Avon beach has been a hot spot for water sports for decades thanks to it’s variety of conditions caused by a significant sandbar 500 meters offshore which joins to Mudeford Spit and runs parallel with the beach for around 1km.
Forming a peeling break at high tide, ramps at mid tide and then sheltering an inner lagoon at low, riders can pick and choose their environment by arriving at the right time and heading heading to specific areas.
Riders do need to be aware of significant water currents, wind changes and differing beach environments which can make or break a session.
Care should also be taken at the launch spot which has several notable hazards.
ENE | E | SE | S | SW
Facing SE, the location is ideal in side-shore SSW and Easterly winds.
SE wind works here, but extra care should be taken as the launch area isn’t ideal in directly onshore winds as the narrow beach is fringed with hazards and water deep within 10 meters of the shore making it difficult to leave the beach.
RIDE-ABLE: ALL TIDES
Understanding the changes in tide are very important here due to the depth of water, protrusion of sandbars and strong flow of currents.
In mid strength tides the sandbar is around 2 meters deep at high tide.
At mid strength low tides the sandbar dries out around 30cm above the water leaving a flat inner lagoon of deep water with around 300 meters of space between the bar and shore .
The inner lagoon which remains deep is part of the channel into Mudeford harbour. The water races in and out of this stretch at up to 10 knots during spring tides. This flow of water must not be underestimated.
An incoming tide ‘floods’ from East to West into the harbour, and outgoing tide ‘ebbs’ from West to East.
Note: Currents pushing towards the wind will increase upwind riding ability, apparent wind and chop, but also make it harder to retrieve boards and relaunch crashed kites.
Currents pushing quickly with the wind make kiting upwind nearly impossible, particularly underpowered.
Therefore - riders in Mudeford must ensure to take extra care when riding in an incoming tide not to get pushed into the Quay.
On Avon beach riders should be aware of the fringing sea wall, overhanging trees and rock groynes. They should set up away from them, choosing an area with ample space, then avoid flying by them, heading straight to the water after launching, particularly in on shore winds.
Off the beach the water gets deep quickly so riders should be ready to ride straight away upwind, or body drag out if needed.
The shore break at high tide should be tackled confidently, leaving plenty of downwind space for error.
On the water the channel must be avoided and currents not under anticipated.
Riders should make themselves aware of the location at high and low tide, planning an exit point if they drift downwind. Riders must not ride through Mudeford Quay as the wind turns flukey in the area there is most tide and zero safe landing area.
LOCAL RESTRICTIONS / ETIQUETTE
Riders should not hesitate on the beach here, they should launch their kite and go straight to the water
On the water riders should be aware of the Mudeford channel and avoid riding in it. Riders must give way to boats
At high tide Wave riding rules of the road apply here:
The rider on the wave has right of way
The rider closest to the steepest section has right of way
You should avoid riding in the ‘critical section’ when not on a wave
Ample space and right of way should be given to beach users and swimmers
Riders must not ride through Mudeford Quay as the wind turns flukey in the area there is most tide and zero safe landing area
During summer months the RNLI set out a flagged swim area, no kiting is permitted in this zone
LOCAL LOGISTICS AND AMENITIES
Postcode: BH23 4AN
Pay and display parking is located at shore road carpark, near the beach
The Noisy Lobster restaurant and cafe is located at the end of Avon car park
A public toilet is located at the Noisy Lobster