It is so close I can literally taste it… Summer. Every morning I wake up, walk down to the beach and smell the ocean which makes my mouth water for warm waves and breezes to sail. After being away for several years in the military and some time living abroad, I got back home to pick up where I’d left off in 2002. Five years ago it was navigating the paddleboard, then a year later carving on the vintage short board, following that I hopped back on a noserider, but there was one thing missing from my arsenal of old school fun. That’s right… a Hobie cat!
The max return of fun to effort ratio! Maximum reward for patience, knowledge of the wind, waves and anticipation. And as some people point out, it’s the most amount of fun you can have with your clothes on!
A few years back I decided to go in with a friend and buy a used Hobie 16. I’ll admit at first it was a little nerve racking to set sail out into the wide Atlantic Ocean, with only the wind as my propulsion. However, after 4 years of trips and experiencing a wide range of conditions, soloing has now become more fun than intimidating. Moments like running down a ground swell at 12 knots, while the spray cools you off from the heat of the sun… are a instant rush!
For anyone with a depth of knowledge in sailing, or who’s grown up surfing Florida’s east coast, I would recommend considering a catamaran purchase. For us soul-surfers who enjoy the solitude of surfing, sailing beach-cats is a natural step in progression. You can utilize all the ocean knowledge you have gained like interpreting wind conditions and estimating time between sets and apply it to sailing beach-cats. It’s how you deduce that information that is slightly different from before. I’d compare it to stepping into algebra after only knowing general mathematics. Sailing is a challenge every time I do it, and after every trip I am filled with that same stoke I get from surfing.
So whether you fly a kite, surf, or sail a Hobie, the wind and waves play an integral part of our coastal culture. We come to the beach to enjoy it and should be passing our love and knowledge down to the younger generations, so they will continue and care for this amazing resource. And if you happen to see someone sailing a catamaran off the beach here in Flagler, Ormond or Daytona… feel free to try and coax them in so you can ask all the questions your heart desires. Whether they come in or not is a whole other question. Contributed by Michael Ceribelli
Michael was born and raised in Florida and has spent his life surfing, swimming, sailing and working on the beach. He also enjoys the inland life on dirt bikes, ATV’s, boating and tubing our many chain lakes and springs. He believes strongly in preserving the ways of Florida life.
Michael is the owner of Frankie Alice’s Beachside Boutique in Flagler Beach and looks forward to meeting new friends everyday!
I found this old picture of my first Flagler Beach sailing experience with the Sokol Family…
a memory I will forever cherish!
How can you not love the sight of a sail floating along on the horizon?
It is magical.
local sailboat art painted by me…and available for purchase 🙂
Cheers to new adventures and thanks of course for being here!