William Graham and Kieran McGuire are two guys with a $12,000 toy that anyone can experience for roughly $300. Their company, Elevated East, which officially launched June 1, allows customers to rent a Lift eFoil (that’s the $12,000 toy) for 90 minutes. But what’s an eFoil? In short, it’s a motorized wakeboard that allows riders to hover above the water like Supergirl (or Superman).
The longer explanation: The Lift eFoil uses a “hydrodynamic torpedo design to raise riders up on the hydrofoil to literally fly above water” using a “lithium-ion battery to power a silent electric motor.” All of this is controlled by a waterproof, wireless handheld throttle that uses Bluetooth technology to power the board for at least one hour. As you cut through the water, you will float above the horizon at speeds that can reach over 25 mph.
All of this aquatic technology intrigued me as I met up with the guys at Long Beach in Sag Harbor one morning. After a quick tutorial on the shore, I put my safety booties on (they can’t get stuck in the propeller, which automatically shuts off once the throttle hits the water anyway), life vest, and helmet. The closest thing I came to doing something this unique in the water was flyboarding — that crazy device that rockets you up into the air like Iron Man (I like my comic book references). The eFoil was a completely different experience.
Like many people on Long Island, I grew up around surfing, and it seemed my muscles remembered the feeling. As I gently pressed the throttle, I went from laying flat on my stomach to progressing onto my knees before fully standing upright — as instructed. But, as Kieran pointed out, I popped up on the board without much use of the in between. Look ma, no hands!
As I glided across Noyac Bay, I felt invincible. My toes guiding the board’s direction, eyes taking in the scenery, arms spread open at times like an eagle. Heart racing, mind calm. Invigorated, yet completely at peace. It was a feeling unlike anything else. With surfing, you need a wave. With wakeboarding, you need a boat. With the eFoil, all you need is open water. I didn’t need to rely on anything other than my desire to keep lifting up.
My legs and abs definitely felt a bit sore the next day from constantly stabilizing the board. As a beginner, I didn’t quite get the air I hoped for. But I still got that natural high, the rush from the experience.
Elevated runs out of Montauk, East Hampton, Sag Harbor, Shelter Island, Southampton, and Hampton Bays. As a client, you pick the village and the guys will pick a spot. There are two 90-minute options: the early bird, a 7 AM time slot for $250, or any other time that’s available for $350. The price point also comes with free photos and drone video footage throughout the summer (Will’s other profession).
Check out all the ways you’ll be elevating your summer at www.elevatedeast.com and on Instagram @elevatedeast.