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Farewell 2020: Kitesurfing The Pandemic Year in Kuwait

The year 2020 is folding so quickly with many events and scenes in our memories to remember. I wouldn’t say it felt like 8 hours, but certainly it felt much less than a year, with so many changes happening so fast. My experience with kitesurfing this year, just like almost everything else, got disturbed by the pandemic from ban on traveling, lockdowns, closed borders, social distancing, and curfews. Indeed the pandemic year was a disruption and discomfort to many lives by its uncertainty, ambiguity, and novelty. But as the vaccine is underway now, I hope the year 2021 comes with comfort and normalcy, and I hope we are settling in a better place.

Sunset from Failaka Island, East of Kuwait City, a kitesurfing spot yet to be discovered

Toward the beginning of the year I was on my way to join the Redbull Ragnarok snowkiting race in Norway, when the ban on traveling started to be imposed globally. Prior to the race in 10 days, the Norwegian health authorities banned all sports events and subsequently the Redbull Ragnarok was canceled. Eventually I stranded in Munich’s lockdown for a couple of weeks of uncertainty and ambiguity, until I got a flight back home. Arriving to Kuwait while traveling is still banned, forced the opportunity to spend the summer in Kuwait and get a full experience on Al Bawarih winds on Subiya Lagoon North of Kuwait City. In 2020, I found Al-Bawarih season as the most significant kitesurfing season in Kuwait, though its extremely hot, yet it is very windy. During Al-Bawarih season this year many new riders have joined the community thanks to the local kite instructors who continued to teach kitesurfing during the summer.

The Kitesurfing Days..

About two years ago I started to collect simple data on my kitesurfing sessions in Kuwait such as; spot name, wind direction, kite size, and date. Along side the data collected, I started the to write about the experience and the conditions on different kitesurfing spots. I believe gathering such information helps nourishing and flourishing the kitesurfing community in Kuwait.

During the year 2020 I got 210 days that I spent in Kuwait, not in quarantine, traveling, nor lockdown. Out of the 210 days, there were 66 days of kitesurfing, with the bulk of these days in June, July, and August; Aka Summer or Al-Bawarih season. During these months wind comes about 2 to 3 days per week, specially on Subiya Lagoon. In fact, I only visit Subiya Lagoon when the forecast is showing wind over 15 knots, I don’t observe every day, thus I’m not sure about the wind and kite conditions on days that have shown less wind forecast; there is a probability that these days could have more wind than forecasted.

In total, I was kitesurfing in Subiya for 31 days out of 66 kiting days, and Dubaiya was second with 21 days. I prefer usually going to Dubaiya when the wind is good on the south coast because of its proximity of 30 minutes drive from Kuwait City, accessibility to the beach, and clarity of the water. Yet toward the end of 2020, the community has discovered a new spot in Nuwaiseeb on the very south coast. Though Nuwaiseeb is almost 60 minutes additional drive from Dubaiya, yet the conditions sometimes are worth the extra ride.

Spring 2020 wild flowers around Kuwait

The Insights ..

While collecting data on the windy days in 2019, I had gap months of March, April, July, and September, where I didn’t spend much time in Kuwait to kitesurf. In 2020 I was able to spend more time in Kuwait and kite during most of the periods that I missed in the previous year. Yet March and April 2020 both months happened to be still poor in data. For the available collected data in 2019 and 2020, I came with the conclusion that January, June, July, and August, are the most windy months in Kuwait. During these months the chance to go kitesurfing is more than 10 days per month, compared to about 6 days per month for almost the rest year. The month with the least wind is September, which coincides with Suhail season where season changes, humidity increases, and wind drops significantly. To put the finding into perspective, I created the following chart with my estimated kiting days per the calendar months, locally known seasons, dominant wind direction, and the kite size I frequently used.

Summary chart on kitesurfing during different months of the year based on personal experience in 2019 and 2020

* Spots south of Kuwait City; Dubaiya, Bnaider, Khiran, Nuwaiseeb

** Different season names as known locally by meteorologists and astronomers with deviations in some names

The summary and conclusions on the chart above are only based on the collected data from 134 kitesurfing days during the past two years with the absence of several months each year. Thus with more data collected in the coming years these conclusions could change. In general, the decision on which spot to kite on or which kite size to use depends on the wind forecast of the given day and actual wind conditions on the spot.

The Blog ..

For the the year 2020 was fruitful with more coverage on kitesurfing spots in Kuwait, with more understanding of the local wind system and different kitesurfing conditions on the coastal line, in addition coverage on El Gouna and the Red Sea Islands. The quarantining periods helped in adding a section on the blog for posts in Arabic language, بالعربي, to reach more readers from the region; with few posts published so far and hopefully more to come in 2021. Overall, the year was generous with meeting new wonderful people around the kitesurfing community. I hope the year 2021 comes easy and happy to everyone, to be free of fear and quarantine, and more wind and kitesurfing adventures, and I hope by March I will be able to do the Redbull Ragnarok snowking race. Happy new year!

Videos from 2020

Kitesurfing Subiya, Summer 2020
Kitesurfing El Gouna, November 2020
Snowkiting Obertauern, March 2020

Photos from 2020

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Nuwaiseeb: a hidden kitesurfing paradise on Kuwait-Saudi Borders

While all borders have been closed by health authorities in Kuwait about a week ago, I got to cross borders and kite on the water between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia on Christmas day. The kite session on the very south shore of Kuwait with side-shore winds blowing from the North was very thrilling, as any accident could drift one downwind crossing Kuwait-Saudi’s borders.

When I returned from El Gouna earlier this month, and after finishing my two weeks of house quarantine, I got a call from Abdulaziz Albanna, athlete and kite instructor, telling me about the newly discovered spot on the very south end of Nuwaiseeb ‘ النويصيب ‘, about 110 km south of Kuwait City, and 1.5km north of Kuwait-Saudi‘s border. Nuwaiseeb is known for its shallow water and sandbanks appearing during low-tide.

