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A summer sport on the water with a Hobie Cat

Updated on August 23, 2015
Carol Reed profile image

Carol graduated from Indian Hills C.C. with an AAS in H.I.T and an AA in Arts & Science. A Social Media Booster for Wine Diamonds Film.

Sails standing at attention.

Ready For Hobie Cat Racing in South Dakota .
Ready For Hobie Cat Racing in South Dakota . | Source

Division 7

The divisions are broken down by States. The following locations are considered division 7:

Storm Lake, IA

Lewis & Clark Lake, Yankton, SD

BEYC Green Lake, MN

Lewis & Clark Lake Yankton, SD

Saylorville Lake, Iowa

Clear Lake, IA

Madtown Throwdown Madison, WI

Frayed Knot Clinton Lake, KS

Regatta 2014

Hobie Cat Beach,:
43496 Shore Dr., Yankton, SD 57069, USA

get directions

This will be held August 23, 2014. For more information on this go to the website:

Pleasure, Sport, Pleasure & Sport or Neither

Do you think you would enjoy riding on a Hobie Cat?

See results

Information about racing in the lakes and ocean.

You can find the 2014 Hobie Cat North American Championships dates and locations on the following (HCANA) / Hobie Class Association North American website,

If you are interested in participating in a Regatta they can also provide you with the information you need. This site also breaks down the divisions according to the states and explains the classes.

International Class 14, 16, 17, 18, Tiger, Wild Cat, 20: The Hobie is categorized as a class which is the same as the model type, depending on what year they were introduced and their designs. There are more models than I have mentioned.

This site also breaks down the minimum crew weight for racing each class.

Remember to be prepared.

Safety Equipment
life jacket for each person
water shoes
whistle or horn
swimsuit or wetsuit
sun glasses
small emergency kit
small waterproof floatable box or bag to protect items.
small flashlight

Regatta on the Lewis and Clarke Lake, Yankton, SD.

2010 | Source

For the enjoyment.

Picture this scene; You're one of the people sitting on the trampoline of a Hobie Cat on top of the lake, the wind pushes against the sail moving your catamaran at top speed, now you're surfing or I should say, flying the hull. The thrill of flying the hull by riding the waves. Water spraying in your face. One of the crew members decides this is a perfect time to sit in the butt bucket and ride the trapeze. Adrenaline is running high. Once the boat is level again. The crew member controlling the sails yells out, “ready about.” You and the other member gets ready to duck out of the way of the sails. Then you hear, “Hard Alee” and move to the other side of the Hobie cat. A gust of wind sends you and your crew at maximum speed. You scream as loud as your lungs will allow, then softer and then louder. Then you think to yourself, is someone else screaming too or is that your echoes? This goes on for a bit until you decide to see if the person with more experience on a catamaran sitting on the trampoline behind you is the one screaming. He isn’t, but behind your Hobie is the Coast Guard boat blaring the siren for you to pull over. A Hobie cat isn’t like a car, where you can just pull over and stop. The one steering adjusts the rudder and lets out the sails until the boat comes to a slow pace giving the Coast Guard time to catch up and say what they need to say. They want you to follow them in to shore but the wind picks up and the Hobie passes the Coast Guard. They in turn follow you to shore. Do you like the thrills and chills of water sports? If your answer is yes and if you’ve never given a Hobie a chance. I say, this summer is the best time to try but I advise that you have someone on board that knows how to sail a catamaran.

Hobie Cat / Catamaran

On a beach in Florida.
On a beach in Florida. | Source

South Dakota

Waiting for the races to begin.
Waiting for the races to begin. | Source

Glossary: Terms used in sailing a catamaran.

* Catamaran is a vessel with two hulls.

*Jib Sail is the smaller front sail.

* Mainsail is the larger rear sail.

*Hulls: There are two parallel fiberglass hulls or floats that make up the base of a Hobie cat / catamaran.

* Trampoline is what the crew sits on and is connected to the top of the Hulls.

* Mast Is the vertical poll that the sails are rigged onto. This is held up by three wires connected to the two sidestays and the forestay.

* Sidestays: There are two and they are on the sides between the mast and boat.

* Forestay: is at the front of the boat.

* Mainsheet are the ropes that go through the blocs and attach to the boom and trampoline cross-bar. However, ropes are not called ropes in sailing. They are called lines or sheets.

* Boom is the bar located at the bottom of the mainsail and runs horizontal.

* Cam cleats help with quick release of the main and Jib sheets.

*Tacking is up wind, changing the course by putting the wind on the opposite side of the sail.

* Hiking is when a member of your crew needs to move their own weight to the higher end of the catamaran to help keep the boat level.

* “Hard Alee!” is when the steering crew member yells to the rest of the crew to warn them of a quick turn of the rudder through the eye of the wind.

* Righting Line is the line used to pull up a capsized boat.

* Butt bucket / harness

The 411 on Hobie cat.

Hobie cat company makes catamaran sails, surfboards, Kayaks and standup paddle boats. Hobie cats are American made.

What's in a serial number?

1st Country: US (United States), FR (France), CN (China)

2nd Manufacturing Company: CCM (Hobie cat company in US), HCC( Hobie cat company in US), HCE (Hobie Cat Europe)

3rd Model and serial number: A letter or two followed by a series of numbers

4th Month manufactured: A - L ( A starting with January)

5th Year manufacture: Only last digit of the year is used.

6th Model year: the last two digits of the year.

Example: [US-HCC | A1234| J| 0| 11]

Added Little Cautions

** Drain plugs are located in the hull to help keep water out. Must be sure they are in before you set sail. Take out drain plugs when you’re storing your Hobie cat to allow drainage in case water did leak into hull.

** If mass is not sealed, it doesn't float, causing boat to go completely upside down also known as "Turtle".

** Only go out in wind conditions you know that you can handle.

** Requires 2 crew members with total weight of 265 pounds to be able right a capsized boat.


Regatta at Lake Pepin, MN.  Mike's Hobie is the third from the right.
Regatta at Lake Pepin, MN. Mike's Hobie is the third from the right. | Source

For the Advanced

Climax of excitement to downcast with a splash.

A Hobie cat can reach 27 miles an hour speed, enough to pull a water skier.

Heeling is when your boat leans to one side.

Flying the Hull is when heeling and the upward side of the boat is completely out of the water.

Trapeze, When one or two crew members are on the trapeze and are able to stand straight back leaning their weight off the side of the Hobie cat.

Pitchpoll is when the hulls bury in the water and the boat falls head over heels forward. It would take a huge wave to pitchpoll backwards, rare but not uncommon.

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    • Carol Reed profile imageAUTHOR

      Carol Clarke Reed 

      4 years ago from Remote

      KathrynD, thank you for the compliments and I hope you continue to enjoy my articles. I don't think anyone could be too old to try this as long as they have someone with enough experience with them and their doctor approves. I was in my late 40’s through my early 50’s. One of the people I was with was in his late 50's and by the looks of some of the others, I'd say they were older then him. I'm not a strong swimmer but I'm ok with a life jacket.

      I will admit, I was scared the time I was talked into riding a Hobie catamaran in the Florida Ocean. I couldn’t help myself, I was on constant guard, looking through the stitching upon the trampoline, watching for sharks. My fearfulness deprived me of having the greatest experience, but I still had a good time.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Great information. If I was younger, I might even what to try it. Oh yeah if I knew how to swim would be an asset too! Truly enjoy your articles Carol!


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