Dive into our overview below, and be sure to return for the complete review soon.
The Carve is an exceptional kite designed for carving up waves, barrel tucks, and strapless tricks. They have engineered the Carve with a stable, lower aspect ratio design, allowing for fast pivot turns and excellent drift. The kite provides a direct feel in both bar pressure and steering initiation. For the 2023 edition, they have categorized the Carve specifically for wave riding.
The bridling has been refined to allow for longer and more progressive travel, resulting in a smoother and more responsive experience throughout the entire depower range. The Carve remains reactive even when sheeted out to the very end. The improved balance enhances drift, allowing the kite to glide effortlessly down the line, waiting for bar input. This intuitive control is especially beneficial when the kite is not visible during maneuvers such as big bottom turns, cutbacks, or barrel rides, allowing surfers to focus entirely on the waves.
The Carve features a slightly reduced leading-edge diameter and thinned-out profiles, resulting in smoother power delivery, an expanded high-end wind range, and the ability to ride deeper in the pocket for longer periods. The kite provides a stable pull without aggressively pulling riders off their rail, delivering softer landings during big jumps. Additionally, the 2023 Carve offers faster relaunch in critical situations.
To improve performance, lighter bladders have been introduced in all sizes, along with a lighter 2-ply canopy reinforcement. This reduction in weight enhances turning speed in light wind conditions, while maintaining the Carve’s durability. The Carve now flies faster, generating increased power and board speed, and excels at going upwind. Experienced riders will appreciate its impressive power and efficiency, while intermediate riders will enjoy its smoother and more user-friendly ride. Freeride and Strapless Freestyle enthusiasts will benefit from improved hangtime, catch for kite loops, and softer landings.
The Carve’s longer travel provides improved drift and smoother response. By utilizing the full range of travel, the kite offers better drift and remains reactive even when sheeted out. Although the light bar pressure has been sacrificed for improved drift and responsiveness, this allows riders to generate less speed during bottom turns and ride closer to the pocket of the wave. The Carve offers an extremely direct feel in both bar pressure and steering initiation, providing intuitive feedback from the bar in both directions.
The re-engineered construction enhances strength and elongation control, protecting the lighter inner canopy and improving steering and depower responsiveness. The lightweight 2-ply canopy reinforcement improves static balance and light wind performance without compromising strength and durability. The lighter weight contributes to the kite’s improved drift and overall behavior, reducing the tendency to front stall in light wind conditions.
The Carve now offers an improved wind range, with increased high-end stability and hangtime. Strapless freestyle riders will appreciate the enhanced hangtime and catch, allowing them to stay in the air longer and perform kite loops with ease. Given the Carve’s impressive power and efficiency, it is recommended to choose a size smaller for wave riding. This reduction in size not only decreases weight but also enhances steering and drift.
Furthermore, the reduced leading-edge diameter provides a smoother power delivery, allowing riders to sit deeper in the pocket. The larger leading-edge design and reduced curve through the main body of the canopy minimize canopy movement or deformation at lower attack angles or when the kite is sheeted out. The kite’s position further back in the window ensures it will move with the rider, rather than stalling or flying forward.
With a narrower span and less power, the Carve delivers fast flight and tighter turns. The construction creates a smooth transition from the segmented leading edge to the curved canopy, resulting in more uniform profiles and a smoother and more efficient kite with improved airflow, drive, and stability.
The design places most of the usable area in the center of the kite, rather than the wingtip. This, coupled with the lower aspect, maintains efficiency for its size and facilitates quick relaunching. When the Carve is on the water, the reduced leading edge prevents it from laying flat, allowing for fast and easy relaunch by simply rotating the bar. This feature is particularly useful for riders dealing with waves and needing swift relaunch during incoming sets.
For a lighter and more forgiving feel, riders can use the attachment point closest to the wingtip. If a more direct steering and shorter depower travel is desired, the lines can be moved forward on the wingtip, providing increased bar pressure.
The Carve utilizes a kevlar reinforced strut system with bridle deflectors for added strength and control. The kite is accompanied by generously sized bags featuring corrosion-free zippers, stash pockets, air vents, and an external control system pocket. The bags also boast ergonomic shoulder and chest straps.
The Carve features the N-HTRS High Performance high tenacity ripstop canopy, delivering power, reactivity, and control. With its increased speed, power, and board speed, the 2023 Carve has become a fantastic option for wave sessions.
According to North Kite Designer Dano See and Brand Director Mike Raper, the Carve offers significant control and is perfect for an exhilarating wave session.