SOUTH PADRE ISLAND — The wide open flats at South Padre Island have long been perfect for windsurfers — and now kiteboarders. These silent sport enthusiasts have all said they catch the best winds off the Island.

And the warm weather beckons new riders to come to the best place to learn how to kiteboard.

Kiteboarders and windsurfers can go out as far as they want and fly high in the open water.

At the South Flats, beginner through advanced kiteboarders launch with plenty of flat sand for setup, good for all winds, according to Air Padre’s website. The shallow water is very flat with northeast, east and southeast winds.

The website says the North Flats, located 2 miles north of the SPI Convention Center, is the best place to kiteboard, especially for beginners, or those working through a new move.

People love it because you can go as far as you want out into the bay.

Kitesurfing Magazine says, “No matter which way the wind blows, the waist-deep waters of the Laguna Madre stay nice and flat, and the downwinders on the Gulf side offer a wide variety of wave-riding conditions ranging from sloppy small surf to big side-off perfection.”

And Kiteworld Magazine raves, “Superb wind, a million acres of flat, shallow, warm Gulf waters, warm air and water temperatures as well as a lack of crowds make this a kiter’s dream.”

The weather is great, the beach is great and there are a lot of great people on the Island.

People from around the world travel to the Island just to kite surf all year around.

All it takes are winds up to 14 miles per hour and once you get dialed in, you can turn it up on the flats and ride the waves.

There are no other spots in North America where you can kiteboard all year, every day like the Island.

GETTING STARTED

How long does it take to learn to kiteboard?

Although everybody learns and progresses at a different rate, remarkably many people are able to ride around and kiteboard at a beginner level within their first 4-6 hours of kite experience.

Is kiteboarding expensive?

Kiteboarding, relatively speaking, actually does not cost very much. Although learning to kiteboard and purchasing gear does generally cost a few thou-sand dollars, that can represent virtually all the costs associated with the sport for years’ worth of riding.

How long does kite-boarding gear last?

Kiteboarding gear will last for years if treated properly. Although it is important to inspect your equipment before every session for signs of wear or damage, most riders won’t start finding anything of concern until their gear has at least three years of use, and even then the repair or replacement costs for worn-out items are generally very low (less than $100).

What wind conditions are best for kiteboarding?

Kiteboarding takes place in wind between 12 or 13 mph at the lightest, and 30 mph at the strongest. Although it is possible in winds less than 10-11 mph, it is very difficult even for specialized light-wind kites to fly in such light wind, and therefore requires a lot of rider kite handling skill.

Source: Prokite South Padre Island