Abdulaziz Albanna kiting on Nuwaiseeb beach

The spot is one of my favorite spots so far I have been to it  twice already, a day on a South East  wind, and the recent day was on North North West wind direction. On both directions the spot was amazing, but maybe some of cons are that during high-tide the beach gets narrower to launch and land kites comfortably. and the area is full of ruins and rocks on the shoreline, in addition to the piles of trash that people leave behind. during both days three kites got ripped while parked on the beach because of the waste and rocks all over the shore. But this won’t stop us from kiting there, maybe  we will be adding a new warm up activity and start  cleaning up the area more.

Only during the peak of the high-tide that the shoreline gets narrower, for the rest of the day, the water drifts away from the beach, and it becomes an easier and smoother kite setup experience.

The shallow-water area goes more than 1 km into the sea, and the depth of the water varies from 3 to 4 ft during high-tide, and about 1 ft during low-tide. Compared to Dubaiya, from my experience of kitesurfing there, the depth in Dubiaya is generally more, and especially during high-tide, it gets deeper than 6 feet all the way to the shore, which makes the water very choppy. On the contrary, in Nuwaiseeb, even during the high-tide, there is a plenty of flat water spots and more comparable to the conditions of spots like Tawila Island and Ashrafi islands on the Red Sea. I find Nuwaiseeb as one of the most beautiful kitesurfing spots in Kuwait, with clear water, sand bottom, and vast space of flat and glassy water. Kitesurfing in Nuwaiseb during high-tide or low-tide can be equally beautiful and fun.

Getting There..

Reaching the spot in Nuwaiseeb is not hard at all. It’s about an hour and a half ride from Kuwait city, with only the last 1 km off road. The off road track is very decent and probably any car could reach to the spot on the beach by following the track. The spot is located in an abandoned house on the beach surrounded with trees and plenty of space to park. It is also common to see other people having a picnic around the area or motor bikers passing by.

On different wind directions, the spot will have different favorability. I would certainly favor the south wind direction, to prevent the risk of crossing borders, specially for beginner riders. The other direction that could work is the North North West as the wind blows side shore. However, with NNW direction, I should be careful and have enough buffer for drifting down wind as end Kuwait-Saudi border is only 1.5 km away.

Thank you for reading. I wish you happy holidays and a wonderful new year.

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The Duotone Pro Center at El Gouna

One of the spots that I got the chance to kite at in El Gouna is the Duotone Pro Center, which has recently opened at the Casa Cook El Gouna hotel.

Duotone Pro Center

The Casa Cook hotel is one of the newest and recently opened five stars hotel and resort at El Gouna. The hotel was inaugurated back in January of this year, but then due to the COVID-19 circumstances, the kite center was not operating till recently in October when it officially launched.

The Duotone Pro Center is run by Mohammad Abdulrahman, one of Egypt’s kitesurfing pioneers and champions. The center is well organized in terms of storage, store, and resting area. The center is also located on one of El Gouna secret and hidden natural lagoons. Launching from the spot gives the option of kiting in the open water and the lagoon, though the lagoon is very shallow during low tide. Yet, during high tide the lagoon is definitely one of the best places to kite in El Gouna.

Mohammed Abdulrahman and kite instructor Marcuis
Pro rider Nathalie Lambrech practicing at the lagoon in September 2020 with boats in the back anchoring at Bayout sandbank

While at the beach the wind is side-on, the wind on the tip of the lagoon/sand bank, comes right off-shore, making the water flat and glassy. It is also common to see more riders coming downwind or upwind from other kite stations to enjoy the lagoon’s super conditions.

Being a Duotone Pro Center, obviously all the rental gear and store products are coming from Duotone and other brands from the mother company Boards & More. Also since the station is part of the five stars hotel Casa Cook, the prices are relatively higher than other kite station, in terms of storage and rental.

Generally speaking, the station here is very convenient for who likes to stay at the hotel and enjoy the accessibility to the beach from bed, or access to the bed from the beach. It’s very coinvent to take naps between sessions, indeed it helps a lot in progression. I would consider coming back to the station whenever I’m staying at the hotel, otherwise, I find it more convenient to kite from other stations. The access to the beach at the Duotone Pro Center is a bit of a long walk compared to easy and quick access at other stations.

Media from the spot and hotel

Kite-Safari and Bigdayz fun on the Red Sea

Kite-safari is a unique kitesurfing experience that one can do while on the Red Sea. The kite-safari is suitable for all levels of riders from fresh students to pro riders. It gives the opportunity to explore different kitesurfing conditions and spots. And more importantly, kite-safari is sporty camp, and significantly can drive progress in kitesurfing.

Kite Safari

Last week I got an invite from Marco Koppel, the father of kite-safari in Egypt and founder of Bigdayz Kite-safari, to join their safari boat and start hopping around the islands of the Red Sea. On the early morning of the first day, Marco and his boat anchored near Bayout sand bank, about 3 km away from El Gouna. And by 7 am, I was with other 5 riders on two zodiac boats heading from El Gouna to the safari boat Merselia.

On the zodiac from El Gouna to Merselia

The ride on the zodiac was quick but quite rough, the wind was already blowing over 30 knots, and the waves were at least 2 meters high, we definitely got socked in water by the time we reached the boat. As soon as we reached the safari boat, the boat started heading toward Tawila Island, while breakfast was being served in the dining hall. The boat ride from El Gouna to Tawila Island takes about an hour and half to two hours till getting anchored near the island.

We got to spend four days on Merselia with a fun group of 18 other riders who all share the passion for kitesurfing, exploring, and adventures. Every morning before sunrise, the riders are up drinking their coffee and getting ready to launch their kites from the island. Everyday on the boat is a day full of kitesurfing and sport, I believe most of the people on the boat were doing three sessions everyday. And by dinner time everybody is worn out and ready to sleep like a baby. Even though we tried to party on the boat, yet these parties never last late. People start to crash and pass out by 8 pm every night. I kind of enjoyed the early bird vibes on the boat as it sort of suits my sleeping cycle. Meanwhile, being engaged with kitesurfing for the full day, drives progress significantly, and gives the opportunity to practice new tricks and improve technicality, specially when you have experienced kitesurfer on board like Marco Koppel. I must also mention that when I started kitesurfing 4 years ago, I was only able to go upwind and ride properly during my first kite-safari trip with Salty Sports in 2017.

