Myrtle Point Park is a public area with walking trails and a small beach on the Patuxent River in St. Mary’s County. It is just about a mile away from the Governor Thomas Johnson Bridge, which connects St. Mary’s County and Calvert County. At the entrance, I was a little surprised to find out that daily park fee was $7 for county residents. Nothing like putting some pressure on me to get some good pictures! In the end it worked out fine, but maybe next time I’ll bring a bathing suit too just in case the kite doesn’t work out.
After about a half mile walk from my car, I reached the beach. It wasn’t completely crowded, but there were people lining the whole edge of the beach, which made me a little nervous about lifting the camera over them with a kite. Of course, safety is always the most important goal, and I didn’t want to risk hitting someone with it. The other issue was that, even though trees along the drive seemed to indicate there should be enough wind (as did the weather report), there didn’t seem to be as much near the ground on the beach. I brought both the Mini Dopero and the Rokker, but the wind conditions definitely seemed to signal that the Rokker would be the right one for the job. After a few minutes it was set up, and I was pleased to find that it wanted to fly out of my hand as I held the bridle to attach the kite line. After the line was attached, that steady breeze disappeared for a little while, but the kite was up in the air again after a few launch attempts.
The next challenge was finding a good “home base” location for the KAP session. I had originally found a place near the edge of the water that seemed acceptable, but some families with young children moved in close to me, and I didn’t feel comfortable lifting the camera with the kite so close to them. Eventually, I spied a corner of the beach without many people where the sand narrowed and the grass and shrubs started encroaching — not a great place to relax on the beach, but fine for flying a kite. So, with the kite already flying 100 feet in the air or so, I gathered up all my gear and towed it over to that corner. Then I screwed my dog stake into the ground, which would be used to secure the kite line while I attached the KAP rig, testing to make sure it was screwed into a solid base of soil beneath the top layer of sand.
After a few more minutes of flying, I was feeling confident in the kite, conditions, and location, so I wrapped the winder around the dog stake, attached the KAP rig, turned it on, and started letting out line again. The conditions were somewhat challenging, with the wind varying from about 8 to 20 mph and plenty of strong thermals, but the Rokker handled it all with ease. I was really glad to have this kite, because the session may not have been possible without it. The Mini Dopero could have handled the gusts fine, but launching would have been a challenge with the lighter wind near the ground and lack of space on the beach. At least half the time, the wind was definitely too strong for the larger Barn Door kite. So the Rokker really proved its worth today. I even managed to capture a short video of the kite flying with the camera attached (best viewed in HD 1080p).
I ended up with lots of good pictures in all directions, but my favorites were the ones looking south towards the bridge, with Solomons Island and the Patuxent River Naval Air Station in clear view off in the distance (like the one at the top of the page). Plenty of boats and jet skis also served as nice elements in many of the pictures. Check them out below, and also in my Myrtle Point Park KAP gallery.