February 12: Went out to Long Pond Lakeville, Mass, for a rowdy day. Some pretty rough ice and plenty of wind to power through it, and there were patches of good ice too. Great to see some old pals and meet some new ones, a great day on the ice.

January 25: This is a pretty challenging season. Good ice early on but four snowstorms in succession and not very many people are sailing. I got out on Gt Sacandaga once but since then, there's not much ice around.

December 26: there has been sailing all over the northeast. Beautiful black ice. The weather forecast says it's coming to an end today. So those of us who have been buried under holiday obligations will now be buried under the white stuff.
    Saratoga is a deep lake, I never trust it this early, and now the snow is coming so we wait and watch. The South Shore marina will be open this season, so we can get on the lake. I'll keep you posted.

November 18, 2010: Ice is a wonderful thing. We should all give thanks.
     In the northeast here, the NEIYA iceboating club area, we've had the Swap, Banquet, Annual meeting event. They haven't fired me, I'm still the secretary. The next iceboat event is the Indoor tune-up clinic in Canton Mass. The date is December 4th, 11 to 3pm. If anyone wants to go over from the Albany area, post me and we can carpool. More information at Black Ice, and the NEIYA site.

Happy new season! The 2010-2011 season of solidified water begins!

February 19: Saratoga got the Tuesday storm, so it's snowed out.

February 13: You may have noticed that this page is pretty inactive. I'm not checking Saratoga Lake this season. I'm too busy! A lot of work and other projects have been taking all of my time. Sorry, maybe next year.
    I did sail last weekend at Webster Mass, and it was a great day. This is a fabulous season! Ice everywhere. Wishing I had more time, Ed

Saturday December 19: There is ice everywhere to the north. There is sailing today in Maine, NH, but I'm too busy to let myself get excited. I'm slaving away at work and projects till January 11th. So call the hotline, check your lake with a friend, sail fast, sail safely. have fun. I'll be with you soon. Check Black Ice for club info.

Thursday September 17: Happy new season! Let's start off 2009--2010 by announcing the New England Ice Yacht Club's annual luncheon, swap meet, and club meeting at the Doubletree Hotel, 5400 Computer Drive, Westborough, Mass. Saturday, November 7th!
    If you are interested in the sport of iceboating, iceboating gear, racing, cruising, this is a good place to start finding out about it. Get there around 9:30 or 10am for the swap. You don't have to go for the lunch but I recommend it. Annual meeting is after lunch, all are invited. The buffet is 25 bucks, post Henry Capotosto to make a reservation:
hecap@aol.com or call 401-739-5894. See you there!


Thursday March 19: Malletts Bay was fun. Must have been 60 boats there, all sizes. The ice lasted till about 2 in the afternoon. There are people talking about sailing this weekend, after two weeks of spring weather the ice is still holding up. It's been a good season.Thanks to all the guys who hosted their local lakes for us, checked the ice and reported. And did all the things that have to be done to keep the club running.

Thursday March 12: I'm thinking about going to Malletts Bay on Saturday. They say the ice is good and the wind looks perfect for all of New England that day. I should probably do some sharpening tomorrow.

Monday March 9: I just ran across Ron Sherry's excellent new site. Pretty concentrated DN iceboat information from the North American champ. http://elklakeiceboating.com/c2.html

Saturday March 7: Saratoga Lake is greyed out and flat as a pancake. Joe at the South Shore Marina claims that there's 22 inches of ice. I don't know if it will survive this melt, but at the moment Saratoga is frozen tight to the edge, and maybe it will be sailable when it gets cold next week. Joe says he can widen the access for trailers if needed. Call South Shore Marina at 518-584-9125 for info.

Thursday March 5: The meltout and refreeze came, but something came up last weekend and I missed the fun. I'm looking for some ice for this weekend but all I see is more melt.     Meanwhile the Black Ice newsletter of the NEIYA has been revamped, check the progress at Black Ice.

Wednesday Feb 25: I'm taking Billy's suggestion and heading to Webster tomorrow. See you on the ice. Put-in is at 395 exit 1.
    I just sawed my boom Jaws off. See how that works tomorrow. I would like my mast to derotate more, and it's hard to tell what's happening with the boom jaws putting pressure on things.

Tuesday Feb 24: Almost went to Webster today. I have too much work. There is a group of DNers out of Kingston that I hope to catch up with Saturday. Saratoga continues to be snowed out.