Tawila Island

By 10 am on the first day we were already anchoring near the kite spot on Tawila Island and loading our kites and gear on the zodiacs to head to the island. The spot on Tawila is probably one of the best kite spots in terms of flat water, sandy beach, and off shore wind. The wind was blowing over 30 knots. The Tawila kite spot is the popular and a more attractive spot for a kite safari, it gets crowded very quickly. And perhaps one of the downsides to Tawila Island is that once it gets crowded, kiting on the flat water becomes chaotic and risky a bit. By the afternoon of the same day there was already 3 other safari boats on the island and perhaps over 20 kites on the water.

Catching an off shore dark slide on Tawila Kite Spot

I personally prefer kiting on Tawila when there are no more than 3 or 4 other kites, and usually this happens during breakfast and lunch hours, as most riders go back to their boats to eat their meals. I choose to kite during these times with max 4 other riders.

Jeysum Island

On the second day of the safari, we started with an early morning session on Tawila Island. By breakfast time all the riders returned to the boat as the boat started to heading toward Jeysum Island. The ride from Tawila to Jeysum takes about an hour on the boat to an hour and half till the boat get anchored. Actually, anchoring the boats near the island is quite a process. Usually the Safari boat get 4 anchoring ropes, and to anchor each rope, the crew need to search for the anchoring spots, then dive, in scuba gear, with the rope to connect to the anchor.

Ahmed Sukkar on the zodiac returning from Jeysum kite spot

There are two kite spots on Jeysum Island that I’m familiar with. One is on the south west corner, the jetty, and the other one is on the south east corner. On this trip we stayed on the south east corner of Jeysum, and luckily we were the only safari boat near the spot. The spot on the island is very flat, off shore, and sandy bottom, however the stretch of the beach here is a bit shorter than Tawila and more coral reefs surrounding the spot. The wind was awesome, blowing over 20 knots and I went out on my 10 sqm Evo. We spent the night near Jeysum Island, and on the following morning, after an early session, our boat started heading toward Ashrafi Islands.

Ashrafi Islands

We reach Ashrafi Islands by noon on our third day. The ride from Jeysum to Ashrafi takes about an hour and a half. And Ashrafi is a chain of islands that are connected through reef and shallow water, with a lagoon in the middle. Our boat anchored in the middle of a lagoon between two of the islands, and facing the shallow water and the reef. We used one of the near islands to setup and launch our kites. The wind always blows from the North direction on this region of the Red Sea, so we were kiting side shore to the island, through the lagoon, and near the boat.

Kiting around Ashrafi islands is probably the most scenic with the most variation of blue and turquois colors that satisfy and please the eyes. Kiting cross the lagoon and between the islands also gives variety of conditions of water surface and wind as the gust makes a difference on different spots around the islands. The spot is probably the most convenient for students to practice and learn, the area is quite spacious and kites are always well spread around the islands. All the fresh students were able to ride upwind while we were around the Ashrafi islands. By noon on the of fourth day we were getting ready to head back toward Hurghada after spending full morning kiting around the scenic Ashrafi islands. The ride from Ashrafi Islands back to Hurghada took us about 3 hours and before sunset we were back anchored on the mainland.

The Safari Boat

The safari boat is our home during the trip. The boat is fully prepared to host all riders and crew during the period of the safari. This trip happens to be my third kite safari trip on the Red Sea, and from this boat and previous experiences, I would say the kite-safari boats are very similar but with variations in quality depending on the boat. The boat usually would have 12 to 15 sleeping cabins with private toilets, living area, and different open air seating areas.

The crew on the boat are quite helpful, and they take care of all the operations on the boat and the islands. We had two zodiacs that transfer riders to the island and help to rescue riders while on the water. The rescue zodiacs are essential specially to fresh students as it helps the students to continue practicing without the worry of drifting away or go far downwind. While on the kite-safari, all riders need to do is get themselves on the water, everything else is taken care of.

Nasty on the boat

The beside the crew on the boat, we were accompanied by kitesurfing instructors, professional photographer, massage specialist, and the chef on board. Our chef on board Hasan everyday prepares three meals and gets creative in making variant food options during the safari trip. While Nasty, Gerona Nastic, our professional photo and videographer was taking every possible moment to capture with her camera. Most of the photos I’m sharing on the post actually are coming from her. Marian is the message specialist at Makani Beach Club, and I was quite happy to find out that she was also joining us on the boat. After long day and long sessions on the water, the body needs to be relived and relaxed in order to be able to continue on the next day. And indeed having a massage specialist on board helps a lot in getting ready for kiting everyday.

Overall, the four days on the safari boat passed really quick. We were lucky to have wind on everyday, and kite everyday. My friends who joined on this trip for the first time got super stocked by the experience, and I believe everyone of us wants to do it again. I hope by early April next year I come back to Egypt and join another kite-safari.

More From Kite Safari with Bigdayz

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El Gouna Kite Mania 2020 at Makani Beach Club

During the last weekend I got the opportunity, finally, to participate in a kitesurfing competition in 2020, and probably the biggest kitesurfing event amidst the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. From November 5th to November 7th, Makani Beach Club hosted El Gouna Kite Mania 2020 competition in El Gouna. The competition was full of excitement and fun, with over 50 riders coming from all different spots in Egypt and different countries.

The event was well organized and the wind worked to make it fun for the riders and the spectators. The competition was on five different categories of which three categories in Big-air and two categories in racing. The Big-air competition was based on 60% for the height of the rider jump, and 40% on style and technique, and the categories were divided into women, men expert, and men advanced riders. While the racing categories were in Slalom and Speed races.

