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Kitelandboarding for the King of Jordan:


 

Kitelandboarding for the King!

Kite Landboarding
Looking over Amman

 

 

Kite ATB
Petra Treasury

 

 

Kite Mountainboarding
Flying over the arena

 


Kite All-Terrain Boarding
Flying through the dust trails

 

 

Kite ATB Moves
Enjoying the sun

 

 

Kite Landboard Tricks
Putting a show on for the King

 

Grouped together in a darkened waiting area - a lonely airport attendant decides to start a conversation, "So where are you flying out to?", "Amman, Jordan" I replied. "Holiday or business?" "It's the King's birthday and he has invited a few of his friends over and we are putting on a show" "Wow! What are you doing?" "Flying kites" I replied coyly. Then I realised what I'd said. At last, Kites are cool, so cool and good to watch that you can be invited around the world by supporters or even Kings to see them, times are changing!

 

Touching down at Amman at midnight it was still 20°c yet back home in the UK it was below zero!

 

The news before we got to Jordan was it would be light winds and soft sand terrain. This is any kite all-terrain boarders worst fear. Fortunately, within ten miles of being outside the capital we were assessing it differently even in the middle of the night the terrain was looking rideable, I was starting to buzz.

 

Everyone was keen to get going next morning, we were picked up to go to the festival which was over 200 miles away in Aqaba. Amongst the group was Peter Lynn, the legend himself, for those who don't know he's the guy from NZ that activated traction kiting in many parts of the world including the UK. Arriving fashionably late he is just in time for the four hour journey to follow his 60 hour flight!

 

En route there is a change of plan. The festival day for the King and his VIP's would be changed so today we would just have to be tourists. Well, we guessed if you are the King you can have a kite festival whichever day you prefer! Either way again we turn out winners and end up as tourists at Petra.

 

This is the treasury temple that was used in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade with Sean Connery as Indy's father - you couldn't help singing the theme tune when you arrived at the main treasury. What an epic sight and without doubt one of the most spectacular sights in the world. If you get the chance - go and see it.

 

Aqaba is a great city. Overlooking the gulf of Jordan you can see both Israel and Eqypt. The other way was neighbouring Iraq and despite the thoughts of an up and coming war the blasting sun and good winds made you think of no better place to be.

 

Close to sunset we arrived for a quick reconnaissance of the arena managing to get a few blasts across the sandstone flats. Curious locals turned out to see a preview of the weekend's event and between us we even managed to get workers and security guards to pause for a break!

 

Next day and It's Showtime! The expected thousands actually showed putting the pressure on to sharpen up and perform.

The crowd was already aware of how powerful big kites were as Peter Lynn had just lost his huge 30ft manta ray inflatable in the sea but until now most hadn't seen kitelandboarding.

 

The King of Jordan arrived just in time for the performance (on his yacht in the bay). With Alex Tritten kitesurfing on the water and our group on our boards we were managing to get some cheers from the crowds.


When I launched my kite with board already on my feet I manage a huge 30m power slide towards the kite leaving a trail of dust behind me which ultimately caught back up with me. I'd recently been working on some flatland tricks which felt even better with the dust swirling.


As always the big jumps stole the show and looking at the amazed and smiling faces clearly everyone was enjoying the event. Again there was that realisation that something else can be done with kites. The only weird thing we couldn't understand was why the Jordanians were huddling together and blowing on their hands - they were cold!!!! 25 degrees is winter over here!!!

 

Jordan is a fantastic country that has some really good sites and even though kiting is really new, the introduction has been made and we were all glad to be part of it. All together - a fantastic festival and a country that I will no doubt visit again in the future to ride the fantastic Wadi Rum desert - 200 miles of cliffs, berms and dropoffs that will keep any all-terrain boarder entertained for life!


Words: Dan Eaton (Powerkiteshop)

Photography by Dan Eaton, Tim Burgess and Alex Tritten


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