Heaven on Earth

Heaven on Earth

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Snow Kiting

Saturday we got up bright and early.  Usually we make a country weekend breakfast, but not today.  Today we had this...
And some of us had cold cereal.
We were in a hurry to get up the canyon above our town to watch this...

Our small town is in the SanPete valley (SanPete is a native-american name), which is surrounded

by two different mountain ranges.
We were on Skyline drive which goes for over 100 miles along the Wasatch plateau.  There are beautiful open bowls along the top.  Fishing, camping, hiking, snowmobiling, sledding, skiing and snowboarding (even though there are no lifts and people have to hike to the top) are some of the many outdoor activities done here. 

Today the snow kiters have usurped the snowmobilers from some of the bowls.  Every year the professional snow kite tour comes to Skyline for the SnowKite Master's race.  Snow Kiters come from all over the USA and other countries to participate in this elite race.  The most famous participant and premier snow kiter in the world is from Argentina.
These are some of the kites lined up and waiting to be inflated.  Small manual pumps inflate channels in the kites and then the riders rig themselves into harnesses connected to the kites.  Imagine rigging yourself into a harness connected to a small parachute and flying across the snow.

Unfortunately, the race for Saturday was postponed due to high wind.  The big kites that the Master riders use are way to large to safely launch in the 25 mile per hour winds that had kicked up so they were waiting for the wind to die down.  Meantime, the smaller kites came out and the free-riding took place.  There were about 50 riders on skis and snowboards just having fun.

    It takes a lot of strength to handle and maneuver those kites and boards.

These guys got away from the pack into a smaller, higher bowl so that they had room to fly.  Snow kiters can go as high as 100 feet in the air and as fast as 50 miles an hour on the snow in a good wind.

We didn't stay for the wind to die down.  Ironically, last year there was not enough wind the day we went to watch, so we didn't get to see that race either. What is it they say about feast of famine?
The elevation at the summit of Skyline trail is just over 9600 ft. above sea level and it was cold (23 degrees not counting the wind chill) so we didn't stay for the whole afternoon.
We went home to the valley and had salmon sandwiches for lunch. 

 All in all, it was a beautiful weekend. 


  1. Sounds like a wonderful day! Beautiful pictures.

    Lynda at bloombakecreate.com

  2. hi! so nice to meet you. your pictures are breathtaking! what a fun day!

  3. That is so cool! I have never heard of such a thing as snow kiting. Wonder if anybody in Iowa is doing this? Thanks for sharing!

  4. wow this is so cool and what a beautiful place, love your creme Anglais

  5. I've never heard of snow kiting. It looks beautiful in your pics!