Farewell to Hobart Alter, father of the Hobie Cats

hobie alterPalm Desert (Calif.)At age 80, devoured by an incurable disease, Hobart Alter, the father of the legendary Hobie Cat, passed away. Alter began his business in the late 1950s with surfboards. Together with his partner Grubby Clark, he began making fiberglass boards in replacements for the heavier balsa boards.In the 1960s the popularity of surfing grew by leaps and bounds (in 1959 the film “Gidget” introduced the nation to the subculture of California surfing revisited with Hollywood artifice), and Alter was good at taking advantage of this, moreover, sponsoring the great surfers of the time and growing his business.

hobie-catSAILING FOR ALL
In 1967 the insight that also made him great in the sailing world: the creation of the Hobie Cat. Until then, beach catamarans, made of wood or heavy fiberglass, were difficult to handle. After making his bones by making a few small detachable catamarans, he put his 14-foot detachable, wheelable catamaran on sale for $999, achieving unexpected success. From there the company began the production of numerous catamarans, which have colonized all the seaside resorts of the world. Thanks to Alter first surfing and then sailing became within everyone’s reach: not for nothing was he nicknamed the “Henry Ford of big waves.” Gone is a piece of sailing history. Below is a documentary about his story as a man, surfer, sailor and entrepreneur.

HOBIE STORY – THE DOCUMENTARY – PART 1

PART 2


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