Saturday Feb 21: Drove Cathy down to JFK today, tomorrow is all clear. But it's snowing tomorrow at Webster and Saratoga too.

Friday Feb 13: After a major melt this week ice is tightening up all over new England. Call the hotline and see where the action is. Hmmm. I should check Saratoga, Athens is gone for the season.

Sunday Feb 8: It was a wild day yesterday at Athens. Plenty of power, plenty of ice, sailing with all the big stern steerers. The Hudson River group makes quite a scene when it sets up in Athens, it's really a festival not to be missed. There were also some big boats up from NJ, sailors from Canada and all over New England.

Friday Feb 6: Southern New England is snowed out. It looks like Athens is the place for sailing this weekend. Saturday is calling for 7 to 15 from the south. See you there!

Tuesday, February 3: The big snow scare has blown over in this area at least, maybe we'll have some local sailing this weekend.
    Long Pond Lakeville was a good time on Saturday. 30 boats or so showed up with very little advance reporting. LPL is bumpy in places but there are large expanses of great ice. It was blowing 20 all Saturday so it was a pretty wild day.
    My mistake, The Hudson River Ice yacht Club did sail at Athens last weekend. Vixen sailed Friday and more boats were set up through the weekend. This is something to see! These boats are from the 1890s, go here for some pics.

Friday, Jan 30: One destination for tomorrow is Long Pond Lakeville/Freetown over by Fall River MA. Long Pond Harwich on the Cape is also a good bet. Call the hotline Friday night and get on the ice.
    Also, the Hudson River group is looking to set up at Athens (not this weekend). Athens provides good access to a large area of unbroken Hudson River ice. If you want to see iceboating as it was 120 years ago, this could be the year.

Thursday, Jan 29: I think the whole of northern New England is snowed out. In the south things are better. Redbank? Bantam? These lakes could be wet-out and ready to go for Saturday or Sunday. According to Jeff Brown, over by the cape conditions are good.

Monday Jan 26: Negative on Lake George. I called Duffy's Tavern, it overlooks the lake, and they say the lake is snowcovered with lots of snowmobile ruts, no ice showing. It was probably an old picture in the Sunday paper. I think the only ice in the northeast is out on the Cape. Let's hope they get rain on Wednesday.

Sunday Jan 25: I almost drove to the cape this weekend. They have good conditions over there. But it's a four hour drive and urgent projects and commitments at home edged out the pull toward the ice. Then this morning in the Sunday paper is a big picture of an immaculate ice surface on Lake George. It's an hour's drive and it looks fantastic.
    There may be a few iceboaters on Lake George but nobody who communicates to the group is looking after this lake. I used to have a number of a restaurant that overlooks the lake. I'll find out about this.

Friday, Jan 16: Dan Guido reports that Otsego Lake is building black ice. In Cooperstown, 90 minutes from Albany. Tomorrow it's going to be very cold with winds in the 7 to 8 range. Sunday looks better for wind but it's going to snow starting Saturday night. Now the latest report is that Otsego is rough with snow hummocks and not worth the drive.
    In New England South Watuppa and Ninagret are going to be scouted tomorrow, both in RI.

Friday, Jan 9: There must have been 25 boats on Webster today. Big boats, DNs, and Freeskates all had a blast. The wind built through the day and by mid-afternoon you really had your hands full.
    At 1:30 or so the channel between the central plate and North Bay opened up and was impassable. Early season conditions means thin ice and things can change fast. I'm lucky I saw the seagulls swimming in the open water. Since I was sailing in the center part of the lake and almost sailed into the drink trying to sail to the north bay, I was separated from my car -- and my lunch. Art Menard gave me a lift to Memorial Beach. Thanks to Bob S. and Billy and all who checked and reported.

Thursday, Jan 8: Webster is still good according to local sailors, and the windcaster says that Friday would be a very nice day to go sailing. Sunny, high of 26, winds... pretty rowdy, 13 to 18 with gusts to 30. It's two hours from Albany.

Tuesday January 6: Bob S. from the Webster Mass area called last night. He says that Webster Lake (Lake Chaubunagungamaug) is heaven on ice. He and Billy Bluefeather checked every bay and found a consistent 4 inches of black, rated 9.5. South of Worcester Mass near the Conn border. I have to work.

