The Leading Edge is a coffee table book capturing the unique kite surfing culture in Auckland, New Zealand through stories from 18 iconic riders. Supported by the incredible photography from Mike Peffers Photography, the book’s purpose is to capture the rise of the kitesurfing culture and to inspire the audience.

Mike Peffers Photography


Living in Bucklands Beach, Mike would see the local kite surfers on Eastern Beach as he drove down his driveway. It was from the driveway that he shot the first photographs of the kites on his new 75-300mm lens. As he acquired new gear, he started shooting the kite surfers down on Eastern Beach, getting in the water to get closer to the action, which is where he loves to be.


After putting a few of his photos up on Facebook, Kent McNish tracked him down and introduced him to the sport properly, and the wider kite surfing community in Auckland. This led to him sponsoring the second Kite Surf for Kids fundraiser and repeating this again for the 2016 event.


From a photographer’s perspective, the vibe of the beach culture, with the colours of the kites, helps create great opportunities for photographs. Looking back on his earlier photographs at Eastern Beach to now, there has been a lot of progression. A bit like kite surfing, Mike is always striving to improve his photography and try new ways of capturing the sport.     


For Mike, shooting kite surfing is the next best thing to kitesurfing itself.


You can check more of Mike’s work here :


Tom Crosse Design

Tom first got involved with kitesurfing when he re-located up to Auckland and moved into a flat with some old friends from Wellington. Joel, one of the flatties had a few sets of kitesurfing gear and was looking for a buddy to learn with. After some quick You-Tube tutorials, Tom deemed himself educated enough to give it a go and they were blown offshore at Orewa to be picked up by the very disgruntled Coast Guard.

Tom was exposed to the culture of kitesurfing from wherever he was untangling his lines from, he would watch the riders having a blast out there; it only further motivated him to learn. Tom decided to create a kitesurfing club at Unitec where he was studying a Bachelor of Visual Arts and Animation. This led him to discover the Auckland University Kite Club and after they inherited the full membership of his own club (just him), he made some special friendships with a group of like-minded people.

His mother is a mad keen paddle surfer and her place is littered with publications on surfing. Being fairly new to the sport and with a deadline for university looming on the horizon Tom contacted Mike and they took on the goliath task of creating The Leading Edge.

Honourable Mentions

Clare Strawson

The Editor for this publication, being a talented kite surfer herself Clare did an amazing job dicing up content and restructuring it to make it an engaging read to viewers. Without Clare the stories in the publication would be big blocks of intimidating text, now they invite readers into these inspiring stories.

Greg Hall

Thank you for your guidance and patience with this project.

A digital marketing wizard

The Families

Thank you for all your support.

Samuel Graves

Incredible footage, thanks to you and Ben for you patience.

The Kiters

With out you this publication wouldn’t have ever been made possible. I hope that this book will give back to the community and inspire people to get out there and on the water. Keep shredding, you’re awesome and it has been a delight to have to opportunity to meet you and see you in your element.

Georgia Lloyd-Burgess 

For taking on the role as sub-editor.


Kite Surfers of the gusty city.

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