2/2 Damariscotta Lake

When I asked Bunting how best to extol the virtues of today, he said: ” should have been here yesterday!” Not that there was anything wrong with today, but if all days on the ice are wonderfully perfect, then none can be. Today was a day of quiet introspection. We all arrived early to beat the afternoon rain, but the wind overslept and didn’t get there until 11:30. We all stood around discussing the meaning of life as an iceboater until Wolfie and Roger got bored and pushed out in search of wind, soon to be seen napping in their cockpits. I sensed movement a while later and took off too. Soon the entire fleet of six were chasing the zephyrs, some with more luck than others. I saw Roger heading south, so joined him for a trip through the narrows and down to Muscongus Bay. New sailor Guy Pollyblank had too much weight on too short runners and had to turn back half-way through the narrows as the ice was softening.

Bunting, Wolfie, Bob MacEwen, Fred Partridge and Guy satisfied themselves with long reaches in the broads.

Speaking of yesterday, Lee Spiller says that they had an awesome day on Sebago. Smooth and hard all the way to Frye’s Leap. A friend, Thom Perkins, borrowed one of Karin’s boats and discovered that a quick gybe in high winds requires just a bit of practice and technique:

But he had a great day and Lee assures us he’ll be back for more, sailing that is. No harm to boat or skipper.

Meanwhile, the Darwin Awards are soliciting nominations and here we have one from the Sebago area:

“This local guy really wanted to say he drove on the lake on April 1st. Which he did. Crossed the pressure ridge 4 times by driving over it at speed! Unfortunately the shore ice by midafternoon was just too soft. Bill Nason pulled him out with a backhoe after a goodly crowd had gathered. No harm to the truck.”

More good news from Ramblin Roger and Kate Morrone. They discovered a beautiful plate of real ice, the kind you can see through, on the Inland Sea, northern Lake Champlain. They cruised north as far as they dared with miles more ahead. An ice fisherman told them they could go all the way to St. Albans in they wanted. And then just for good measure, Roger swung by Newport on his way back to Maine to have a look at Memphremagog. The ice is of the same high quality as Champlain: no white in sight. But it will be very warm there tomorrow followed by days of rain. Validates that ubiquitous feeling amongst iceboaters that there is always good ice somewhere. Good old Roger pulled into Damariscotta in the middle of the night and was setting up well before anyone else arrived. Now that’s some mighty Ramblin, right up there with the incredible stamina of Fred Wardwell, who showed up to sail today but wasn’t interested in the light air.

There are still boats on the ice, waiting out the next two days of lousy weather, in anticipation of excellent sailing Sunday and Monday. There are tentative plans for a CIBC Regatta one of those two days, but we’ll announce it here by tomorrow.

Lastly, thanks so much to Dave Godin for giving us an areal update of Moosehead: lets just say we’re not holding our breath yet:

“This is looking south into the west cove at the junction, 95% of the lake is still snow covered with small patches of rough looking ice. The only area that looked promising would be from the south rim of Mt. Kineo to the Rockwood cove area.” ( which is where we sailed last April)

We have lots of eyes on the webcams and weather reports (right Denis?) and will know very soon when to call on the 2015 Moosehead Long Way. If this latest storm brings them rain it could be sooner than we think!

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