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Author: Subject: Ocean Beach San Fran
nelson




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[*] posted on 4-23-2009 at 05:52 PM


Just got back from Ocean beach. The lifeguard stopped me as well and told me it is now illegal because it poses a threat to both pedestrians and wildlife. Yada yada yada you guys know this already. Kite flying statically is allowed, just now buggy or mountainboards. He said he is making mental notes of who he has told and if he sees you again, he will say "Hey, we've been through this. I'm going to have to get the park ranger to right you a citation now." He gave me a pamphlet and suggested I voice my opinion by going on the website. (I'm guessing one of you guys posted it already)

I'll voice my opinion and make some suggestions like allowing buggy/landboarding south of ocean beach where there are less pedestrians.

I was stopped around 2pm and there was hardly any pedestrians around so the lifeguard is really enforcing this new law despite how empty it may be on the beach.

For those of you guys who have not been caught yet and if you are stubborn and kite anyways, I suggest doing it south of OC where the lifeguard might not spot you. Who ever was flying the PL synergy today...didn't seem like they got a warning. Lucky him.
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[*] posted on 4-24-2009 at 12:47 PM


that guy with pl synergy is my buddy . he got warning as well only he was able to kiteboard for sometime before ranger showed up. i just talk to GG parks and they say u cannot every kite activity is banned now even kitesurfing. its really seems like no one know what is the rules/laws about this . any news on this guys?
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[*] posted on 4-24-2009 at 03:08 PM


wow this really kinda puts a dent i my plans to not need a car. I am currently learning to kite surf and was planning on buying a board so I could kite at ob on land also, and now I won't be able to do either . I live about a mile from ob and would just take muni now I will either have to go to crissy to kite in the water ( I have to comute all the way to alameda as is as I am a beginer but that is about 2 hours each way) the only good thing is I haven't forked over the 200+ bucks on a land board ( not much of a plus really) so anything I can do to get involved to keep access for kitesports at ob count me in!

Ron
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hardy




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[*] posted on 4-24-2009 at 06:18 PM


over at bayareakiteboarding one guy called head ranger and she told him kitesurfing is allowed . so who knows.
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Dutch




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[*] posted on 4-24-2009 at 06:58 PM


Just got back from OB. Wind (gusts) too strong and tide too high too buggy, but there were tons of kitesurfers, and no rangers or lifeguard in sight. If no kiting is allowed anymore, it did not show.



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[*] posted on 4-26-2009 at 06:40 PM


yeah i just spoke with a kitesurf buddy of mine who didn't believe me when i told him about the kite ban. weird. sounds like a rule that is only enforced by those in the know or have a problem with kite sports. i'm apprehensive about asking too many questions which may "piss off" and bring attention to the the authorities, but i also do not want a $275 ticket from ranger rick.
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[*] posted on 4-27-2009 at 05:26 AM


Kitesurfing doesn't seem to be the issue. Kite buggying/boarding where there is potential risk to beachgoers and the snowy plover is the issue.



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Dagon




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[*] posted on 4-27-2009 at 10:26 AM


Ok so I need all your help here. I spoke with a lawyer friend of mine and he suggested that we try to appeal to the superintendent. He said it sounds like the superintendent is well within his discretionary authority to ban kite buggying. Therefore it is unlikely we would be able to challenge his authority in court. So he suggested I try and schedule an appointment with him to try and win him over and belay his worries to try and let bugging be allowed under certain conditions. so we need to come up with a list of arguments as to why it would be good to allow kite buggying. Things we need to address:
1. Safety to visitors
what if the pilot looses control of the kite - detail safety measures (kite brakes etc.)
how much space do we need to buggy
how do we avoid people/accidents
2. Safety to wildlife
point out we stay out of the plover nesting area by staying in the wet sand
the kites are high above the nesting area
3. Resouce damage
the buggy is very light, goes only in the wet sand, leaves no permanent marks or damage.


We should also find out if kite surfing is allowed and point out that that is a similar sport that is allowed.
We should also point out that static kite flying is allowed, therfore the kite itself should not be labeled as hazardous.
We should also point out that the leash laws on the beach are not strongly enforced and the dogs pose an equal threat to wildlife and visitors.
We should make a good argument that the buggies are a significant esthetic apeal to many visitors, people are fascinated by the sport and love to stop and watch.

We should be prepared to have insurance (can anyone tell me how we would get this)
We should be prepared to self police ourselves, perhapse even come up with a certification/liscence so the park knows who we are and would feel like they could hold us accountable if they felt there was a problem.
we can suggest some rules such as a certain section of the beach or particular days of the week that buggying is allowed.


So all of you who love ocean beach please give me your suggestions for the arguments I have detailed. I want to have a nice list of arguments and suggestions to come to the superintendent with. I want this to be well thought out. If anyone can come up with previous kite buggy access and legal issues that I could cite to argue a precident that would be very helpfull.
I welcome all your suggestions and hope to have a good list of detailed arguments.




