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Magnificent. That’s the only word that captures the feeling of pushing an iceboat to the limits in half a gale with snow scudding along the ice.
By the end of the day there was perhaps 80% ice showing, with what drifts were left becoming compacted. In the lighter air tomorrow, one could probably sail around them in the main body of the lake, but the coves are still snow packed.
In the lee with full sun; it was an absolutely stunning day. The sun is beginning to show its strength. Spring sailing is right around the corner.
Boats are off the ice awaiting the next recovery.
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Most of Maine had a slow painful trickle of light snow all day. The way the flakes looked fro out the window in the light air, with up drafts, side drafts, and no drafts reminded more of a plague of locusts than snowfall. All flittering about, ravishing our fresh crop of new ice.
Mt. Desert got an inch, Damariscotta Lake received two. But the snow is cold and light. The wind forecast for tomorrow is rather generous so it may very well blow off. If you haven’t sailed on a big lake getting blown clear, this might be your chance. Have a look at what’s under the snow at Vannah Rd:
Yes, that’s water in the foreground. The creek has blown its banks and renders the ramp unusable.
Over in the corner where the steps are, there appears to be solid ice right to the shore. We plan to meet at 9:30 and see what’s what. If we can’t get on, we’ll have a look at the north end at Lake Farm.
Thanks to Bryce Geele for taking these pictures yesterday. Ice checking is for everyone!
Yesterday Bob Lombardo sunk up to his ankles in wonderful slush. None of our lakes had wet out, but Long Pond did, and with these cold days and nights the plate is bound to have set up. It looks like Tuesday and possibly Wednesday will be fine days to sail. We sailed there a few years ago. The access is great, and the scenery is stunning. It’s big enough to have fun, even set up marks if folks are so inclined.
Gagnon and I are planning to go and welcome everyone else to join us. Check in if you want to come!
Meanwhile, Denis Guertin is making good use of this down time: https://youtu.be/7j99wQmvmws Looks like some one needs to work on his downwind speed…
Indian Lake. The area in Red is open water and/or hazzards.
Scott Valentine from Long Island checks in from Lima, Ohio:
Today was a practice day. The ice is hard and fast. The wind was 5-8mph. Made adjustments. Tried out the adjustments. Made new adjustments. Tried out the adjustments. You get the idea. We also did a few practice laps with an assortment of people. At the end of the day Pete and I went for one last lap. We were sailing with someone named Ryan from Toledo. Ryan was next to me and Pete was behind us. Then Ryan suddenly disappeared into a hole. Pete saw it. Both of us looped around. Ryan jumped out out the water and Pete sailed him back to the shore. Pete came back with our Canadian friend, Colin. We were able to extricate the boat from the hole. Ryan came back out just as the boat was pulled out. He thanked us, and sailed the boat back to shore. He’ll be back sailing tomorrow.
Check out this fine discussion on ice boating with Daniel Hearn. When anyone asks you what’s it like to sail iceboats, send them here. He really nails it. Nice videos, too.
Commodore of the Hard Water – TRUE
Latest options for a Gold Cup venue look like Ohio or Northern Indiana. Preliminary call tonight at 10:00 eastern time.
Last Sunday on Lake Sunnapee Kate Morrone, Ramblin Roger, Tom Gloudemans and Steve and James Lamb found decent ice and barrels of wind. Tom has the big red boat with a 23′ mast and no storm sail. He says he managed to keep it on the ice most of the time. Not sure about the couple in the Lockley Skimmer but maybe with that much wind the Lockley will get two people moving.
Snow is falling in Maine right now. Will Sunnapee be spared? Reports from Massachusetts are not good. The DN Worlds are this weekend, so they are bound to find ice somewhere.
Correction: the photos in the last post from Damariscotta Lake are by Halle Starkweather.