I was late for the action on Saturday as I stopped in my home town of Waterville for my Aunt Connie’s funeral. The funeral was a funeral, but the family had a bit of a coffee snack get together and many cousins that I had not seen in quite some time. The visit was terrific, but a bit more ice time than I had planned was gone. I did get back on the road, and Plymouth is less than 45 minutes north of Waterville. Insulated coffee cups are great and I still had semi hot coffee for the rest of the drive.
When I arrived at Plymouth on Saturday there were mostly skaters, kite wingers and Jory on his kick sled. The ice was a uniform black and those that had been scouting reported a good 3 inch thick plate in the iceboat-able area. All of the ice boating scouts were planning to be back on the ice with their boats on Sunday and there was just a slight breeze when I arrived with my DN, so I set up anticipating a possible ride before sunset.
When I had finished setting up the DN I believe well before 1500. I donned my spikes and pushed out in hopes of more wind away from the shore. That was not the case, but I was able to determine that my runner alignment was close to perfect. With as good of a push as I could, my boat coasted halfway across the lake, maybe that was two pushes. There I relaxed laying in my boat for a while hoping for just a bit of wind. It was a beauty of a day, and there were many automobile drivers that stopped in the parking area to have a look at the ice. When I finally decided that the wind was not to appear I pushed and glided back to the launch. When I was breaking my boat down folks continued to stop, a few asking how much ice, my reply was enough to skate. I drove back to Biddeford with that comfortable feeling of having a boat set up and ready to go in the morning. Fortunately I had the assistance of Jim when he texted me to ask if I had the marks, a good reminder for me to load them int the car that evening.
Sunday when I arrived a minute or two after 1000 there were a good number of boats on the ice and a fraction of an inch of powder snow. Two or three mini skeeters five or six DNs setup or being set up, skaters as well. Guy and Tyler’s boats were set up and took the marks out and set the course. There was indeed wind, but difficulty getting the marks to stay up. I had lengths of line in my car and Guy was able to put enough tension on the tripod marks to do the trick. That is now on my list of thing to modify this week, thanks for setting the marks you guys.
As I said the wind was good and most of the snow was blown into small insubstantial drifts. We went out and started to race using the count to three yell self start system. The system works well when the counter cannot run anyway, so fair start. The first race went well, but another bad race planning issue arose, I neglected to bring a pad of paper and pencil. Fortunately Jim had his iPhone, and was able to record finish places with that. The wind held and we had six races with many of us battling it out, but Guy was the fastest DN out there for this Linc Davis. I blame my inconsistent speed on mast rotation/inversion issues, enough to really piss me off!
Jeff Roseberry, the man with many sail numbers was a bit late getting out to the course, but fast when he got there. I think he said that he was having runner sharpness issues as I believe Tyler was also. That is one thing that was working well for me, runners. I and others took a few more runs up and down the lake because the wind was holding and the ice perfect. The forecast called for warming with precipitation, and sure enough when I looked at the radar this AM there was some on the map, and the temperature in Bangor now at 1357 is indeed 54F. Will Plymouth ice survive, or will we be starting from scratch?
Thanks to all sailors that helped get the Linc Davis 2021 to happen. Time to go stone my 3/16 inserts and modify those racing marks. Thinking Ice, Dave