The first day of the Kite Mania, the Big Air Style competition took place for women and men experts. The day started with early morning with a brief from the judges on the rules and competition agenda. The wind started building up slowly during the day from 15 knots to 20 knots, riders were on 9m to 14m kites. The local Gouni rider Noussa Denkler pulled some real big-air style in the women competition that earned her the first place. On the second part of the day, the men’s Expert Big-Air competition started, and it was a great show and fascinating performance by the pro riders and champions on the water. On the final, the young and rising riders Ahmed Kite and Abdu Eid where competiting with the big-air champions Mostafa Abbas and Hussain Ali Eldien. Indeed all the riders have put a great show, and Abdu Eid from Dahab was able to take the first place for the men’s expert big-air.

Taymor, Poppos, (..), Ahmad Kite, and Ali (Photo from Niklas Funk)

The second day of the event, the wind started to pick up by 10:30 am. The day started with the two races, where the Flysurfer rider Lucas Vogeltanz from the Czech Republic finished in the first place on both races. Following the races, the wind started to reach 20 knots and the men’s advanced big-air competition started. I was anticipating this category of the competition as I sign-up for it. I got to perform well on my first heat and to qualify to the second round. The heats were ten minutes and consisted of four rider that are performing high jump simultaneously. Riding during those ten minutes could more intense as it requires coordination between the riders in timing the jumps while keeping focus on performance during the same time. The advanced big-air competition had 24 riders, and the heats continued till sunset. Abdo Alnos from Ras Sidr pulled the best big-air style in the advanced category for men and won the first place.

Men expert champions Ahmed Kite, Abdo Eid, and Mostafa Abbas

The event concluded on the third day with barbeque for riders and participants followed by a ceremony celebrating the competition’s champions. Overall, the three days of the event were full of excitement and experience. The event organizers, Makani team, the riders, and the pleasant weather all made the event a great success. I look forward for the next edition of El Gouna Kite Mania.

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The Peaceful El Gouna

I hope this post works as an introduction to kitesurfing at el Gouna, Red Sea, Egypt. I like to consider el Gouna as a second home spot for me as I have been visiting the town repetitively in the past 3 years.

El Gouna is a fun and convenient destination for kitesurfing. The town is properly developed and relatively new, with variety of options for kitesurfing, accommodations, food, and nightlife. I find el Gouna very welcoming with friendly people from diverse backgrounds and heritage.

El Gouna is located on the Red Sea about 25 km from Hurghada International Airport. Usually the ride from the airport to the accommodation in El Gouna takes 30 minutes. Hurghada International Airport has many direct flights to several European cities, and multiple flights a day to and from Cairo airport, and I find the transit at Cairo International Airport is quite smooth and easy. Meanwhile, with the current COVID-19 regulations, a negative PCR certificate is required to get into Egypt.

Getting around El Gouna is quite easy, the tuctuc service is always available for transportation. The town has two main centers for restaurants and nightlife; the marina and the downtown. I found more good restaurants at the downtown and more fun nightlife at the marina.

Not Only Kitesurfing

El Gouna is rich with activities and not limited to kitesurfing. On the non-windy days there are plenty of alternative activities to do, like standup paddling (SUP), horse riding, snorkeling, scuba diving, cable park, or go on a boat trip to Bayout sandbank. I like to go out standup paddling from the Club House at the downtown, located on the lagoon and close to the open water. The ride on the lagoons from the Club House is quite scenic and gives the opportunity to explore El Gouna Lagoons.

The Wind

El Gouna is windy all year long, with peak wind season from April to October. Yet temperatures during summer gets really hot from June to August, though the wind is good, the summer heat on non windy days gets really irritating. After visiting El Gouna on different times of the year, my personal preference is to visit El Gouna on April, May, September, and October. Usually during these months, the wind is pumping and the climate is pleasant.

On average the wind blows between 15 to 20 knots, with less days of above 25 knots. When visiting el Gouna, I take my 8m, 10m, and 12m kites. For the past month or so I have mostly used the 10m kite. A wetsuit would be necessary depending on the time of the year, but definitely from June to September it’s not needed.

Kite Stations

There many options for kitesurfing at El Gouna, either on the beach of one of the kite stations or take a boat trip to Tawila Island or one of the other near by islands. The kite stations provide variety of services to kitesurfers, beside the help on the beach with setting up, launching, and landing the kites. The stations also offers food, drinks, beside kite rental, repair, kite school, and great atmosphere to hang around between sessions.

The kite stations that I have been visiting the most, during my current stay in el Gouna are Makani Beach Club and Element Water Sports. I like the spot on both stations, and they are walking-distance from each other. Alternating between both stations gives a wider menu selection for food, and a change of vibes. On November 5th there will be kitesurfing competition at Makani Beach Club. On my previous visits I used to go kiting from the Kiteboarding Club (KBC). The KBC was closed during since March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and it has just reopened during the last week of October.

Kitesurfing on the islands

Kitesurfing on the islands is quite fun, Usually the kite stations offer a weekly trip to Tawila Island or other near by islands, depending on the wind conditions. It is also popular to go out for a whole week on a boat for kite-safari, where usually the boat stops on multiple islands during the week. The kite safari trips are quite common on the Red Sea, and usually are organized by kite schools, which makes it a good opportunity to learn kitesurfing real quickly.

Kite Safari with the Kite Junkies and the Wind Seekers, April 2019

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Kitesurfing around el Gouna

رياح البوارح على خور الصبية

رياضة الكايت سيرف في موسم البوارح

مع نهاية شهر مايو ، رفعت السلطات الصحية الكويتية الحظر الشامل ، وغيرت الاجراءات الاحترازية بالكارونا إلى حظر التجول الجزئي الذي يسمح للأشخاص بالتنقل والحركة داخل الكويت. جاء رفع الحظر في الوقت المناسب مع تغير المواسم في الكويت، نهاية موسم السرايات والسبّق، وبداية موسم البوارح من يونيو وحتى منتصف يوليو. ومنذ رفع الحظر، أتيحت لي الفرصة للكايت سيرف في عدة مواقع في الكويت، بين الشواطئ الجنوبية في الضباعية، وبنيدر ، والخيران ،كما في الشواطئ الشمالية على خور الصبية.

