40 Years 

April 7, 1983  


Vent d'Ete and her Captain en route to Ocean City, MD from Cape May, NJ, while the Captain keeps a close eye on a passing container ship close off the starboard beam. October 1987
Vent d'Ete in Jupiter, FL. April 2023. After 3 months of daily restoration to hull and topsides.

The infamous Vent d’Ete; a 40-year-old New England built classic designed by the Swedish naval architect Carl Alberg

This is the story of the infamous sailing vessel Vent d’Ete.

It is a glimpse into her 40-year past of numerous epic voyages (and many mini ones), spanning the distance from Nantucket to Eleuthera.

She has appeared in numerous newspaper features and articles, appeared in Cruising World magazine (April 1994), and even graced the front cover of Yachting magazine’s “Fitting Out” issue in April 1996.

I am John Lebeau, and this little lady was built for me in the spring of 1983 (her hull was actually laid up on April 7, 1983), by Cape Dory Yachts in East Taunton, MA.

The Company built 176 little yachts of this size. She is the larger sister-ship to “The Smallest Yacht in the World,” Carl Alberg‘s, 18 ft., Cape Dory Typhoon

However, out of 176 CD 22’s made over the course of several years, the company only built 30 CD 22Ds, that came nicely equipped with a little 1-cylindar Yanmar diesel that gave these special little boats a 440-mile steaming range (diesel power alone), on just 13 gallons of fuel!

I’m not sure how many of these very special CD 22Ds, out of the 30 originally built, are still in existence, but one of this Captain’s life missions, if it is the last thing I do on earth, is to make sure the infamous Vent d’Ete is one of them, for many, many years to come, and hopefully long after I am gone, to be enjoyed by generations to come.

Yes, I am a sailor, and (being half Swedish), I have a Viking-like attachment to the Vent d’Ete.

Did you know that Viking men were so attached to their boats (longboats) throughout their lifetime that they would be buried in them with full provisions for their next and greatest voyage? Awesome!

But please, when this Viking goes off on his greatest voyage, do not bury me in my beloved Vent d’Ete

She will be a gift to my even-more-beloved, Danish/Swedish/American, twin son and daughter and their little Vikings (I hope) someday, with an amazing provenance to go with her.

I am not just any type of sailor. I’m not the U.S. Navy type of sailor. I am also not a weekend yacht club sailor.

I am a Soul-sailor. I sail for the Zen-like experience of a different reality that can take you places on your chart and in your mind that you never imagined.

Soul-sailing is not a recreational or sporting experience; it is a spiritual experience.

Soul-sailing is going to a place at sea where suddenly you realize that you are closer to God than you ever have been, bathing in His glory all around you, giving you the precious gift of peace and fulfillment, unlike anything you have ever experienced, and often doing it alone on long open-ocean voyages in a small sailboat that can be safely navigated and managed, solo.

So come with me on my next “Voyage of Peace and Fulfillment” where we will celebrate the 40th birthday of Vent d’Ete for the entire rest of the year, beginning with another epic voyage; this time from Jupiter, Florida to New England, then retracing the course of her voyage to North Palm Beach, Florida 30 years ago in October 2023, with a possible, as yet unplanned, voyage to Eleuthera, Bahamas before returning to South Florida.

On this voyage I will bring you along! Come share the experience, the scenery, and the voyaging details of this celebratory, Soul-sailing voyage of a lifetime.

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