A change in character for the Rhino which was very popular. Much more feline than wild animal now, and North have come up with a real gem for fast riders who want a kite that’s going to behave, be quick and responsive from light bar pressure. An unhooked dream, and we can’t speak highly enough of North’s innovative depower system and adjustable stopper
point. The only slight worry is how much the quick release will be compromised if it is full of sand. Shame, as last year’s
release was perfect.
North have tested, refined and tuned their kites to satisfy just about any user. The Rhino has been classed in the expert rider category to be smooth and fast with a good low end, without losing top end range. In keeping with the Rhino’s past pedigree, there’s enough height in jumps and hang time to keep the most air hungry pilot happy.
TEST TEAM NOTES:
NEAL: I think the bar system’s brilliant. Not only has the depower adjuster got a really nice cleat with elastic over the top so it slots straight in wherever you want it, you know it’ll stay in there too. But the other thing that’s so pleasing is you’ve got a super-easy adjustment option to move the stopper and depower system to where you want on the centre line. That’s genius.
GEORGE: So rather than undoing the chicken loop and the bowline you just click that and move it. Anyone can tailor the bar for themselves in seconds. That’s one thing people never bother to do. They get their kite out the bag and fly it as it is. One of the most important things to do to help your riding style is position the chickenloop range correctly. You want an upright body position, not a toilet one.
JAKE: I think it is quite slow turning, but I guess it was light when I was on it. But unhooking is the best point of the kite.
You can try anything and it will stay where it is, and it’s powerful when unhooked.
NEAL: Jake I’m surprised you found that kite didn’t turn. I think it is total finesse.
GEORGE: I just wanted to keep unhooking and looping and doing stuff.
NEAL: It’s a very different animal to the previous Rhinos, which have stood out for grunt and lift. They’ve definitely changed
their remit. That kite is leaning towards this hybrid that we keep hearing rumours of. It’s slightly lower aspect, it’s flatter...that’s where I think North are heading. If you want it calm and cruisy, it can do that and you’re more than happy to unhook and let it do what it wants to.
7, 9, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18 and 20m
This test is in issue #21