موسم البوارح معروف محلياً بالموسم الذي تهب فيه رياح الصيف الساخنة والجافة من الشمال الغربي، وهو احد مواسم الطقس المتعارف عليها قديما عند أهل المنطقة. يرتبط معنى اسم البوارح بحركة منازل النجوم في سماء المنطقة، مثل نجم الثريا ونجم الجوزاء، خلال هذه الفترة من السنة وما يصاحبها من تغيرات في الطقس، ويعود استخدام الاسم عند أهل المنطقة منذ الازمنة القديمة، فينقل عن الاصمعي شاعر البصرة في العصر العباسي قوله: أيا بارح الجوزاء مالك لا ترى، عيالك قد امسوا مراميل جوعًا، وهو يشير الى رياح البوارح في فصل الصيف وكيف كان لصوص الإبل يستغلون هذه الرياح للسرقة واخفاء الاثر.

 ينقل الخبير الفلكي المحلي عادل المرزوق ، إن موسم البوارح يتداول محليًا بين سكان الجزء الشمالي الشرقي من شبه الجزيرة العربية ، بما في ذلك الكويت وجنوب العراق وقطر ونجد والمنطقة الشرقية في المملكة العربية السعودية. ويشتهر موسم البوارح بالرياح الشمال غربية، والتي عادة ما تشتد سرعتها مع ارتفاع درجات الحرارة خلال ساعات النهار، وتكون في بعض الأحيان محملة بالغبار والاتربة. ويذكر السيد عادل المرزوق أن السفن الشراعية في السابق كانت تتوقف عن الإبحار في هذا الموسم، فيعرف موسم البوارح عند أهل مدينة الكويت بإسم موسم الغلاق ، فخلال هذه الفترة تتوقف الحركة الملاحية التجارية ورحلات الغوص بسبب العواصف والرياح الشديدة. وتسمى الرياح في موسم البوارح أيضا بالسموم ، نظرًا لشدة حرارتها وجفافها. تنتقل رياح السموم عبر صحراء بلاد ما بين النهرين قبل الوصول إلى الكويت ، مما يزيد من فرصها في حمل رمال الصحراء وإحداث العواصف الرملية. خلال موسم البوارح يمكن أن تصل سرعة رياح السموم  إلى أكثر من 25 عقدة، مما يجعلها فرصة مناسبة جدًا للتعلم وممارسة رياضة الكايت سيرف والرياضات الأخرى التي تعتمد على الرياح.

تشرح محررة الأرصاد الجوية على موقع طقس العرب أريج الديحاني كيف تنتج رياح البوارح من انخفاض الضغط الجوي فوق صحراء شبه الجزيرة العربية بسبب ارتفاع درجات الحرارة  وارتفاع الضغط الجوي فوق البحر المتوسط، فتتكون التيارات الهوائية من الشمال الغربي لشبه الجزيرة العربية.

يقع خور الصبية في الركن الشمال الغربي من الخليج العربي، مما يجعله أول مسطح مائي تصل إليه رياح البوارح بعد السفر عبر الصحاري الساخنة. ومن خلال متابعتي لحركة الرياح خلال السنوات الثلاث الماضية، كان واضحًا أن الرياح الشمالية الغربية في الكويت تأتي نسبيًا بسرعة اكثر على خور الصبية مقارنةً ببقية شواطئ الكويت. ومنذ صيف 2019،وبعد إفتتاح جسر الشيخ جابر من ميناء شويخ الى الصبية، بدأت مع مجموعة من رياضيين الكايت سيرف في الكويت باستكشاف ممارسة الرياضة على خور الصبية​​، ومن خلال ممارسة الكايت سيرف على شواطئ الصبية لموسمين متتاليين، ممكن القول ان خلال موسم البوارح ، يمكننا ممارسة الكايت سيرف من يومين إلى ثلاثة أيام في الأسبوع ، مقابل يوم أو يومين في الأسبوع على شواطئ جنوب مدينة الكويت .

منذ رفع الحظر الشامل في الكويت مع بداية شهر يونيو 2020، نشط مجتمع الكايت سيرف في خور الصبية، وبدأ مدرب الكايت سيرف المحلي يعقوب النصرالله من مدرسة كويت كايت بوردنغ بإعطاء دروس في خور الصبية، وتمكن بالفعل اكثر من طالب من تعلم الكايت سيرف وممارسة الكايت على خور الصبية. والجدير بالذكر ان ايضًا المدرب عبدالعزيز البنا نجح في تدريب مجموعة اخرى من الطلبة على السواحل الجنوبية في مينا عبدالله، فيمكن القول ان موسم البوارح هذا العام كان موسم خير على ممارسين الرياضة في الكويت. يفترض ان تستمر الرياح المتقطعة بعد موسم البوارح، خلال موسم المرزم وجمرة القيظ، إلى موسم سهيل في نهاية اغسطس حيث تنقطع الرياح.

للإطلاع أكثر على البوارح

الدكتور عبدالله المسند، رياح البوارح واثرها في إثارة العواصف الرملية شرقي المملكة العربية السعودية، 46 صفحة، 2010.

البوارح.. موسم القيظ والرياح ونضج الثمار

للقراءة عن الكايت سيرف

صور من الصبية

Al-Bawarih ‘البوارح’ Winds on Subiya Lagoon

Summer season kitesurfing in Kuwait and the hot-blow winds

Yaqoub Nasrallah hanging around Subiya Lagoon, June 27th 2020

By the end of May, Kuwait health authorities lifted the full lockdown, and adjusted the COVID-19 precautions to partial curfew that allows people mobility and traveling within the country. The lifting of the lockdown came in time with the change in seasons in Kuwait and the beginning of Al-Bawarih season, ‘موسم البوارح,’ starting from beginning of June and lasting through end of July.