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Dagon




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[*] posted on 4-27-2009 at 11:12 AM


from: http://www.powerkiteforum.com/viewthread.php?tid=1337

This is a very good bit of language : In California, a kite buggy CANNOT BE CITED AS A VEHICLE, and in California, using a kite buggy on a public beach CANNOT BE CLASSIFIED AS "GAMES OR ACTIVITIES WHICH ENDANGER THE PUBLIC".


It cannot be classified as an activity which endangers the public, we can use that argument in our apeal to the superindenent
Also, Lack-o-slack made a good argument that even though a kite buggy is capable of speeds above 50mph, it is up to the operator to maintain safe speeds. just like a car is capable of speeds around 180mph, the highway patrol cannot ban you from the freeway just to make sure you dont speed.
So maybe we should argue for a speed limit on the beach, maybe we could say we will carry GPS units with us so the life guard can stop us and check our max speeds?


update:
looks like there is no paperwork on this case. Unfortunately since this case was handled in the Judges Chambers between the attorney who represented Mike and the judge, there was no legal binding papers ever made. It simply was dropped and Mike was not charged.
so it looks like we dont have any precedent but if someone comes up with something let me know.




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art_lessing


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[*] posted on 4-27-2009 at 02:43 PM


I bet his attorney has the records and paperwork in this case.....any way to get a hold of him?



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Dutch




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[*] posted on 4-27-2009 at 09:55 PM


Hey Dagon, fabulous efforts, and thanks for defending us OB buggiers. Excellent information so far.

One thought I had is that we need to avoid to either go into "victim" mode, and the opposite; "bite back" mode with the superintendent. Both are irrelevant. OB is a public space, and us buggying there is a privilege, that we can easily loose if we pose a threat. In other words, rather than seeking a confrontation with with arguments ("banning cars from the highway"), we should address concerns, which imo come down to correcting misinformation, and education; kites do not kill, scare or harm Snowy Plovers (unleashed dogs and people do), buggy speeds on OB are slower than your average mountain bike, and the public (including tourists) generally love us (I've had countless improvised demo's and information sessions with complete strangers of all ages, genders and nationalities, as I am sure most of you have, which is only part of the fun).

Visiting Fort Funston over the weekend, I realized they did an excellent job in putting up signs informing, educating, and warning people about hang gliding. Same with us; we can put signs; "Careful, kite buggies in operation" or "Look Up!" (lol). Also, dedicating a specific area of OB, combined with dedicated times (low tides), can go a long way. And self-policing; e.g. no balloon wheels and big piranha kites, stay on the wet packed sand at the tide line, and behave. A buggy license seems a good idea.

Let's get the superintendent into a buggy, so he understands not only the fun we have, but the fact that there is no risk to the public or wildlife. I for one believe we add to the value of OB and thus the city, and without risk.

Yeah!




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[*] posted on 4-28-2009 at 04:10 AM


Dutch, why do you say "no balloon wheels"?



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[*] posted on 4-28-2009 at 07:19 AM


my guess is so you are forced to stay in the wet hard packed sand?
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Dagon




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[*] posted on 4-28-2009 at 07:54 AM


I spoke with Elton who said he spoke to one of the other life guards at OB. sounds like there is a new life guard who is covering for another life guard for a few months, all the problems seem to be comming from this one life guard. He is very serious about enforcing all the rules. So I suggest we just keep it cool for a few months then check back in. We can still kite jump at ob and fly static. If we make too much of a fuss it could backfire so lets wait a bit and if we still have problems after this life guard leaves then we can go to the superintendent.



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hardy




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[*] posted on 4-28-2009 at 12:43 PM


maybe we can try to get his work schedule and go there only when he is off :singing: :D
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Dagon




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[*] posted on 4-28-2009 at 02:41 PM


I tried that already, I couldnt get the details because the dispatcher I was talking to was very suspicous. but evidently they are there every day from 9am -7, I ussually see them leave at 6pm. I dont know when this guy works but his name is John.
you will find that out when he stops you to hassle you. He stops people from feeding the birds, getting their feet wet, etc.
Provided that this is a public forum we should be descrete about our discussions, or maybe I am just getting paranoid.




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[*] posted on 4-28-2009 at 06:58 PM


"You mean these kite guys have their own forum about their kites and buggies and stuff?" I'm sure he has no idea. I might be naive. :dunno:

If you can resolve the obvious safety issues and have enough visibility, night buggying is quite fantastic.




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[*] posted on 5-30-2009 at 10:06 PM


This whole kite licensing system seems like a good idea. When are you guys going to act?




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nelson




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[*] posted on 6-2-2009 at 02:38 PM


I'd like to help in any way possible since I also kiteboard on OB. It's a shame I can't get out in the surf because of my lack of skill in the water and swim strength....

I agree the ideas of kiteboarding/buggying during certain times and sections of the beach. Does anyone avoid kitebuggy/boarding when the beach gets crowded? I do that already (for the safety of others), so perhaps if we suggested that idea as well, it might bring back the possibility of kiting on the beach again.
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[*] posted on 6-2-2009 at 08:00 PM


That was general policy at OB - an agreement betweem the lifeguards and the kiters - if it was too busy just pack it up, a mutual respect thing.

