onshore or SSE wind near the beach like some clown did, crashing his kite into some sun bathers. We don't want kiteboarding banned or restricted heavily here.
** The excursion out to double island (off palm cove) is well worth it. Cut out from the launch area aiming towards the little island, or just West of it. It is quite a distance to kite so check the forecast to make sure you can get back (and maybe consider carrying a phone with a number to call) ! There is a caretaker on the island should you get into strife, and a slab could go down well in compensation.
Also chat to Luke or Andrew, and word them up on your ideas. There is a reef running out from it which offers great flat water, but check the tides if it's running out you don't want to be on it - neap tides are great as the swell is low: I had a bit of a wave mountain on one day due to the tide variation in height, but it was fun in its own right anyway. Near the island it was flat compared to the beach.
** There are no stingy thingys at this time of the year but I wore a full length wetsuit and booties as any form of cuts in the tropical warm waters can get easily infected. The beach is sandy, but should you go out to Double island and have to stand on the reef bottom any sort of nasty can be ready to inflict a wound.
** I suggest that you bring two kites, two boards if you can to cater for a range of 10 - 25 knots. The air is softer up here compared to Melbourne so a size up on board or kite is useful, depending on your weight and what you ride.
** The off shore islands such as Green Island can be good as there is no favoured direction, (for ones with a sand surround or low profile) and mountains or buildings are less of a problem. For me they are rather expensive to get to or stay on them. Choose your timing carefully as tides are an important consideration in conjunction with the wind, you do not want a low tide on a coral shore line. As for Double Island, the best tides are neap tides as there is less depth variation. Also some islands will have high currents when they are running near the change. On Green Island the last boat leaves at 4pm (verify for yourself) which will also influence your decision.
** Consider going on Andy's kayak trip in the morning, it takes you out and around Double island and near Haycock Island. The turtles, caves and sting rays are great, but from a kiteboarding perspective it gives you a fantastic insight to wonderful flat playground in front of it.



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"Kiteboarding location advice Palm Cove, Aug" started by born1962