Since the lift of the lockdown, I got the chance to kitesurf Al-Bawarih wind on multiple spots in Kuwait, between south shores on Dubaiya, Bnaider, and Khiran, and north shore on Subiya Lagoon.

Al-Bawarih season known locally as the season where the dry-hot-air wind blow from the Northwest. According to the local astronomer Adel Almarzouq, the name Al-Bawarih season is recognized locally by people living in Northeast part of Arabian peninsula, including Kuwait, South of Iraq, Qatar, Najd and Eastern Province in Saudi Arabia. the meaning of the name in Arabic comes from the word departure, in reference to the movement of certain stars during this time of the year. Yet he mentions that in earlier times, during this season ships stop sailing, and usually it’s the two months of the year that all sailing and diving activities stop. The wind in Al-Bawarih season is also called Al-Semoum, ‘السموم,’ which translates in English to the poisonous wind. Al-Semoum wind travels through the deserts of Mesopotamia before reaching Kuwait, increasing its chances to carry the desert’s sand and creating sandstorms. During Al-Bawarih season the Al-Semoum winds could blow over 25 knots.

Mesopotamia Northwest Wind, wind forecast July 16 2020,

The meteorology writer on Areej Aldihani explained Al-Bawarih wind is generated from the decrease in air pressure over the Arabian peninsula due to the significant increase in temperatures, and the increase in air pressure over the Mediterranean, as a result the wind blows from the north to the south.

Subiya Lagoon location on the Northwest corner of the Persian Gulf, gives it the chance to be the first water surface Al-Bawarih wind reaches after traveling through the hot deserts. And by observing the wind forecast during the past 3 years, it seemed the Northwest in Kuwait wind relatively blows more knots on Subiya lagoon versus the rest of Kuwait shore. Since Summer 2019, we started to explore the Subiya Lagoon for kitesurfing and on average, during Al-Bawarih season, we are able to kite 2 to 3 days a week, versus 1 or 2 days a week on beaches south of Kuwait City.

Northwest wind blows relatively more over North shores in Kuwait. Subiya Lagoon North of Kuwait City. Forecast July 16 2020,

Since the lifting of the lockdown early in June, the kitesurfing community have been active on Subiya Lagoon, and in fact the local kitesurfing instructor Yaqoub Nasrallah from Kiteboardking Kuwait school started giving lessons on the lagoon, and 2 students already started riding on the lagoon. Moreover, Yaqoub recorded about 13.3m jump while I got highest jump 11.6m. I hope for Al-Bawarih to bring us more windy days to keep sending it.

Our recent kitesurfing sessions on Subiya Lagoon, July 2020

Readings on Al-Bawarih

Related Posts

الكايت سيرف والركمجة المظلية

بداية اهنئ القارئ بمناسبة عيد الفطر السعيد، ومع أول أيام العيد، يمكننا القول ان المتبقي امامنا في الكويت هو اسبوع أخير من الحظر الشامل، ونتمنى ان تنفرج أزمة جائحة الكارونا في القريب عن الجميع.

Rider from Kuwait Abdulaziz Albana kiteboarding Subiya Lagoon, August 15 2019

تناقشنا في التدوينة السابقة عن تسمية وترجمة اسم رياضة الكايت سيرف إلى اللغة العربية. والسبب في البحث عن الإسم او الترجمة هو بسبب حداثة الرياضة وقلة التغطية الاعلامية عليها، فالمسميات غير ثابتة وغير واضحة. ففي التدوينة السابقة تناولنا ترجمة الإسم إلى اللغة العربية، وظهر معي إسم الركمجة المظلية كأثر المسميات والترجمات قربًا من إسم الرياضة. كما شارك خلال الاسبوع الماضي ١٣ شخص بالإستطلاع حول الترجمات العربية للإسم، واتفق اكثر من ٤٥٪ من المشاركين على اسم الركمجة المظلية، كما وصلتني ردود أفعال مباشرة من الأصدقاء ومن خلال وسائل التواصل مثل الواتساب.

استوقفتني مشاركة ورأي الدكتور عارف العمر، وهو طبيب أسنان ومن هواة الركمجة المظلية او الكايت سيرف في الكويت. يقول الدكتور عارف، وقد استأذنت منه لنقل كلامة حرفياً:

رأيي ان تبقي اسم الرياضة كما هو بدون تعريب  (كايت سيرف) كما الغرب أخذ من لغتنا العربية الكثير من الكلمات لأننا كنا من اوجد هذه الاشياء مثل كلمة كاميرا وغيرها، علينا ان نتقبل الاخذ من الغرب لانهم السباقون هذه الايام. كلمة ركمجة  مأخوذة من ركوب الامواج  وهي قد لا تنطبق على رياضتنا بشكل دقيق فالكثير يفضل اللعب على الاسطح الهادئة. حاول مجمع اللغة الفرنسية فرنسة الرياضة فكانت النتيجة (الدفة المسحوبة بالهواء) بالطبع لم يأخذ أحد بها. كلمة شراع  فيها  سحب بواسطة الهواء وليس فيها اي رفع لذلك  كلمة كايت ادق كونها تحوي سحب مع رفع وهذا ما ينطبق على رياضتنا. اعتقد كل اللغات اعتمدت الاسم كما هو  كايت سيرف.

الرأي الذي يقدمه الدكتور عارف اجده أيضًا مقبول اذا كان يساعد على فهم تناول مواضيع الرياضة باللغة العربية، فالهدف هو سهولة تناول اسم الرياضة، وغالبًا ما يكون المعنى سريع الوضوح اذا ما صاحبته صورة لممارسة الرياضة. واخراج الصورة اليوم من الهاتف والبحث لن يستغرق سوى ثواني، ولكن ماذا لو كان الحوار مع اشخاص لا يتكلمون إلا اللغة العربية ومن غير وجود صور وفيديو للمساعدة على الشرح؟ كيف سيكون الشرح باللغة العربية؟ قد يكون هناك سبب للترجمة الكاملة، والخوض في الركمجة والمظلة، وقد تكون الكلمات الانجليزية المعربة كافية للشرح!

