Skimmer, Anyone?

Bart Chapin found this on Craigs List. It’s in the Sanford area:

https://maine.craigslist.org/boa/5687526371.html

It’s always great to hear that people are looking up iceboats in July!

Meanwhile, here’s something to help keep you cool.

Posted in 2016 Season | Leave a comment

Ice Wins In July

The small village of Lampton is nestled along the southern end of Lac St. Francois in Quebec. Careful readers of these musings will remember this lake as the venue for the first annual CIBC Hundred Mile Race last March, and the summer home of winner of that race, Denis Guertin. Apparently Lambton has a fine community spirit. This from Denis:

“A few weeks ago, I took part to a photo contest in Lambton.
Participants had to submit a picture taken in Lambton. The theme of the contest was: Showing someone doing his sport or hobby in Lambton.
So I decided to send a picture of Bill, Jim, Lee, Karin and me (behind the camera) all aligned with our iceboats, the day before the 100 miles race. And guess what? I won the first price… $100

I guess I will have to pay you all a beer some time next season.”

Don’t worry about that beer, Denis. Your hospitality during those amazing days in March was already way over the top. Here’s to pulling it off again next year!

Posted in 2016 Season | Leave a comment

Doug Raymond’s Hobie Tri

With all the buzz around the America’s Cup foiling catamarans performing like middle of the road iceboats and how we are waiting, patiently as only iceboaters do, for the huge influx of charged up go fast sailors into our sport, Doug sends along a middle way. Not quite Denis and Frank sailing their Hobie 16 on the verge of disaster, nor the high end international foilers, but a step beyond Jory Squibb with his new passion for sea kayaks. Here’s what Doug has discovered, along with a video for illustration.

What I Did On My Summer Vacation.

About ten years ago I purchased a Hobie Adventure Island. It is a kayak with folding amas and a sail. It has Mirage Drive, a system that allows the skipper to pedal it with one’s feet, leaving hands free for fishing. The Mirage Drive was invented by Greg Ketterman. He also designed the boat. If that name seems familiar it is because he was also the designer/inventor of the Tri-Foiler and the world speed record holder for a while. So, what does this have to do with iceboating? With amas extended the boat is eight feet wide. All up it weighs about 125 lbs. The mast is 16’. Sail area is 60 square feet. The skipper sits in a comfortable position facing forward, (just like a DN? ed.) not on a tramp but in an adjustable seat. You can car-top it or carry it around in the back of a pick-up. Or if you prefer, trailer it. Sounds a lot like a DN doesn’t it? Okay, so what about speed you ask? Unlike DN’s, multi-hulls and other Hobies they aren’t fast. But don’t stop reading. The lack of speed doesn’t negate the the thrill we seek. The sail is instantly reefed to any size on a roller furling mast. This allows the skipper to sail safely in thirty knots of air and enjoy the ensuing adrenalin rush. And if you are lucky enough to be out when the breeze just starts to build and the water is still flat you’ll find yourself trimming for every last ounce of speed and you’ll swear it feels exactly, well almost, like a March day sailing in three inches of slush. It is uncanny how similar the sensation is. These boats have many other attributes. Number one: There is always a venue available. No waiting for ice. They are capable of expeditions. One guy sailed his from Miami to Montreal. NumberTwo: You can get to and experience areas inaccessible by any other sailing craft. Number three. And this gets to what I did on summer vacation. They can be fitted with a motor. I recently added a Minn-Kota 30 pound thrust electric motor. When the wind dies it moves me along at 4 MPH. I copied the mounting design from an Aussie who posted photos on the Hobie blog site. So my fellow iceboaters, you may want to consider getting one of these. You will not regret it. You’re welcome to try mine if you like.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUunt33H_sc

Posted in 2016 Season | 2 Comments

Happy Solstice

To celebrate the shortening of the days as we begin the countdown to first black ice, here’s a few tidbits to slake your thirst:

Moosehead Teaser YT – YouTube

60 PROOF

By Dave Wilkins, 2003

Regattas are fun and touring’s real nice.
But some of us think there’s more fun on ice.
How fast can we go? Someone exclaimed.
No, no, just stop at 60 you fiend.

Rattle and rumble, a DN can fly.
This must be 40 with a gleam in the eye.
Faster and faster, so it’s all just a blur.
At 50 man, she’s starting to purr.

Bear off in the puff and strain on the sheet
Now Ron Sherry’s got someone to beat.
At 60, OK now we’re movin some quick.
Oh damn, this ice had better be thick.

70, ahum, has it ever been done?
Will this rig stay together? Is this really so fun?
White knuckles, palpitations, adrenaline rush.
Snow drifts, a shoreline, lumpy hard slush.

Roaring of runners and well bended mast.
Straining so hard to complete the task.
I don’t know if I can get much quicker.
Oh heck, sheet some more cause I need the sticker.

Quit now? No way, I’m no fool.
Cause ego’s in charge, I’m out of control
These boats are fast and I am the best.
Here’s the proof from the GPS in my vest.

Also, Congratulations to the iceboaters who have just finished the Bermuda Race. Steve and James Lamb, Oliver Moore and a few others.

Posted in 2016 Season | 1 Comment

Warm Feet

This is a fairly typical photo, but something about it grabs me. Maybe it’s the big Moosehead ice, or the fact that we’re all setting storm sails (except Charlie), or the fact that I remember this as one of the most awesome cruises of the season. But what I know for sure is that is was cold. Jory’s gloves failed, and others mentioned their cold feet.
Today I stumbled into an old friend who coaches downhill skiing and we swapped notes on what a fantastic/devastating winter we’d had. She said that it was so warm that she rarely turned her boots on. Apparently she has battery powered boot warmers because coaches spend lots of time just standing around watching students crash and rolling their eyes. So they use Hotronics: Hotronic FootWarmers and Dryers | Hotronic – Keeping Feet Warm, Keeping Hands and Feet Dry!

In an iceboat, you could either strap the battery to your body, or mount it on the inside of the boat somewhere, as long as you remembered to un-plug before dis-embarking.
This might not seem timely to those of you down south, but here in Maine it hasn’t hit seventy yet. The NW wind has been howling for days and we actually lit a fire last night. If I could have plugged in my slippers I wouldn’t have thought twice.

We’re setting up another Mini Skeeter on spec; please pass the word. Carl Jelleme’s storm DN wing mast is done and ready to ship. While most of us are happy to step the regular DN mast in high winds to eliminate the wing mast flutter when sheeting out, Carl doesn’t care for the look, which is important, so commissioned a small wing mast with the usual bright carbon finish.

Thanks to John Stanton for leading the countdown to the summer equinox. I just hope we get a dash of summer at some point here in Maine. As the old joke goes: “What did you do last summer on your vacation in Maine? Well, I believe it came on a Thursday so we had a picnic…”

Posted in 2016 Season

Gambit Wanted

Scott Woodman has a friend who wants to come iceboating and is looking for a Gambit. If anyone can help, please write to Scott at .

In other news, Ryan Haskell, who sails Curtis Rindlaub’s old Captan America DN, has bought plans for a Mini Skeeter, #40, and plans to have it on the ice this coming season. We’re still waiting to see how Frank’s turns out. He’s an excellent painter and bound to come up with something great for ROLLING ROCK 33.

Posted in 2016 Season

Mini Skeeter Video

This is actually a better video. Enjoy!

Mini Skeeter Iceboating Canyon Ferry #1 – YouTube

Posted in 2016 Season | 1 Comment