Jabberwock Beach is more than just the home of Kitesurf Antigua, its actually the birthplace of kitesurfing on the island. It was already known as one of the hot spots for windsurfing back in the day, but for kiting It all started around 2000 when Eli Fuller and Alex Portman caught wind of this crazy new sport and decided to take the plunge. They brought some kite gear down to the island and set off to learn on their own. It was tough love back then, trial and error, and a healthy portion of luck. There were no schools offering proper instruction, and it was difficult to find much helpful information online at all. After finding what little safety info they could from online forums they started scouting the island’s many beaches and eventually settled on Jabberwock. It was one of the only beaches that had onshore to side-on conditions which are prefect for learning. It also happened to be one of the longest beaches on the island with clean, unobstructed wind, and easy access from a main road. And so Jabberwock became known as ‘kite beach’ and there began the life of kitesurfing in Antigua.
Shortly after fortifying Jabberwock as ‘kite beach’, Andre Phillip, Nikolai Bohachevski, Adam Anton and a few others got into the sport and it wasn’t long before they had a solid local crew riding at Jabberwock on a regular basis….i.e. every windy day. As more and more people began to take interest in the sport they realized that there was much need for a school, as the dangers of learning without proper tuition became quite evident with news of accidents happening around the world. So Eli and Alex decided start a kitesurfing school. Kitesurf Antigua was born in 2001 and Andre was its first instructor, but he didn’t hold this position very long for as he progressed in kiting, so did his desire to hit the World Tour and start competing. Once Andre left for the PKRA Adam took over the school in 2002. He ran it for just over a year and ended up handing over the reigns to Nikolai after suffering a knee injury. Nik ran the school for a couple years until Adam came back, and he’s been running the school ever since.
Over the years we’ve seen Jabberwock evolve in subtle ways. Trees and grass have grown in thick, the sand comes and goes with the tides and swells. New and old faces show up each season, as do the kickers, rails, and other features that have been built and dismantled there. But one thing that has always remained the same at Jabberwock is the vibe. Its always been a place where people gather from all over the world with one thing in mind, to ride and have a good time. Countless friendships have been made there, and when the beach is active the camaraderie is ripe in the air. There is always that feeling when you pull up in your car, high hopes of strong wind, warm water and friendly faces, and Jabberwock knows how to deliver.
If you do decide to learn how to kite surf in Antigua, or just want to come have a session, you really need to come check out Kitesurf Antigua at Jabberwock beach. Bring your friends, pack a cooler with some beers and expect to spend the entire day. You never know who you’ll run into there, but chances are you’ll make some great new friends ;)