Tied to the Sky / kite shop

Why I like flying kites

sharing kites with studentsI am often asked why in a world of drones would I still fly kites. I smile and often hand the lines to them to fly my kite and watch them discover their own answer!

I mean no disrespect to drone flyers because I think they are pretty cool. I like technology, but after careful reflection, I find that for me kites are ideal, and here are just a few reasons why:

1) Kites are low tech - what I mean is they are flown by mechanical means (i.e., lines) and not via screens or joysticks. Truth be told I have way more screen time than I need! For fear of turning into a bigger vidiot, and exacerbating the stress injury to my gaming thumbs I prefer kites!  Some of the best kites are the simple ones you can make yourself with newspaper and masking tape.

2) Kites are High Tech - in their own way - there is a lot of science and engineering in good quality kites. From high tech sail cloth to high-tech carbon frames along with geometry there is a lot that goes into a performance kite. Consider many sport kites allow you to change and interchange framing which changes the flight characteristics. Learning the tweaks for your kite can be a lot of fun and produce some pretty amazing results.

3) Crashes are not nearly as catastrophic - Parts to repair your kite are easily accessible from quality kite shops, and you can be back in the air pretty quick. Most repairs can be a successful do-it-yourself project saving time, money and adding some new crafty skills to your bag of tricks!

4) Speaking of tricks! - Have you seen the latest in slack line tricks and expressive quad line kite videos? Wow! Modern stunt kites are capable of some pretty cool maneuvres which require practice and precision. Even someone with few hours can tear up the sky with colour and motion that will attract an audience.

5) Strings attached? You bet! This is one of my favorites because it has strings Great Canadian Kite Company - Mike Roseattached - it provides multi-sensory feedback and interaction with your kite. Not only to see your kite you interact with it directly as you provide the input, and you receive feedback through the lines from the kite. In a counterintuitive way, this is a really grounded experience or maybe a better way to describe it is like a dance where you and your partner respond to each other with each step!

6) Colour your World - I LOVE the colour and the creativity of kites in the sky! If you have visited our Kite shop, you will have noticed the multiplicity of colours, sizes, and shapes and this makes for a dynamic hobby experience. A kite bag with a variety of kites provides a wonderful way to decorate the sky!

7) Quiet, please! - Kites, in general, are very quiet. No whining of engines, they simply ride the wind. In a world that is so darn noisy, it can be a reset to the mind to go quiet. The sound the wind in the trees, a slight whistle on the line makes for a great, stress reducing afternoon. Like a little growl? Some stunt kites make a deep rumble as the wind departs the trailing edge as they tear through the sky .

8) No Batteries required - Kites don't require batteries and as such aren't limited to 20-minute flights, and there is no need for a recharge. The Wind and the lines are all you need to fly - and wind and weather permitting... all day long!

9) There's a kite for that! - No wind? Too much wind? There's a kite for that. Remember I was talking about high-tech materials and engineering? You can get kites that you can learn to fly with no wind! Yep - zip, zero, zilch! We also have kites that are designed for higher winds too - we have a new model coming from Revolution that appears to have way less sail material than frame - like me in a bathing suit (don't picture it!) I have seen video's of this kite performing in very high winds and handling it very well!

Want a kite for water? To pull a kayak? Take pictures from? Pull you on the snow? There's a kite for that!

10) Stress buster! I'm an introvert, and as such, I spend a lot of time in my head. This can sometimes not be a good place to be! So I find going and flying a kite a great way to "get out of my head," get into the present moment and connect in a multi-tactile way with the world. The colours of the kite, actively flying my kite, giving it input to do what I want it to do and getting the feed back from the kite itself demands I stay present. I find this incredibly effective at reducing stress, and often getting a fresh perspective.

Great Canadian Kite Company - online kite storeThere are times where I will put mu earbuds in and listen to whatever kind of music I'm feeling at the moment and flying my kite to that music. It's kind of like dancing, but it allows me to express my inner state of mind through the kite. I can fly my stress out through the lines and the kite. In short order, that stress energy is replaced with a greater sense of peace and the way I fly changes. However you like to fly, I just encourage you to fly your soul, express yourself, and have fun!!

These have been just a few reasons we LOVE flying kites and why we LOVE to share kites with others!

At Great Canadian Kite Company, not only do we pride ourselves in providing a variety of quality kites for many different interests, ages and abilities, we also want to do our best to make sure your kite flying experience is great, and that means we do our best to provide a selection of kite flying tips and advice in our Kite Blog section. Browse our online Canadian kite shop to buy your kites online. We ship throughout Canada. 

Don't see what you are looking for? Have a kite related question? Drop us an email!

Read more →

National Kite Day - Just what I needed!

