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On Friday, November 3rd, the Carolina Surf Film Festival kicked off with the Charleston premiere of the new Charleston Ocean Athletes short film. Running 15+ minutes, it was received with many positive reviews from the community. If you haven't watched it yet, here it is below.

I really enjoyed creating and editing this short film. Most of the footage was captured in 2022 and the first half of 2023, but there's also some older footage from recent years past. I used everything from a drone for the aerial shots, to in water footage with a GoPro and an old waterproof point & click camera, and also a Canon DLSR camera and my iPhone for footage captured from the beach. There was also some footage provided by others that I was able to include.

This film is meant to showcase the amazing talented athletes who dare to get in the water when most other human beings run away from the water (when the wind comes up and/or the waves get big). Everyone in the film lives right here in the local Charleston area. There are so many talented men and women out there on the water. I wish I could have captured all of them for this film. It's difficult to do an edit with time constraints and narrowing down the best footage captured. A lot of really good stuff didn't make the film. Perhaps to be shared another time.

I was inspired by past surf/windsurf films I've always admired such as Brian Caserio's Chapped & Surface Tension windsurfing films (the Mustard Plug Beer Song in the final credits is an ode to Surface Tension), Dana Brown's Step Into Liquid, and the San Francisco Chronicles which was an early 2000s documentary showcasing the windsurfing, kitesurfing, and surfing talent in the Bay Area at that time.

Me introducing the film at the Mex1 West Ashley (Charleston) location of the Carolina Surf Film Festival. It was the first film to kick off the two night festival and everyone who was there was still standing in the back when it started. Photo by Cody Mathews

I want to thank Chad Davis, the co-creator and owner of the Carolina Surf Brand and Carolina Surf Film Festival for including this short film. It's rare for a surfing film festival, which is usually inclusive of only pure surf movies, to include a film that has other ocean sports that are an extension of surfing. It also played at the Wilmington location of the Carolina Surf Film Festival.

The Charleston Ocean Athletes Instagram and Facebook pages regularly showcase Charleston area pure surfing and local surfing athletes. In addition, the Carolina Surf Film Festival always has a great slate of pure surfing movies. For these reasons, I chose to make this edit about the other ocean sports that are an extension of surfing, such as kitesurfing, windsurfing, wing foiling, SUP surfing, outrigger canoe and surfski paddling, and prone foil surfing. Charleston is full of these different ocean sport communities.

A group photo with friends (who all shred on the water) who came out in support - the picture is missing a few other friends who were also in attendance. I really appreciate everyone who came out. Photo by Cody Mathews

I hope you enjoy this film as much as I enjoyed making it. I'm always open to feedback and creative ideas to make this website, the social media channels, and the films better. If you have content relevant and suitable for Charleston Ocean Athletes, please share with me...I would love to see it and I may even include it on Instagram/Facebook or in a future project. Please feel free to DM me on Instagram or email me (see email address in "About" section). Better yet, please say "Hi" to me on the beach and introduce yourself if you see me out there capturing footage.

Charleston Ocean Athletes short film credits:

Video & Editing by Mac Barnhardt

Editing Assistance by McIntyre Barnhardt

Other video provided by :

William Barnhardt

David Buckley

Jonathan Coleman

Brad Hyatt

Jess Mokuahi Key

Eddie Roedig

Justin Schaay

Scott West

Athletes (in alphabetical order):

Mac Barnhardt

David Buckley

Dave Cavanaugh

Charleston Paddle Club

Jonathan Coleman

James Corgill

John Cutter

Morne Diedericks

Darren Finan

Chili Graves

Peter Hess

Robert Hess

Morgan Hurley

Brad Hyatt

Scott Hyland

Jess Mokuahi Key

Bart Liebmann

Eric Mims

Josh Parker

Eddie Roedig

Ben Roth

Justin Schaay

David Schar

Grant Scheffer

Trey Sedalik

David Thorvalson

Scott West

Noah Zittrer


Buku Front to Back

The Kills Cat Claw

Cutty Gold Clean My Hands

Local H Heroes

The Power Station Get It On (Bang A Gong)

Levi Matthan Honey (B)

The Dead Weather I Cut Like A Buffalo

Mustard Plug Beer (Song)

A photo with my beautiful wife, to whom I owe a great deal of credit for her love and support. Photo by Cody Mathews

Aloha and Cheers, Mac

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The last post showing an aerial view of the Sullivan's Island and Breach Inlet sandbars at low tide was very popular with the ocean athlete and boating communities. It gives a snapshot of what the sandbars looked like in April 2023 and it will be interesting to see how they change over time, as sandbars often do around here. Someone requested I provide the same for the sandbars around the Stono River Inlet and south Folly Beach. Great idea! So here you go...

The following aerial drone video and photos were captured on May 30, 2023 at dead low tide.

The first clip in this video below is the view from the east tip of Kiawah Island looking east towards south Folly Beach. It begins by flying east over Bird Key. The second clip is the view from the ocean side of south Folly Beach looking inland, and moving from east to west.

Above: This is the view looking south from south Folly Beach. The upper right hand corner is the eastern tip of Kiawah Island.

Below: Kiawah Island at top and Bird Key in the middle right of the photo.

The following 6 photos are a 180 degree view from west to east.

Above: Looking east at the south tip of Folly Beach

Above & below : Another view looking west from south Folly Beach at Kiawah Island and Bird Key

Above: Looking towards northwest where the Folly River meets the Stono River. At left is the north tip of Bird Key.

Above: Snake Island and the Folly River between Bird Key and the south tip of Folly Beach

Above: Looking towards the east at Folly River and the south tip of Folly Beach

Above: Looking at Snake Island at the top of the photo. At right is the very southern tip of Folly Beach.

Above: the view from the southern tip of Folly Beach looking towards Bird Key, Kiawah Island, and the Stono River at top of the photo.

Above: Looking south - the eastern tip of Kiawah Island and the southern tip of Bird Key at upper right of the photo.

Above: Looking south, at top of photo is Bird Key and Kiawah Island

Above: waves outside of the inlet between the southern tip of Folly Beach and Bird Key

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  • Writer's pictureMac

The waters off Sullivan's Island have been a watermen's/waterwomen's playground for a long time. And those who've paid attention over the years know the sandbars off the beach are always changing, which in turn is always changing the experience when playing out there in the ocean.

On April 20th, I captured some aerial drone video and photos of these sandbars in their current state on that day at dead low tide. There has been a lot of interest from the local ocean athlete and boating community on where the sandbars are located and how they look, so I'm posting it here for everyone to review...and to refer back to. Because by this Fall and certainly by next year, I'm sure it will look different. By how much? We'll see...but I'll try to document it in this same fashion once or twice each year. It will be fun and interesting to see the changes over time.

The following 2 minute video has 3 scenes:

1) 360 degree view of all the sandbars (starting with view towards the lighthouse)

2) left (south) to right (north) view of the main sandbar along the beach (from oceanside, looking towards the beach)

3) view of Station 28.5 to Station 30 area (from oceanside, looking towards the beach)

This first photo is looking directly towards Station 28.5 from outside the sandbar. The next several following photos are in sequential order from left to right in 360 degree view.

Another view of the area in front of Station 28.5 and Station 29

Breach Inlet

The area in front of Station 29 and Station 30

Station 30

Breach Inlet and the sandbars on the Isle of Palms side (this and the next two photos)

Looking towards the outside of Breach Inlet

The narrow channel/inlet in front of Station 28.5

Looking out at the rock jetty at Station 30

Looking towards Station 30 from in front of Station 28.5

Looking towards Station 30 and Station 29 from Breach Inlet

Looking directly towards Station 30

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