Saturday January 3: Dan Guido , Bob Elison, and I sailed Canadarago Lake south of Richfield Springs in central NY. New black ice with 90 percent snow coverage, less than an inch of powder. The ice was four inches thick, and there were some obvious working ridges that got slushy late in the day. We had a big plate to work with and it was blowing 20+ so it was a blast, my first time out this season.

Friday January 2: Canadarago looks like the destination for tomorrow. Good breezes, Dan G. and Bob Ellison sailed it today. Be careful everyone, picks, cleats, throwline, good sense.

January 1: Happy New Year!
Bob Ellison and Dan Guido are watching Canadarago Lake. Canadarago snapped over after the snowstorm and is making black ice quickly in below zero temps. Dan says it may be good for the weekend.

December 31: Snowing at the moment. They're saying the lake is getting 2 to 4 inches.

December 29: Both Saratoga Lake and Round Lake are snapped over, snowed on, and greyed out with rain pretty as a picture. All we need now is some cold nights.
    I talked to Pat at the South Shore Marina this morning and they're going to be open this winter, even weekdays. They have been closed for two years.
    Parking is $7.00 a day, with a restaurant upstairs. It looks like we can legally get on this lake this season. SSM doesn't want people driving onto the lake from their access. They have narrowed the path to a five foot opening, so no trailers on the ice. Call South Shore Marina 518-584-9125 for more info.

The Hudson River Ice Yacht Club plans to have an outdoor display of up to 12 Hudson River Ice Yachts dating from the late 1800s in front of the Presidential Library. Included in the exhibit will be world-championship winning ice yachts owned by John A. Roosevelt and his Hyde Park neighbor, Col. Archibald Rogers. Ice Yacht Club members will be on-hand each day to talk about their boats, their sport and the history of ice yachting on the Hudson.
    Opening remarks for the exhibition are scheduled for December 27th, at 3:00 PM at the Henry A. Wallace Visitor Center. The exhibit runs from December 27th through January 3rd but will be closed on New Year’s Day. The exhibit is also subject to closure due to inclement weather conditions. Call ahead to confirm exhibit hours at 845-229-9115 or 1-800-FDR-VISIT.

December 14: Round Lake is almost completely skinned over, so it's coming along. The lake is high, flooding the little parking area at the "launch." The high water level may make it a bit harder to get traction and space to get back up the hill to the road.

December 11, 2008: First post of the 2008-2009 season! I've been busy and sick by turns, late getting to this.
    There's been sailing reported in NH and Maine. They have some ice around Cooperstown I've heard, but three days ago our early lake, Round Lake, didn't have a stitch of ice. I'll be checking it again in the morning and will let you know. Here's a map of Round Lake.

Give me a call if you're sailing in the Albany area. 518-436-9498
I missed the NEIYA off-ice tune-up last weekend, Canton Mass, over by Boston, but I hear that it was well attended and that a good time was had by all. Sorry I couldn't be there.
Saratoga continues to be very hard to get onto. Scott Meyer and I sailed last year from the NE corner of the lake, Fitch Road. It's a pathetic put-in and you have to drive way up the road to park. And we got yelled at by some guy who keeps the pumping station lot free of cars. There won't be any regattas on Saratoga Lake anytime soon.

March 31, Monday: the snow missed Burlington and points north, but there was no wind this weekend, at least not enough to drive three hours for. I think this is about it for the season. Warm temps are wrecking the hardwater playground. Time to think about rowing.
Link to Black Ice, the newsletter of the NEIYA.

March 28, Friday: We got 4 inches of wet snow this morning. I was thinking about Canadarago for tomorrow, but they've got snow too. Another Friday storm.

March 25, Tuesday: Sunapee was fun on Saturday. 30 boats were sailing on Sunapee's almost 9 miles with no ridges. Gusty winds got rowdy at times, stressing the gear. Henry Capotosto's boom exploded and he had a pretty long walk back to the beach. I think the lake is still being sailed. I've put in a post about Canadarago, I'll post when I find out about it.

March 20, Thursday: Sunapee in NH may be the destination for Saturday.

March 18, Tuesday: Monday on Canadarago was a great day of sailing. It was Frank Wall and I, with Dan Guido showing up later. Pretty crunchy surface, frozen slush with a bit of snow, but it was cold all day and stayed hard and sailable with plenty of wind.
I drove past acres of open water on the way there, but when I got to Canadarago it was 12 inches of hard ice tight to the edge. Glad Dan posted me. Canadarago Lake is near Cooperstown NY.

