places to ride SPI

 

SPI has plenty of options for both flat water riding and wave riding. If it’s windy, there’s always a place to ride. Call us or stop by the Prokite shop for more info on SPI’s spots. 

 

South Flats

Free, excellent flatwater, good in all wind directions and for all experience levels, good vehicle access and dry parking close to the launch. Lots of room and rarely overcrowded. South Flats is where Prokite sets up for lessons and rides most of the time.

HOW TO GET THERE: (Two ways) First left after passing the SPI Convention center, you will see an unpaved road leading to wide bayside beach access. Head around the perimeter to the far right (N) corner up by the water. Or, use the north parking lot behind the convention center.

POTENTIAL HAZARDS: Safe for all vehicles but try to stay on hardpack paths and go around deep puddles. Some are deeper than they look. 

 

North Flats

Vehicle access to what is known as the North Flats has been restricted for the time being, but a new public wind park with parking, launch area, restrooms and more is now in the permitting process. In the meantime, kite with us at all of SPI’s other great spots and feel free to reach out to SPI’s city council and let them know how much you appreciate bay access for kiting in South Padre Island: https://www.myspi.org/mobile/council/

 

 

 

 

 

 

Isla Blanca Park a.k.a. “The Jetty”

A great place to ride S and SE wind and waves. Also popular foil and wing spot especially when surf is small. Ocean conditions vary day-to-day and offer something for everyone. Those just starting out in the ocean will enjoy flat days or forgiving small waves to practice ocean riding. Intermediate/expert waveriders will enjoy frequent wind swells and clean powerful groundswells. 

About the park: The “crown jewel” of SPI’s many miles of beach access with vibrant intermingling community of various watersports enthusiasts. All the perks of a county park: Beachfront parking, restrooms and showers. Beautiful and well-maintained beach spot for the entire family. Pass required: A daily/weekly/monthly/yearly pass gets you access to Isla Blanca Park, Andy Bowie Park, and Edwin King Atwood Park

HOW TO GET THERE: Simply drive south from any point on SPI’s main road (Padre Boulevard) until you reach the entrance kiosk. 

POTENTIAL HAZARDS: Keep this spot open to kiteboarding by respecting the following rules: Don’t ride through swimmers or surfers, don’t fly over people’s heads on the beach, find uncrowded space to launch and land. Experienced kiters only.

End-of-the-road

Soft sandy beachside launch spot with paved roadside parking. A Prokite team favorite in fall&winter for north-to-south downwinders. (see notes on downwinders below). Never crowded. Wave conditions vary. 

HOW TO GET THERE: Simply drive north from any point on SPI’s main boulevard. From the Prokite shop, it is approximately 8 miles to the end of the paved road (Highway 100). Enjoy the pristine, undeveloped coastal scenery. 

DOWNWINDERS: Various take-out options include free parking at County Beach Access #3 & #4, any point on the side of the road, or Andy Bowie Park or Edwin King Atwood Park (county park pass required). In NE/NNE wind, you can pick a spot in town as wind shadow from buildings won’t be present.

For a 6-mile downwinder, use #4 as your takeout point to avoid windshadow from The Shores (#4 entrance is past The Shores on the right).

For a 2.7-mile downwinder, land at beach access 6.  

POTENTIAL HAZARDS: It’s possible to come across broken glass, so keep an eye out. Kiting alone from this spot is highly discouraged as you are unlikely to cross paths with any other kiters or beachgoers for miles. 

Holly Beach

Excellent flatwater riding.  Experienced kiters only as there is poor/no downwind takeout options.  Also the bottom is not foot friendly, surf boots are recommended or don’t put your feet down out there.  SE and E wind.  We hit Holly when SE is very light on the Island, temperature difference thermal bumps wind strength 10mph more than on Island. 

HOW TO GET THERE: Accessed by Holly Beach road, first right after passing the Golf Course in Laguna Vista.  Accessible by all vehicles, but do not go in if road is wet, even with 4×4.  Road is like concrete when dry but extremely soft and deep mud when wet.  Follow Holly Beach road all the way back to water it gets there eventually, take last left to park in parking area on North (downwind) side of small house/hunting shack, launch from \’cove area\’ below parking area.  About 25 minute drive.

Boca Chica Beach

A long drive from the Island, but a great adventure spot.  Excellent clean surf in N winds.  Great view of new SpaceX facility too. Opposite side of the jetties from Isla Blanca Park.

HOW TO GET THERE: Take hwy 48 to Brownsville, find hwy 4 (boca chica blvd) and follow all the way back to the coast.  You are still in USA but will go through a small border patrol check point on the way so bring your IDs.  4×4 may be required: the road ends at the beach about a mile south of the Jetty, beach driving required to get up to the good stuff by the Jetty.  Typically the beach is hard pack and accessible to all vehicles but it is possible sand is soft or deep, be prepared.  About 45-60 minute drive.

 

Ocean Beaches

All SPI beaches are open to kiteboarding, there are [amazingly] no restrictions on where we can launch or ride. Lets keep it that way:  RESPECT other beach users, don’t launch in a crowd or fly over peoples heads, find open space to launch and land, if it is crowded move on.  Don’t ride hard near shore or through swimmers or surfers.  Experienced kiters only,  Thank you!!

HOW TO GET THERE: Dozens of free public beach access points within SPI city proper, several with public restrooms. Access via Gulf Blvd.

Those with 4WD vehicles can access dozens of miles of pristine beach for free using beach access #6.

To drive on the beach without 4WD, use Edwin King Atwood Park (pass required). Be careful of high tide and storm surge.

 

The Ditch

Excellent flatwater riding. Good for all experience levels. SE and E wind.

HOW TO GET THERE: Take hwy 48W towards Brownsville, pass the Jaime Zapata boat ramp and parking lot area, u-turn at the end of the hwy divider and begin heading back towards the boat ramp.  Pull off hwy 48E at the base of the small hill (about 1/4 from u-turn and before reaching the boat ramp).  Follow dirt paths across the flatland to the waters edge.  Typically launch from a small ‘cove’ a little to the left (East) of where the main paths reach the water, but there are other possible launch spots as well in both directions.  About 25min drive.

POTENTIAL HAZARDS: Generally foot friendly, a few scattered obstacles in the shallows near shore but 90% ok.  Accessible by all vehicles, but do not go in if ground is wet, even with 4×4.  Paths to the water are hard as concrete when dry, extremely soft and deep mud when wet. 


The Laguna Madre, South Padre Island, TX