بالنسبة لي دائمًا استخدم مصطلح الكايت سيرفنغ للإشارة الرياضة، ولكن عادة عندما استخدمه مع ناس لا يعرفون الرياضة، يستغربون من الاسم ويتساءلون أكثر عن الرياضة وماهي. وعادة احاول الشرح ما بين اللغة العربية والانجليزية على حسب المتلقي، وايجاد المصطلحات الصحيحية التي تؤدي الى فهم وتخيل شكل الرياضة من دون صور.

المهم نقترب من نهاية شهر مايو، ويبدأ قريبًا موسم البوارح، وهو موسم الرياح الشمال غربية في الكويت، وعادة ما تكون هذه الرياح محملة بالغبار ويصاحبها ارتفاع في درجات الحرارة، فموسم الصيف في الكويت بدأ رسميًا فكل عام وانتم وبخير. ونتمنى صيف ممتع ومليئ بالاثارة والركمجة والكايت سيرف للجميع.

توقعات حركة الرياح على شواطئ بنيدر في الأيام المقبلة

Kitesurfing in Arabic الركمجة المظلية

Kitesurfing باللغة العربية

محاولة سريعة ومفتوحة لشرح رياضة الركمجة المظلية باللغة العربية

Alqabas Newspaper, 27 October 2019
جريدة القبس، ٢٧ اكتوبر ٢٠١٩

بدأت في كتابة هذه التدوينة في سبتمبر ٢٠١٩ ولم انتهي منها بسبب الانشغال بامور اخرى، إلا ان هذا الموضوع من المواضيع التي تردد علي من وقت الى آخر واعتقد انه من المهم الحديث عنها، ومع قدوم الجائحة اعتقد ان لدي ما يكفي من الوقت لنشر هذه التدوينة حول الركمجة المظلية. والهدف منها هو محاولة ترجمة اسم الرياضة الى اللغة العربية لتسهيل استخدامها، حيث صادف أكثر من مرة ان يستوقفني مصور من مصورين الصحف المحلية ويسأل عن إسم الرياضة برغبة لنشر خبر عنها بالجريدة، وعادة اجد صعوبة في ترجمة اسم الرياضة من اللغة الانجليزية الى اللغة العربية وتقديم الشرح السليم عن الرياضة للمتلقي باللغة العربية. ومن جانب ثاني اجدها رياضة ممتعة واريد المساهمة في نشر الرياضة وتعريف ناس اكثر بها، خصوصًا وان بيئتنا في الكويت تساعد على ممارسة هذه الرياضة. منذ اطلاق هذه المدونة خصوصًا واغلب التدوينات التي اقوم بها هنا تخص ممارسة رياضة الركمجة المظلية في الكويت، ولكن اقوم بالتدوين عادة باللغة الانجليزية بهدف نشر معلومات عن الرياضة من الكويت الى العالم. طبعًا يمكن قراءة جميع التدوينات السابقة باللغة العربية من خلال خاصية الترجمة التي يوفرها برنامج التصفح جوجل كروم.

مسمى الرياضة

طبعًا، لست خبير لغوي ولست عالم لغات، لكن اريد مسمى سهل وبسيط باللغة العربية للإشارة إلى رياضة ال Kitesurfing

عندما قامت جريدة القبس بنقل الخبر اول مرة لم تذكر اسم الرياضة، وفي المرة ثانية قرر المحرر تسمية الرياضة القفز على الماء، فوجدت الاسم او الترجمة غريبة وبعيدة عن طبيعة وطريقة الرياضة.

حاولت البحث عن اي مصادر او مقالات باللغة العربية تشير الى اسم الرياضة ولكن لم اجد شيئا غير استخدام الانجليزي المعرب مثل كايت سيرفنغ، وغير القبس وجدت صحيفة المصري اليوم تنقل اخبار الرياضة والمنافسات التي تحصل في جمهورية مصر نظرًا لانتشار الرياضة فيها، الا ان النقل اعتمد في اغلب الاوقات على الانجليزية المعربة، او مسميات مثل التزحلق على الماء بالمظلة او رياضة الطائرات الشراعية، التزحلق على الماء بالمظلات كما ورد لتغطية وكالة الاخبار الالمانية باللغة العربية، و وللامانة لم اقتنع بهذه الترجمة والتسميات، فاسم هذه الرياضة له معنى ولابد ان يكون له معنى باللغة العربية.

أجد الموضوع سهل التفسير اذا ما نظرنا الى طبيعة الرياضة وفهم أساس التسمية لها باللغة الانجليزية، فإسم الرياضية ينقسم إلى إسمين، فهي عبارة عن دمج لأكثر من رياضة في رياضة واحدة، فالركمجة، وهي الترجمة العربية لرياضة ركوب الأمواج، يضاف إليها مسمى الطائرات الورقية او المظلة، او الشراع الممتد على شكل مظلة، والذي يستخدم كوسيلة اساسية لتحويل تيارات وحركية الرياح إلى طاقة سحب وحركية يستخدمها ممارس الرياضة ليتمكن من التزحلق على الماء بواسطة لوح الركمجة. فالمسمى مركب لعمليتين اساسيتين، وهما الركمجة والتحكم بالمظلة او الطائرة الورقية. أفضل استخدام كلمة مظلة، نسبة الى القفز المظلي ولتشابه مظلة ممارسة الرياضة للمظلة المستخدمة في القفز المظلي، اكثر من انها طائرة ورقية، فمسمى الطائرة الورقية ليس الترجمة الدقيقة وليس الفعل الدقيق، واستخدام المظلة هو استخدام بديل للشراع، فيمكن ان تسمي الكايت مظلة او شراع، ويكون بذلك الاسم المركب للرياضة إما الركمجة المظلية او الركمجة الشراعية، فهل هي ركمجة شراعية او ركمجة مظلية، قد يكون المسميين سليمين من وجهة نظري المتواضعة، ووجدت مسمى الركمجة المظلية اسهل للتداول من الاسم الذي يقدمه مترجم جوجل: ركوب الامواج بالطائرة الورقية

طبيعة الركمجة المظلية

تعتبر رياضة الركمجة المظلية من الرياضات المائية المتطرفة، وهي رياضة حديثة نسبيًا، ظهرت في بدايات التسعينات واخذت تنتشر بشكل اوسع في آخر عشر سنوات بعد تطور المعدات والادوات المستخدمة فيها.

