Best Wakestyle-Wave Crossover
Size tested: 9, 12m Suggested retail: $1,170; $1400 (9, 12m—kite only)
Sizes available: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14m
Test Team Report
The fourth generation of the Naish Park continues to deliver a unique performance blend that caters to the rider who enjoys both surf sessions and more advanced freestyle. The Test Team riders found the 2014 version has the same consistent performance character of last year’s favorite but with slightly smoother and faster pull and increased stability through the turns and to edge of the window. The Park has a rock-solid canopy with more stability through the gusts and less on/off power when sheeting-in and -out than earlier versions. It pushes upwind well and drives easily whether you’re riding a surfboard or twin-tip. The Park also pivots well on a single wing tip and grants little pull as it changes direction, which is awesome for waveriding or transitioning to the spot on the wave where you need to be. The three-strut frame is well-balanced and light, and therefore drifts consistently with no line pressure, making it ideal for slashing bottom turns and smacking the lip. The Park 12m was one of the smoother flying kites in the size range, with consistent handling and good jumping ability. The 12m seems slightly larger than some of the others in its size range, but its smooth power and better low-end power more than make up for it. The 9m is a standout in versatility, with quick pivotal turns and smooth power delivery in every angle of attack and across the wind window. It has good levels of depower and range with lots of throw that can tame out the gusty blasts. It stays nicely parked when you want to ride flatwater freestyle and throw down, and it offers some amazing drift and slack when you need it to. The Park continues as a standout three-strut kite that feels both balanced and ready for action whether you’re throwing down in the flatwater or charging the surf.
Some of the Test Team riders preferred the old Park’s extra tuning options available for the kite bridle settings that are absent in this model. There is an upper-end wind range to the Park where it continues to pull and requires checking the kite’s speed with a solid edge.
Intermediate- to advanced-level riders who want one kite that can push the limits in the wave and wakestyle disciplines.