A favorite summer sport at Hollister Ranch is Kiteboarding. The combination of side-shore winds and adjacent kelp forests make for a perfect setting for skimming across a relatively smooth surface with a steady wind at one’s back. Nowhere else in southern Santa Barbara County is as perfectly set up for Kiteboarding as here at Hollister Ranch.
Kiteboarding is a surface water sport combining aspects of wakeboarding, snowboarding, windsurfing, surfing, paragliding, skateboarding and gymnastics into one extreme sport. A kiteboarder harnesses the power of the wind with a large controllable power kite to be propelled across the water on a kiteboard similar to a wakeboard or a small surfboard, with or without foot-straps or bindings.
Kitesurfing is a style of kiteboarding specific to wave riding, which uses standard surfboards or boards shaped specifically for the purpose. Kitesurfers rarely get in the way of surfboard riders. Surfboard riders prefer a glassy surface or offshore winds. Kitesurfers need an onshore or side-shore wind. With a good wind, kitesurfers also enjoy greater speeds than simple wave riders.
There are different styles of kiteboarding, including freestyle, freeride, downwinders, speed, course racing, wakestyle, jumping and kitesurfing in the waves. In 2012, the number of kitesurfers was estimated at 1.5 million persons worldwide. The global market for kite gear sales is worth US $250 million and probably more.
Professional kiteboarder Patrick Rebstock, a friend and Hollister Ranch owner, is one of the best kitesurfers in the world. From the offices of Hollister Ranch Realty we can see Patrick and the other HR kitesurfers enjoying their sport directly below.