The regional Florida Marine Patrol Office was and still is located there. The marine officer on duty came over to ask if we were really going to go out in this stuff. According to his instruments sustained winds were averaging between 35-40 mph. Gust to 50+. He advised us he would not be able to assist us if we needed help on the water. We noted his warning and told him we would check back in upon leaving for home.
We sailed from the 406 Causeway, south to the 405 Causeway and back several times that day. Two of us out on trap, and the skipper hiked out using the tramp straps. Needless to say we were screaming. We sustained no damage and came home safe.
However it should be noted that this weather event at that time was Tropical Storm Dennis. Winds over the state of Florida never got stronger than TS winds. In fact the storm weakened as it came ashore over the Keys and meandered up the middle of the state and came out near Brevard County. It did not become a hurricane until after it skirted the Carolina coasts and headed out in the Atlantic. So 80+ winds were not present......Sorry Hog....
No where did I say 80+ winds. We had different report in Melbourne and yes it down graded coming across the penninsula and was considered category one as it went back on the water from what was said on the radio at the time. Good data. And was it 35 to 40 mph. No way in hell. I've gone in those winds many times and it just wasn't. And it certainly wasn't knots being reported which makes it 10% faster. I suspect you saw more of the edge of the storm. So it is fine.
On a totally different issue, are you still in the area? There is a fellow on this forum looking for a way down in Melbourne to get ocean access for his hobie. Do you know how. His post is about switching from a Sunfish to a Hobie.
But to bring some tidbits to light from earlier posts:
Even 50 I would call BS. I've windsurfed in 40 to 50mph (as verified per iwindsurf meters) and there is no way you would want to sail a Hobie in that. Just carrying the windsurf gear to the water in that that type of wind is a challenge. Your Hobie would likely be on it's side before it ever even hit the water.
About 30 to maybe 35mph is the top limit for just about all Hobie sailors in my experience. Many people will call it quits well before that. But most people tend to over estimate the windspeed.
There is some real BS for you. Focus on the use of the word 80ish if you like. Remember that these words above were accurately calibrated.