We’ve been enjoying Sal for years, and even though variety sometimes calls for a change, this is one clinic spot that pulls us, and to be honest a lot of you, back every year. It’s just over 5 hours from the UK, over the years it’s really delivered on the wind and wave front, and is still kicking off when our european waters are at their coldest, win-win all the way. If you’ve never been, Sal is part of the Cape Verde archipeligo, which sits in the North Atlantic off the west coast of Africa and about 1000 miles south of the Canaries. This as you can no doubt imagine places it smack bang in the path of the NE trades and plenty of swell, with the windiest months being December through to April.
We spend our time at the inappropriately named Shark Bay, on the east coast of the island. The water here is heavenly turquoise inviting and even during the winter months a shorty easily does the job. The long beach is backed by dunes, and with the wind blowing cross-onshore from the left it is a relatively safe spot. Submerged about 100m offshore lies the reef which throws up a very mellow wave. On the inside of the reef the water is flat to choppy depending on the tide, and in between the waves you’ve got flatter sections. Although this is by no means a flat water spot, it is an outstanding playground for practicing most of what is possible in kitesurfing. If you tire of jumping, spinning, kite looping and freestyle, you can just hit some stunt ramps or start wiggling on the waves. If you get it wrong the waves just push you into the flat water where you can sort yourself out and then try again – pure joy. We leads us nicely onto the fact that Shark Bay is an outstanding place to hone your surfboard skills, hero waves, beautiful but with little consequence for you or your precious kit.
Each day we take a couple of pick-ups from the hotel to the beach, which takes less than 10 minutes. We organize a lunchtime pickup for any one needing a break from the elements or a large plate of food to refuel!
Kit wise here over the years we have used everything from 12m down to 7m. The water is warm, but if the clouds roll over it can get a tad chilly in boardies or a bikini, so a shorty is advisable. If you burn really easily, not forgetting that your skin won’t have seen sun for a few months, a long legged suit or some stylish pyjamas could be a wise choice.
Due to the nature of the spot we do recommend that you are happy re-launching your kite and can happily ride upwind. You’ll have 6 full days of full on coaching with demos, simulator sessions, and all the usual fun, group motivation and video analysis. What’s unique here is the elevated view we get from filming atop the dunes, so the camera can see every single detail. We will cover everything that you can dream of attempting on a twin tip, including: Jumping, Popping, Kitelooping, Downlooping, Unhooking. AND
Strapped and Strapless Waveriding. We intend to take you through the learning progression of riding and trimming and setting up a surfboard, carving, catching waves, gybing and tacking and even some air! If you have a wave board bring it along. We will have a couple of Cabrinha beautiers to try.
This year we’re moving over to the Melia Tortuga, which is a small and compact resort just upwind of the famous Punta Preta Wave spot. The resort is made up of rooms, apartments and small houses, with no marathon hikes from one side to the other. There is something for everyone and it is possible to organise single rooms. An all-inclusive ticket is purchased for the week, so no need to worry about food or the odd tipple. There are a few restaurants to choose from but the real beauty is that we won’t have to put up with the long waits the town has become famous for. Facilities are what you’d expect of a high star resort, such as pools, spa, gym, fridges, sat TV etc. It is possible to kite in front of the hotel, but as the wind is gusty cross-offshore, and rescue is more expensive than a premiership footballer, the conditions at Shark Bay are far more suited to learning/trying/crashing!
Depending on whether you share an all inclusive package, opt for an apartment with others prices start from £1260 all in.
Extras will be daily transfers, approx €35 each for the week and sports kit excess on the flight.
If you would like to join us from outside the UK please get in contact for our land based option.
To reserve your place we’ll need a £200 deposit. If you have any questions fling us a mail or phone on +44 7729 183233.