Ice Fest

So this is what a Spring Fling looks like: nearly forty boats touring all over the lake, a DN regatta under way, lots of wind & sun and the Ronkonkoma Long Island boys grilling on the beach passing out burgers and dogs. There was a small flock of SkimBats roosting in the lee of First Island with perfect access to the smoothest ice. Some of the cruisers made a great game of sailing deep and fast through the narrows, as far as the pressure ridge blocking the way at the south end, rounding up in a great charge of wind that lived there all day and pinching back out. The South Broads were not accessed.
We were treated to the company of Tom Nichols and Dan Clapp, tuning their A and B class Skeeters. The lake could barely contain the orange A boat:

The DN Regatta was the Maine States, which David Fortier won. We’ll post the official results once they become available. Race committee was a couple of cheapskates, Lloyd and Bob MacEwen. Tip of the helmet to you guys for helping out:

Below, Dave and Doug dukeing it out:

It’s not clear what sort of cleats Doug Raymond is wearing, but they sure can throw up some ice:

For many people, this was to be the last day of the season. Southern lakes are done and the entire east coast is about to be hammered by a massive blizzard. By the time all that snow melts there will be crocuses peeking out of the melt pools and even our ice could be mush. We will, of course, continue to scour the big inland lakes for a good surface with enough ice under it. But Damariscotta Lake probably won’t survive. What an elegant and generous lake she’s been this winter. And after all she’s been through in these past weeks, to have the fortitude to get us yet one more session with wind and sun is way beyond what even the most optimistic iceboater could expect. And on a weekend! We wish her the best this coming off-season.

There will still be boats on the lake for tomorrow, while a few will take a chance on Pushaw, which is reported to be pretty nice. We say never to leave sailable ice, but leaving it with a wind burnt face and smoking runners seems like the best way to hold the memory. And if this is indeed the last hurrah, well then we couldn’t have asked for a better one.

Big thanks to Anita for hosting iceboaters at the Inn, and setting up a fine lunch for us today. Warming in the sunny window overlooking the lake with an excellent fish chowder on the board just put the whole day over the top.
These fantastic photos were taken by Mark Allen, of Jefferson. Thanks for sharing, Mark, and you’ll be warm again soon, don’t worry.

Lastly, in spite of all the fat lady implications above, we’re still planning on getting in the 100 mile race. Stand By!

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One Response to Ice Fest

  1. Court Dwyer says:

    Thanks all for a great day of viewing. Court &Sue Dwyer at The Clock House Damariscotta Lake Jefferson.

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