تقرير عن الرياضة والمسابقات الرياضية الركمجة المظلية

تعتمد الركمجة المظلية بشكل رئيسي على الرياح وسرعة الرياح واتجاهاته، وعادة ما يصبح هواة ممارسة هذه الرياضة مهووسون بحالة الطقس، وهذه بالضبط حالتي في آخر اربع سنوات، وايضا من الاسباب التي دعتني الى إطلاق هذه المدونة هو لتدوين ورصد حالة الريح في الكويت وفي المناطق التي امارسها فيها رياضة الركمجة المظلية.

إتجاه الريح وسرعة الريح تخلق قوة سحب من المظلة إلى الشخص المتصل بها ليتمكن من التزحلج على الماء من خلال لوح التزحلج. وتعتبر من الرياضات المتطرفة لما فيها من خطورة وتتطلب الحذر والتركيز المستمر لتجنب الحوادث والاصابات. من يريدون ممارسة الرياضة يجب عليهم الاستعداد لتلقي بعض الصدمات وشرب ماء البحر، فالبداية ليست سهلة، وكلما استمرت الممارسة تستمر التحديات للقيام بالحركات المتطرفة.

Aziz Albana Flying Subiya Lagoon August 2019

ممارسة الركمجة المظلية في الكويت

بدأت ممارسة رياضة الركمجة المظلية في الكويت سنة ٢٠١٦، فبعد ان كنت قد بدأت بالتولع برياضة الركمجة، اخبرني آحد الاصدقاء عن المتعة والاثارة في الركمجة المظلية وقررت وقتها الالتحاق بمدرسة التدريب الوحيدة في الكويت Salty Sports.

لم اتوقف عن اخذ الدروس التدريبية في الكويت كل ما حصل يوم فيه هواء كافي، ولكن التطور الحقيقي في ممارسة الرياضة حصل بعد رحلة ٥ آيام في البحر الاحمر مع مجموعة من المدربين والمتدربين انطلقنا من الكويت الى الغردقة، وبعدها كان التدريب بشكل يومي، ومع العودة للكويت في بداية صيف ٢٠١٧ قمت بشراء عدة الركمجة المظلية واستمريت بممارسة الرياضة مع كل يوم فيه الريح المناسب.

Alqabas Newspaper 2 April 2019
جريدة القبس، ٢ ابريل ٢٠١٩

نحصل في الكويت على معدل يوم إلى يومين في الاسبوع على ريح في سرعة معقولة ومقبولة لممارسة الركمجة المظلية، أي سرعة فوق ١٢ عقدة تعتبر مقبولة، وكلما زادت سرعة الريح زادت المتعة. والممتع في الكويت أيضًا انها تمتد كلها على شريط ساحلي طويل، يسمح بتغيير موقع ممارسة الرياضة مع تغير اتجاه الريح.

اتجاهات الريح في الكويت، في اغلب الايام تكون إما جنوب شرقية خصوصا في فصل الشتاء ،والربيع، وتكون شمال غربية في فصل الصيف، وعادة يكون فصل الخريف راكد وتزيد فيه الرطوبة.

يمكن اختيار موقع النزول على حسب اتجاه الريح والوقت المتاح، شخصيًا افضل النزول في اغلب الايام إما في خور الصبية او بنيدر، حيث المياه تكون اقل تلوث والشواطئ تكون عادة شبه خالية.

لدينا في الكويت مدرسة واحدة لتعليم الركمجة المظلية وهي كانت مغلقة بشكل مؤقت نهاية ٢٠١٩ على أمل إعادة افتتاحها بعد الجائحة. كما يوجد عدد ممن يمارسون الرياضة في الكويت والحاصلين على رخصة التدريب، فربما من يرغب بممارسة الرياضة بعد الجائحة يمكنه التواصل معي لإيصاله بالمدربين المحليين.

البطولات والمنافسات الرياضية

تعتبر الركمجة المظلية من الرياضات الحديثة والتي لازالت قيد التطور، ولكن في العشرين سنة الماضية ظهرت العديد من البطولات والمنافسات العالمية والاقليمية والمحلية، كما وافقت اللجنة الاولمبية على اضافة سباق الركمجة المظلية إلى قائمة المسابقات الاولمبية في باريس ٢٠٢٤، الجدير بالذكر ان اولمبيات توكيو ٢٠٢٠ كان يفترض ان تكون اول بطولة اولمبية لرياضة الركمجة.

تنقسم المنافسة في بطولات الركمجة المظلية الى ثلاث فئات رئيسية، فئة السباقات، السرعة والمسافة، وثانيا فئة الطيران العالي، ويعتمد تقييم المتنافسين فيه بشكل كبير على الارتفاع ومدة الطيران، وثالثًا فئة المنافسة الحرة، ويعتمد التقييم فيها على التعقيد في الحركات التي يقوم بها المتنافسون. واولمبيات باريس اعتمدت اضافة سباقات السرعة والمسافة فقط الى الألعاب الاولمبية.

نظرا لقلة عدد ممارسين الرياضة حاليا في الكويت، فلم تقم اي منافسة او بطولة محلية، ولكن نتمنى بالمستقبل وبعد انتهاء الجائحة ان تزدهر رياضة الركمجة المظلية في الكويت، فالاجواء والبيئة تساعد على ممارسة هذه الرياضة.

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