Was just down there static flying this last weekend - confirmed with the lifeguards that it is an individual that has a problem with kiters not the system itself. Kiting (landboards and buggying is seen as a dangerous activity such as skateboarding - has nothing to do with the plovers right now since their breeding season ended on May 15th). The 2 lifeguards I asked about the ban were totally cool - to even go as far to say they wouldn't care if I wanted to do some riding since the individual in question was off that day - they said that getting organized and offering to talk things out with the person in question over a period of time was a good idea. I agree with that - a dialogue started and maintained over a period of time will get us farther than waiting for someone to just go away. I live 130 miles from OB and am willing to avail myself for any group get together/ meetings that could be attended to work things out with parties on either side of this issue. But a spokesperson for our interests should be a local - someone from the area that can speak to parties from the position of local interest. If no one wants that responsibility than I will give the proper folks a call and see if I can arrange a dialogue. I am asking because I don't want to go stomping over someone elses efforts without inquireing first.




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Dutch




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[*] posted on 6-11-2009 at 09:57 PM


Went to OB last Sunday morning. Beautiful steady winds from the west, 15 mph, blue skies, low tide and a relatively empty beach. Perfect for a pleasurably cruise. It was about 9:30 when I got going. After about an hour of zen-kiting, I was stopped by the life guards. Stunningly, I was not kicked off the beach, but warned that "Jon" was on duty, and would arrive any minute. Basically they didn't care about me buggying, since they know we do not pose a threat to public safety, but, as he put it, "Jon is on his way, and so is a ranger, and they will give you an official warning (in writing)". He also told me "Jon" is on duty Thursdays through Sundays. That leaves us the rest of the week, and the early morning and evening hours over the weekend when they are off duty. Apparently "Jon" is the new supervisor for OB.

I decided to pack up an not take my chances, since I am here on a permit (yes I am an "alien", still looking for the green bits), and prefer to have a blank slate. "Jon" did indeed arrive after I packed up. So, a big thanks to the life guard for the warning. I still have a blank slate, and it seems we still have friends at OB.




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[*] posted on 6-11-2009 at 10:16 PM


Thanks for the info. Good call on not trying to stir the pot. Since I haven't heard back from anyone on this topic in the last week I'll see what I can do to get the ball rolling. I'll be using the info Dagon listed above along with my nicest disposition to see if I can start talks to eventually getting things back to the way they were. Wish me luck.



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[*] posted on 6-12-2009 at 04:57 PM


" Never dought that a small group of commited citizen can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."



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[*] posted on 7-15-2009 at 03:44 PM


Here on the Central Coast we had 20 beautiful miles of beach to buggy when I started. Now I have less than 1/4 mile of highly populated beach by Morro Rock. The other day there was a complaint I was on State property, from the tracks it was clear that I was not, however the Ranger thought we needed a buffer zone since there is no dotted line on the beach, asking me to only use half of my tiny beach. This is also the only beach on the West Coast that lets RAW SEWAGE into the bay durring a storm. Nasty! Brown foam..There is also Dog beach, but you know what happens there.. I take the owner for a little run, yes I do. so to gain access back to our beaches we have to fight!
I have spoken to a lawyer and here are some things we can do to get a law passed. this is just the beginning, so please try to inform me of additional methods or suggestions.

Goals
1. Show Plovers are not endangered
a. Contact counter and find out who is in charge.
b. what are the statistics and what is needed to not be endangered.
c. Hire our own ecologist counter?

2.Get California Law passed to Kite Buggy State Beaches.
a. Bill pushed through
1. Contact assemblyman, (inform of the problem) ask for aid that deals with Beach property/ leisure services
2. Contact State Senator (inform of the problem) supports sports, green enegry
3 Contact Arnold and Schedule a powerkite session with him, so that when a bill lands on his desk in January he will be excited about it. (I want to be there!)
4. Prepare a State Buggy Safety certificate program.
3. Kinsley of xtremebigair.com already has a petition going that needs our help.

Here is the online petition group, please join to fight to keep our beach open:
http://groups.google.com/group/free-oceano-beach?hl=en


I might be going about this in the wrong direction, so please give your feedback and HELP. If you seem suited for one of the tasks PLEASE put your name by it and let me know you are on it! I just learned about the Brown act which might be of use to us as it allows previous activity to a group that was already there before the law came into affect. Any additions or change of plans are welcome. I could also use a fun, safe looking buggy video with no jumping. 2-5 min.




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[*] posted on 11-30-2009 at 10:58 PM


I don't suppose anyone is following this thread anymore, but I've been giving this a lot of thought since I was stopped last summer.

The best thing I could come up with was a permitting process, like a fishing license, that would allow the National Seashore to raise some money and allow us to continue kiting.

Cheers to all the good info on here.
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[*] posted on 12-1-2009 at 07:49 AM


This topic is much more important to me since OB is about to be about an hour away from home. Any developments on the ground there? Any relaxation now that the summer season is over?



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[*] posted on 9-7-2013 at 02:59 PM


Bump...
I really want to ride here.
Any developments?
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