February 8 and I discover it is National Kite Day.   February? Kites?  Maybe for the the adrenaline junkies racing across the snow pulled by large traction kites, or perhaps for the lucky folks in southern climates where cold and snow are not a reality - but February 8th in Southern Alberta?

Well, God was smiling upon this prairie boy today with a gorgeous sunny day at a balmy +16 degrees Celsius and a lovely west wind  about 20 kph.   The flying field was clear and dry - so I couldn't have asked for a better day in February!

I started off with a new favourite - the Toxic by R-Sky.  Such a sexy dual-line kite, tuned right in and she snapped to attention.   Had times where I would toss it around the sky to the delight of the children in the school yard across the way as they pressed up against the chain link to watch the Toxic strut her stuff.  Lots of cheers from the pint-sized audience!  Made this kite flying hack feel like a pro!

The recess bell rang and the children returned to class and the I started practicing forms, and a few more graceful patterns.  It has been a long while since I had opportunity to enjoy an extended period of time to fly.

As you probable know - a kite day is not complete without some time with Revolution quad line kite.  The winds had diminished to about 12-15kph so I chose one of my favourites - a full sail1.5 with a 3 wrap frame in our shop colours O'Canada.   Talk about therapeutic!  OMG - sail loaded so nicely, the wind wasn't too trashy at all.   I was a bit concerned that my injured right arm would struggle with control but even my body chose to be gracious on this lovely day.   I like Revs for so many reasons,  I like the precision, the outa box unidirectional control, introverted flying , stop at a dime, and the way they hover, like they are nailed to the sky.

(The only bummer was couldn't find the power cord to my video camera to get the battery charge and shoot some video.  I'd like to blame my kid... but truth be told... I think I'm the guilty party.)

FYI - used Shanti Warp Speed line on both kites today.  Love Shanti line - performs greats, lasts forever!

A fantastic day - and the good news... the rest of the week is looking even better!  I hope that wherever you are that you have time to get out and fly whatever puts a smile on your face!

Smooth Winds.

 

P.S. - April is National Kite Month!

Read more →

Gift Cards!

Shopping for someone else but not sure what to give them? Give them the gift of choice with a Great Canadian Kite Company Gift Card.

Gift cards provide a flexible way for you to purchase a gift for someone from Great Canadian Kite Company, while maintaining full freedom of choice! You simply purchase gift cards the same, secure way that you purchase any other of our product. And unlike a gift certificate, the recipient can spread the gift card balance over multiple visits!

Gift cards are delivered by email and contain instructions to redeem them at checkout. Our gift cards have no additional processing fees.

See our New Gift Cards

Read more →

Canadian Dollar & Kite Prices

Great Canadian Kite Company!As anyone who has been watching the value of the Canadian $$ versus the American has noticed, it appears as if the days of parity have disappeared for a while.  While in many ways this is good news for the Canadian manufacturing and the resource sectors, it will begin to impact prices on our imports, and yes, this includes kites!

I am preparing for my trip to the Kite Trade Association International (KTAI) meeting in Las Vegas at the end of the month.  I will be meeting with a number of kite manufacturers to see the latest, hottest kite products coming to the market.  We work closely throughout the year with our suppliers to ensure we are in the loop and you can access some great kites. 

(Watch our Facebook Page for Posts from Vegas starting Jan. 29)

Many of the manufacturers are also seeing their manufacturing costs increasing and some are being squeezed for manufacturing time forcing them to anticipate demand much further in advance than before.  Of course these cost get passed on down the line. We are seeing our product costs and the Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) of many of our kite products firming.  In addition, the Canadian dollar's relative weakness compared to US currency is putting increased pressure on kite prices in Canada.

We are fortunate for a number of efficiencies that allow us to continue to offer some of the best kites and accessories at really competitive prices - even with the US retailers. Purchasing your kites and kite accessories from the Great Canadian Kite Company will ensure:

  • Competitive pricing
  • Quality products & service
  • In house parts
  • Special / Custom Orders - Quick & Easy
  • Easier exchanges and returns (See our generous Return Policy)
  • Prompt After Sale Service
  • No surprises like extra fees, taxes and duties
  • No exchange rate shock on your credit card statement
  • Your Orders don't get bogged down clearing Customs

Great Canadian Kite Company is celebrating almost a decade in the Kite business, and we have taken pride in doing the best job we can to provide quality kites and accessories at FAIR, competitive prices.  The best part continues to be the opportunity to serve many, many of you over again!  We are so grateful for your patronage!

Below is a graph showing the change in the relative value of the Canadian dollar to the US.  Typically, we as consumers do not pay this price on our credit card purchases, as the card issuers generally charge 1-5% for margin.  Check with your credit card company for further details.  

As a courtesy, here is a link to RBC to demonstrate what might be indicative of a consumer exchange rate. Exchange Calculator

 

Graph source: https://www.google.ca/finance?q=CADUSD

 

 

 

 

Read more →