Home to the best ocean side riding in New England, the southside of Nantucket can produce some incredible downwinders and breaking wave conditions. There are public access points throughout the south shore: Tom Nevers, Cisco, & Madaket are three great options. If you are going to ride the south side, be sure that you are a confident rider who can handle getting out past surf and other breaking waves.
All of the beaches along the South Side are beautiful in their own right. As the sand moves along with storms you will find the beach can grow and shrink in a specific spot by day. As you are riding, be wary of shoals and sandbars and always have your exit route planned. Additionally, South Side beaches are used heavily throughout the seasons – be wary of other beach goers, both within the water, and out of the water and make sure to respect everyone else on the beach.
One of our favorite things to do is to go on long down winders along the southern shore. If you go, be sure to go with more than one person, let people (outside of your group too) know the float plan, and setup alternate plans in case something goes wrong.
Best Months: May, June, July, August, September, October
Best Direction: SE, SSE, S, W, SW, WNW
Main Direction: SE
Other Rideable Directions: E
Type of riding: Twintip, Surfboard
Type of Launch: The size of the launch depends on the tide. At low tide there is a large beach to rig on. At high tide there is less space.
Hazards: Shells, boats, bystanders, Large swell
Nantucket Airport: Southside downwinders are one of the most things you can do while kitesurfing on Nantucket. That being said the Nantucket Airport runway ends directly on the shoreline of Nantucket on Nobadeer Beach. There is a two mile radius exclusion zone around the airport – Either end your downwinder prior to entering the zone, land your kite and walk past it, or ride two miles offshore to stay clear of the zone. See Figure 1
Type of water: Flat water slick, Chop
Madaket: Follow Madaket Ave towards the ocean. Take the last Left which is Chicago St. then park in the dirt lot by the water.
Cisco: Follow Cisco Beach Access Rd to the large dirt parking lot at the end.
Tom Nevers: Follow Tom Nevers Road all the way to the end. Take a right at the first fork and follow the road around the baseball field and outdoor hockey rink. Once you pass the rink park in the dirt parking lot by the water.