How To Get Involved In Sailing
All ages and skill levels are welcome at Hatteras Sailing
Regardless of age, you are invited to get involved with our Community Sailing Organization, Hatteras Sailing. The best way to jump in is to start learning to sail in a sailing camps or adult training sessions. These camps and training sessions are designed to teach the basics to beginners and grow on those skills as you progress. You can take learn to sail camp or training multiple times until you feel you are ready to jump into weekly sailing practice.
Step 1: Learn To Sail
Sailing programs are broken into age brackets that make sense for the types of boats we sail and the age range of the participants. Our goal is to make sailing affordable and fun for Hatteras Island Residents. All seasonal and permanent residents are eligible for scholarship to make these educational programs affordable. It’s super simple and not embarrassing, complete this short scholarship application form. Once the scholarship is approved, we will send you a coupon code to register online.
Opti Kids Camp
5-8 yrs old
Opti kids camp is for 5-8 year olds who are just getting comfortable in the water and not quite ready to go into a boat alone.
- Swimming and playing
- Double handed sailing
- Reduced sail area
- Variety of activities
- Entry level knowledge skills
Taught by one head coach and one experienced Optimist Sailor.
7-12 yrs old
Explore Sailing camp is for 7-12 year olds who feel very comfortable in the water. These campers want to learn sail their own boat.
- Maximize time in boats
- Learn to rig
- More knowledge
- Sailing solo
Taught by one head coach and one assistant coach who is an experienced Optimist racing sailor.
Intro to C420
13-21 yrs old
Intro to Collegiate 420 Sailing is the best way to learn to sail if you are middle school to college aged. International high school and college sailors compete on this very boat.
- Two handed boat
- Experienced skippers paired with beginners
- Learn on same boat sailed in college and high school sailing
Taught by two head coaches and assistant jr. coaches with coach boat support.
21+ yrs old
Adult training sessions are taught on the Flying Scot dinghys with a variety of boats introduced as you progress in knowledge and skills.
- Learn basic sailing knowledge and terminology
- Dingy sailors make the best big boat sailors
- Get experience on the big boats as well.
Taught by one head coach and one experienced Optimist Sailor.
Step 2: Come To Sailing Practice and Our Regattas
Once you’ve attended a camp or training session, you should have the basics down. You know how to rig and launch your boat. You’ve learned the basic knots you need and you feel comfortable as a crew or skipper in your boat. Now, you need to practice. The more time you spend on the water, the better and more confident you will become. Sailing, like most other sports gets more fun as you get better. In sailing, practice is also a safety factor. You become a safer sailor as you grow in confidence and competence.
Attend a local Regatta. Hatteras Sailing organizes two regattas each year. Inn May we host the Wind n’ Waves Regatta and in September the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse Regatta. Even if you aren’t quite ready to sail in the regatta, you should participate with the race committee as an observer. Nothing is more inspiring than watching your fellow sailors compete and cheering them on. You learn so much when you are right there on the starting line or riding along with a coach in the support boat.
Step 3: Compete in Regattas
Once you’ve witnessed a regatta as a race committee volunteer and you are comfortable sailing as the skipper – it is time to begin sailing in regattas. You may be thinking, “I just want to sail for fun, and I don’t want to compete”.
BUT…Racing is the best way to extend and strengthen sailing skills.
During sailboat racing, we push ourselves to sail beyond our skills and grow in a controlled environment with more experience sailors. This prepares a sailor to develop the quick-thinking skills needed to be safe sailing out on the ocean or in the sound where conditions can change instantly and unexpectedly. HCS recommends that all sailors participate in regattas and racing as part of sailing education. Racing pushes you to be safer when you “just want to have fun sailing”.
Step 4: Membership
Become a member to benefit yourself and all the sailors of Hatteras Community Sailing. Membership involves volunteering your time supporting the organization, serving on the board or a committee, and/or owning a fleet boat. Annual dry storage and water storage at the Sailing Center is available to HCS Members. Your membership benefits include discounts on activities, a larger variety of sailing opportunities such as cruising vacations, learning to sail the bigger boats, cruising education, and learning liveaboard sailing skills as you progress towards being a competent and independant bareboat sailor.
Are you ready to get involved? Still have questions, just ask.
Don’t be afraid to ask. We have so much fun sailing. No questions are too basic. Let us know your sailing goals, any questions, and how you want to be involved. Our mission is to help you get involved with sailing. Hatteras Community Sailing provides sailing instruction and competition to youth and adults on Hatteras Island, NC to inspire independence, seamanship, and respect for nature. We provide lessons, classes, and camps to teach sailing, water safety, boat safety, and boat maintenance. We sponsor local and regional sailing competitions to promote the sport. We use sailing to build skill, character, and self-confidence for all the participants.
Our goal is to nurture beginners into skilled and confident sailors who will be a lifelong credit to Hatteras Community Sailing and the larger Cape Hatteras and Outer Banks Communities. Hatteras Sailing is a volunteer, not-for-profit organization overseen by a volunteer Board of Directors. We think it is really healthy to be outside in real life (#IRL) and experience nature. We are all blessed to live on one of the most beautiful islands in the world. We encourage our members to take out the boats as often as they can, sail together, respect nature, and enjoy our beautiful ocean and sound. We make safety and socializing “IRL” a priority and emphasize having fun.