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Another Side of SPI (Part One)

Part 1 of A Series of Kiteboard Adventures on South Padre Island

Kiteboarding at South Padre Fishing Shacks
  Kiteboarding at Fishing Shacks (Part One)

There is so many more riding locations on SPI than many people realize. If you have ridden here, then you know about the main flat water spots at the North Flats and the Convention Center. You probably also know about the truly flat water riding in the undeveloped canal system in between those two spots, as well as the huge flats beach a few miles north of the North Flats. Throw in the 33 miles of no rules coastline, 20 of which you can drive on, 10 of which you can catch a taxi or free shuttle to, and you might think you have the place dialed. But no, there is more.

The Fishing Shacks is a fabled destination a short 30 minute boat ride from the docks on SPI, and aside from incredibly smooth winds that have traveled across miles of unobstructed flat water, the Fishing Shacks offers what has to be the largest expanses of mirror like, glassy water riding in the world. Why this phenomenon occurs i have no idea, but it is a holy grail of wake-style kiteboarding well worth the trip.

Several Kiteboard pictures (showcased below) from this trip were taken from an elevated observation tower positioned on a small canal that cuts between two low islands. The canal was a great place to throw down for the birds eye camera, but a few hundreds yards to the south lies literally acres of unobstructed glassy water. With no ripples, the water reflects an image of your kite, your body, and the nose of your board like riding across a mirror, and besides being the perfect surface for throwing and landing moves, its a complete mental trip to ride across.

After a few hours sessioning the canal and cutting up the glass to the south, our crew took a lunch break, then loaded and launched the boats for a downwind run past the Fishing Shacks which the spot is named after. The shacks are built on stilts and are off the grid, self-supported base camps for hard core fishing expeditions. Ranging from basic to decadent, some of the shacks are... well, shacks; while others are 3 story, solar powered, running water, satellite tv, leather sofas, everything you want high-roller-hideaways. With the drivers following, the rest of the crew rode out our last remaining energy storming the shacks, cutting around and even over some of them, and weaving through the many small islands surrounding the area.

With 80 degrees and bright sun, 20-24 mph steady wind, and late December water still warm enough to ride without wetsuits, a fall season expedition to The Fishing Shacks is well worth looking into. We hooked up boats and drivers from Air Padre Kiteboarding, loaded up 9m Ozone c4's, Wainman Hawaii Smokes, lunch, beer, and cameras, and took a crew consisting of team riders Brett Newcomb, Paul Sheetz, Monte Cantu, and special guests Teran Hughes and Kyle and Missy Lukey. A big thanks to Jeff Hoxtell and Air Padre Kiteboarding for making the trip possible and shooting some great pics! If your crew is ever interested in seeing another side of SPI, hooking up a trip to The Fishing Shacks with Air Padre Kiteboarding should be high on the list, but don't forget about the many other amazing places around South Padre Island, like Boca Chica, Mansfield, Ship Lanes, Holly Beach, and others, all well worth exploring.


Fishing Shacks Kiteboard Adventure

Brett Riding in the Channel Monte Throwing Down at Fishing Shacks Teran Boosting Near High Rise Fishing Shacks Sheetz Going for a Grab Brett Boosting in Steady South Winds Butter Flat Channel and Accompanying Mirror Lake

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Kiteboard Riding Spots on SPIKitesurfing PhotosKitesurfing Equipment


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