About Fair Winds Sailing Co.
Fair Winds Sailing Co. strives to create the most exciting and authentic sailing experience in Destin, Florida. We offer a chance to slow down and enjoy time with friends and family while taking in the natural beauty of the Emerald Coast.
Launched in spring 2018 by Captain Harbor Partin, his most fond memories from growing up were all the adventures he had on Selah, exploring the coast of Florida and experiencing the thrill of going anywhere the wind can take you. He wanted to give others the opportunity to have that same thrill and experience the joy of sailing.
Our sailing vessel's namesake, "Selah" is a Hebrew word that comes from the Psalms and often marks passages about peace, mindfulness and thankfulness. It's our hope that our guests leave feeling enlivened and refreshed from time spent with friends and family in God's creation.
Captain Harbor Partin is a USCG licensed 100-Ton Master Captain and has over 20 years of sailing experience. He first caught the bug when his parents tied his life jacket to the trampoline of their Hobie Cat as a baby. When he got a little older he would pack all his friends on his one person day sailer at every church summer picnic. By the time he was 16 he had already done three blue water trips on Selah. After pursuing music and writing for a number of years, Captain Harbor rediscovered his passion for sailing when he was offered a first-mate position on The Emerald Lady, a chartered Morgan Out Island 33. He recieved his Captain's license in 2014 and soon developed a plan to restore his family's old sailboat. In his free time Captain Harbor enjoys surfing, paddleboarding, playing guitar and spending time with his wife Kaitlyn and their three sons, Fisher, Ezra and Atlas.
Then and Now:
Westsail 32 #413 (AKA Dian II, Seawitch, Selah) throughout the years.
"Selah" is a cutter-rigged Westsail 32 and was built in 1975. Her "double ender" design originates from Norwegian pilot boats of the 1800's that braved the treacherous conditions of the North Sea. Her full keel, tiller driven helm and long bowsprit makes her one-of-a-kind in Destin. Westsail boats are known to be well built, sea-worthy vessels that have taken many sailors around the world safely and comfortably. One even famously survived "The Perfect Storm."
Selah has been in Captain Harbor's family for over 40 years. His grandfather bought Selah in 1975 (then she was known as "Dian II" and later "Seawitch"). Because it was sold as a kit boat, his grandfather finished the entire interior of the boat himself, with a little bit of help from Captain Harbor's mom and aunts.
In 2000 the boat was passed on to Captain Harbor's parents. His first adventure on the boat was sailing it home with his dad from his grandfather's house in Niceville, Fl back to Merritt Island, Fl. The voyage consisted of a lively three days in the open seas, a much quieter stretch through Florida's Intercoastal Waterway and an eerie night across Lake Okeechobee. Captain Harbor was only 14 at the time and he learned a lot about sailing, navigation, weather and how to handle unexpected situations all in the span of a few days.
Once the boat was home, the name was changed to "Selah" and Captain Harbor and his family spent the next few years taking the boat on all kinds of adventures, including two trips to the Bahamas and many weekends exploring the Florida Coast.
In 2004 Selah dragged anchor during Hurricane Jeane and washed up on the rocky shore of the Indian River. She was taken out of the water and put into storage to be worked on at a later date.
10 years went by and very little had been done to get Selah sea-worthy again, but Captain Harbor saw a lot of potential where others might have seen a lost cause. He had just received his captain's license and saw an opportunity to preserve the memories and family history the boat represented while also giving her a new life as private charter boat in Destin. Selah was trucked up to Destin where she spent three weeks in the work yard getting ready to be put in the water. Once in the water, Captain Harbor spent the next few years making the boat functional again and ready to sail. In February 2018 he took Selah on her first sail in 14 years and that spring Fair Winds Sailing Co was launched.
Selah now takes passengers daily out into the open water and after 40 years still invokes a passion for the sailing lifestyle to all who come aboard.