Thursday, March 16, 2006

Important Notice: Kahana Permit Suspended

Our Kahana permit expired at the end of February. I have been working with the division of State Parks to renew it, and it was ready for my signature as of late last week. But before I could pick it up, they called to say they want to hold the permit until the beach fills back in. Today I called Dan Quinn, the director of the division, and he confirmed that he'd like to see the beach fill back in before our permit goes into effect this time. Due to the recent flooding and erosion, there's a lot less beach out there right now to be shared safely between all park users. Dan and I will monitor the regrowth of the beach and keep in touch, and we will get the permit in place as soon as we agree that the beach is big enough to handle all of the customary traffic. Thanks for your understanding.


Alex said...

Wow, I know this is a depressing article, but do you guys really have no comments at all? I'm pretty bummed out about it myself but I have to admit I understand where they're coming from. At the moment they're not issuing camping permits either.

So while we don't have a permit, I want to make it clear that we are not going to be trying to land on the beach. In the meantime, if by some miracle we ever get our typical Kahana tradewind weather back, I suggest that any die-hard Kahana pilots plan to use the north launch and head around the corner to Punaluu for landings, whether they are bomb out landings or intentional ones. Please contact me if you have any questions or suggestions.

Or just leave a comment so I know people are actually reading this. Thanks!

Brazilian Ray said...

Alex, can you explain the north launch thing? do we have to launch form there too?

can we take off and top land at our regular launches??

what about (landing) at the boat ramp? (stupid question, but let's leave it clear for everybody)


Alex said...

Good question, Ray. We are temporarily lacking a permit to launch or land in the park. The regular launches are in the park. The boat ramp isn't technically in the park I don't think, but there are a lot of reasons we shouldn't try to land there.

So here's what I recommend: if possible, fly somewhere else other than Kahana on any given day (Lanikai, Makapuu, Hauula), but if you are determined to fly there then you should hike and launch from the north ridge, and then don't land in the park and also don't risk getting low over the park. Plan to land downrange, in Punaluu or anyplace around the corner. I would avoid light conditions that don't guarantee getting up, since the pastures around the corner can be challenging to hit when you're sinking out.

Let me know if that's not clear. I appreciate your question, Ray. This suspension is a little reminder for me of what it was like during the year that elapsed between Dave's ticket and our first permit.

paliglydr said...

Kahana? Where's that? I can't remember... it's been SOOOooo long since I last flew there.

I once landed in the pasture around the corner. That was an unpleasant experience and one I don't care to repeat. Where does one land in Punaluu, Alex? Is there enough room to land in your back lake, er, yard?

Alex said...

I went by Kahana today after the rain had pounded us again out here, and the LZ is once again a wide rushing river, and also the entire beach is eroded back to the treeline all the way to the boat ramp. I think we need to moor a floating LZ in the middle of the bay like they do for the acro competitions.

Brazilian Ray said...

Great Idea, Alex! would we get out permit back? - just kidding!

sandy said...

How's the North Launch for more easterly directions? I know it's the preferred launch for northerlies -- but has it been pioneered for the easterlies that it seems we're far more prone to?
Perhaps up a little higher in the red dirt patch where the spine starts climb again? (my dusty memory of the place might be tricking me!)

I think it should also be noted that the fields in Punaluu might not be very safe for easterlies (rotor off the Kahana ridge, right Braz.Ray?) -- is the beach okay? other alternatives?

or should we just stay away from Kahana in easterlies?

As the trades have returned, my thoughts turn toward Kahana ...

Alex said...

Hey Spicy, the north launch is to the north but it handles easterly wind just fine. Some say it handles it better than the normal launch (specifically, Troy and Fireman Dave). As far as landing in Punaluu, sometimes we like to land over there when the wind is too easterly to land at the normal LZ. But if we have a choice we land on the beach, not in the fields behind the trees. The fields are okay if the wind is not strong, but on a strong day I'd pick the beach every time. On a light day you might bomb out to the closest pastures, but if it's so light you're bombing out then you're not worried about rotor turbulence, you're just worried about having enough altitude to turn upwind before you flare. See you out there!