I first must begin with the definition of Island Head because….well, it rocks! Island Head is “a state of mind achieved by following one’s passion in the right place with the right people; if it’s only for a day or a lifetime…” This could not sum up the owners of Island Head (Michael, Taylor & Jessica) and their passion for enjoying the beauty & adventure this island has to offer any more perfectly.
Island Head Watersports offers parasailing, jet ski rentals, banana boating, stand
up paddle boarding (SUP) and SUP yoga. My good friend Jenn & I decided to end a long days work with parasailing, because why not fly 400 feet above Hilton Head Island to cap off a Monday?
Island Head Watersports is based out of Palmetto Bay Marina on Broad Creek, less than 2 miles from the main gate of Sea Pines just below the cross island bridge. Jenn & I arrived at the Marina about 15 minutes prior to launch time, right on schedule, and after signing the liability waiver waited for our 5pm departure. We were quickly greeted by First Mate Jessica who informed us we may be a little late departing due to some questionable weather in the area. Afternoon storms are the norm here during the summer months but usually they pass through quickly. But safety is a priority and I was grateful Island Head was taking precautions. After a brief delay, we got the green light and boarded the 31ft Ocean Pro with Captain Taylor at the wheel and First Mate Jessica.
As soon as we pulled away from the dock, Jessica began explaining the gear and details about take-off & landing. Captain Taylor then gave us a brief reality check by explaining the procedures if a line broke or there was a malfunction. Palmetto Bay Marina is truly the perfect location because it’s only a 10 minute boat ride at idle speed out of Broad Creek and into Calibogue Sound. And they use this time well. By the time we were in the sound, all riders were geared up and ready to fly. Also, passengers have the opportunity to get a glimpse of the stunning homes overlooking Broad Creek.
Riding side by side, Jenn & I were first for liftoff. From a seated position on the back of the boat, we were gently lifted into the air by the large red, white & blue parasail. We then went higher, and higher, and higher….until all you could hear was the wind in the sail behind us.
There is by far no better view of Hilton Head than by parasail! (ok…maybe if you fly in by airplane you may get a better view but that doesn’t count) We had a bird’s eye view of several islands around the southern tip of Hilton Head, such as Baratara Island, Bull Island, Daufuskie Island, as well as beautiful marshland and other local waterways. You could even see the ocean on the other side of the Hilton Head! It was spectacular. And the afternoon clouds made for an even more stunning backdrop for our flight. One of the other riders talked about seeing dolphins and even a sea turtle below them.
I have been on other parsailing trips and a dunk into the water at the end is to be expected. Captain Taylor was nice…he gracefully lowered us into the water for
our “dunk” but only got the bottom parts of our legs wet. Lets just say my previous experiences were not this pleasant. After another brief flight, we were slowly lowered back to the boat. This is when Jenn & I looked at each other and said…”what did Jessica tell us to do upon landing?” That’s right…feet up and she will guide us in. So up went our feet and we were once again greeted by Jessica, who was wearing a big smile. No turbulence or rough landing but instead we were gently lowered back into our original seated position on the back platform.
Our Monday afternoon, post-work parasail ride with Island Head Watersports was our “happy hour”…a boat ride mixed with a little extreme adventure and breathtaking views. Now that’s a concoction I’ll take any day of the week!
If flying 400 feet in the air is a little more than you can stomach, Island Head can keep you a little closer to earth on either a jet ski, paddle board or banana boat. For more information visit their website by CLICKING HERE.
I made a short video of our trip which I hope you will enjoy. And thank you to Jenn for being my co-pilot in flight and my husband, Todd, for taking video of us from a small, and not so sea-worthy skiff boat. Now that’s true love!