Best wind direction: SW, S
Richmond is rideable on a S to SW wind and it can be quitegusty before large approaching storms. This site has its own iKitesurf sensorand is fairly accurate on the wind speeds but the direction has been disabledfor some time now. The Washington State Ferry readings of Edmonds – Kingstonare also a good indicator of the current conditions through that area of theSound. As long as the sound is blowing S or SW the direction at Richmond shouldbe rideable but beware of SW winds creating a very on-shore condition. Look fora S or SW forecast on the Puget Sound NOAA marine forecast. It will often blowon a 10-20 forecast, but 15-25 is ideal. The wind direction is side toside-onshore with a long beach making this a good location for those kitersstill learning to stay upwind. North winds are not ideal here as the beach isshadowed from this direction.
Tides will affect the water conditions often creating choppyterrain with rising swell as the wind increases or turns more onshore. A strongebb current (water moving N) can make staying up wind a challenge but a strongflood current can make for some fun waves to ride so be sure and monitor tidesand currents at this location. A tide below 9ft is the safest allowing plentyof sand between obstacles and water. Higher tides are possible from the smallsand hill just south of the foot path but please use caution when launching andlanding here and beware of driftwood.
Rig and Launch:
The best rigging area is the small sandy hill mentionedabove allowing enough room for a hand-full of kites. The safest technique is tolaunch the kite at the water’s edge with the kiter up on the sand with a holddown due to the possible unexpected gusts. Please avoid “up and over” launchesat Richmond—this is a site to observe the rule “stay low and go.” It is also agood idea to body drag out one line-length from shore before riding away foradded safety.
Richmond hosts large bathrooms with flushing toilets in boththe parking lot and on the beach. There is a surplus of parking stalls soparking is never an issue.
Warnings: Richmond Beach is a public park and can be very busy attimes so please be aware and considerate of beach goers and dogs. The beach isan off-leash beach from November through April. This is also a beach with afair amount of drift wood and large logs so be aware while launching andlanding. Constantly monitor changes in the winds here as they can increasequickly and turn more onshore creating difficult and gusty conditions. Squallsoften roll in to RB. Keep an eye out. Get your kite landed before they arrive. Notethat this beach is steep making it too deep to stand once in the water. Thereis usually a shore break that you must body drag through. The beach is coveredwith rocks and barnacles. There are two sections of old pilings and otherdebris west of the Restrooms. These pilings become submerged as the tide comesin so be extremely careful of this area. Along the beach, there are busy traintracks just north and just south of the main small launch area –within a kite-linelength of the high tide shore. Be confident in your deep water self-rescueskills.
It is your responsability to check whether kitesurfing is allowed at the spot; you might need a 'special permit' or membership from a local kite organization, etc. Local rules can change. Respect others - kiters or not; kite safely and enjoy the wind!
- Windy days*:
- Wind Direction:
- Av. Wind Speed (knts):
- Kite Season:
- Av. Temperature:
* with min. 4 bft (12 knt) wind, without thermal wind stats
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