Today, kiteboarding is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. The sport of kiteboarding draws upon the daring side of the rider. It offers
excitement which fulfills adrenaline junkies. The feeling of flight and high speed along with surf and swell has become very appealing to many water sports enthusiasts. With advancements in equipment and lessons, along with perfect conditions, more and more people are choosing to learn kiteboarding in the Columbia River Gorge. This exciting sport combines several of the water sports including wakeboarding, windsurfing, paragliding and surfing — plus learning to control a kite while skimming along the water. While all the wind and water sports are born from similar backgrounds, rigging and taking off require different skills and space.

A bit of history

In 1989, kiteboarding was discovered when Cory Roeseler strapped his feet to stock water skis. With three rectangular colorful kites, he took off across the Columbia River into a crowd of surprised windsurfers. Today, kiteboarding is one of the fastest growing sports in the world.

An adventurous kiteboarder gets the thrill of riding large waves and swells created by a nearby barge in the Gorge

Why is it so windy in the Columbia River Gorge?

The Columbia River winds through the Cascade Mountains, bordering the states of Washington and Oregon from the Eastern deserts to the Pacific Ocean 200 miles to the west. The river’s low-elevation channel moves through miles of mountains. The pressure difference across the Cascade Mountains makes air flow from one side to the other. In the summer, the cold, dense marine air from the west meets the hot and dry air out in the east. The higher the pressure difference— the stronger the wind.

For more details about launch sites, amenities and skill levels, please click on the map below.

Wind sports map of launch sites in the Columbia River Gorge for both Washington and Oregon
Doug’s premier outdoor shop is Hood River’s only complete full-service skate, ski and snowboard store



Here at Doug’s Water Sports we pride ourselves on teaching to the highest standard. This means providing you with everything you’ll need to become a confident, independent kiteboarder, wing surfer, or E-foiler. Our lessons focus on doing everything in the safest and most informative way while also providing a fun and personalized lesson experience. We’re the first school on the right hand side as you pull into the Event Site parking lot.

101 Oak Street, Hood River, OR     541-386-5787     visit website