March 16, Sunday: The Friday snows ruined Sunapee for the weekend. Danny Guido says that Canadarago is good in the Cooperstown area, so I may head out there tomorrow.

March 14, Friday: Sunapee in NH is the destination this weekend. Saratoga's surface never got better from the last snow.

February 23, Saturday: It snowed yesterday, breaks my heart. Conditions had finally materialized on Saratoga Lake and we had a great day sailing on Thursday. On Friday the lake was completely snowed out.

February 20, Wednesday: Saratoga is good. The recent rain, melt, and freeze has flattened Saratoga Lake to a sailable surface. There is a quarter inch of snow, but half the ice is blown clean, some patches of shell, I'd give it a 6.5. Scott and l will be sailing from Fitch Road tomorrow mid-morning.
    There is no trailer access to this lake and parking is limited. Exit 14 on I-87 Northway, go east on 9P, Fitch Rd is the second road after the bridge. Not a good put-in, Mangino's is marginally better but costs $5.00.
    Dan Guido reports that Canadarago is also good.

February 15: Saratoga is snowed out. There's crust over 1 to 3 inches of snow and slush, a real mess. But the ice is thick, I measured 17 inches, so we may get conditions yet. I'm going to try Webster Mass tomorrrow.

February 11: Monday. Saratoga is covered with 2 inches of snow. Not crusty snow or styrofoam, just snow, with no clear areas. It's technically sailable with snow plates I suppose, but it would be slow. Melt at the Mangino's put-in is completely healed.

February 7: We've had a lot of warm rain and then snow. It's not getting really cold until Sunday and Monday. So I'm a little skeptical about local ice for this weekend. Monday maybe.

February 4: The problem with checking ice on the way to work is that you may come across good sailing conditions and still have to go to work. Saratoga looks good today, and we're on the verge of a meltout. I should be sailing today. I checked at the Mangino's put-in at the bottom of the lake.
    Exit 12 from I-87, turn right at the end of the ramp, continue straight to the lake, turn right. Mangino's is 5 blocks on the left. Put-in is around the right side of the restaurant.

February 1: Checked the ice on Saratoga at the Mangino's Restaurant put-in, and it looks great. The put-in is not great, it's narrow, no turn-around. You can't back a trailer down to the ice. It's park-pretty-close and carry.
    It was snowing when I got there, and it's supposed to snow more tonight after some rain, so it's hard to say what the surface is going to be like tomorrow.
The NEIYA Hotline says there is ice at Webster, and Winnie. It will be updated tonight.

January 28: Went to Winnipesaukee in NH for the weekend. I raced on Saturday, got my butt kicked in more ways than one, and then slammed around the lake for a while on Sunday in the falling snow, yaahoo!

January 25: Going up to try sailing Saratoga this afternoon, putting in at Mannings Cove. (don't try it, the police will ticket your car)

January 24: Round Lake has 8 or 9 inches of ice, but has some dense snowcover which has been made into hard ruts by plows making racetracks for ATVs and motorcycles, forget it.
    Saratoga is better, plenty of ice, the snow is about half blown off. I recommend putting on at Fitch Road on the north east corner of the lake. There's a couple hundred feet of 1.5 inch snow to go through before you get to the blown off part, but I think you could do a pretty interesting "Saratoga the Hard Way" 10 mile round trip to the bottom of the lake and back. I saw no ridges at all.

January 14: Haven't been up to the lakes lately, but I'm sure there's no ice because of the big meltout. There was some sailing last weekend on Winnepesaukee in NH and on Webster in MA -- cautious sailing, planking on, etc. Now we have had another snowstorm hittting Vermont and northern NH, western Mass. Not so bad around here, just an inch or so, and now rain. But then it's going to get cold! Hope springs eternal.

January 7: A good time was had by all at Norton on Saturday. Big turn out.
The snow is gone on Round Lake, so when this little January thaw ends we're going to have a local lake to sail on.
New link to Black Ice, the newsletter of the NEIYA.

January 4: Sailing this weekend -- conditions are good at Norton Lake south of Boston.

January 2: Season in a nutshell: We had a promise of early ice in December, then five major snow storms -- storms that involved the whole northeast.
Round Lake is wetting out three inches of new snow as I write. Still no ruts, and it's cold enough to make ice now, but I doubt that the lake will smooth out this time around. There's another thaw coming. Call the hotline to get an update on sailing closer to Boston -- they're talking about tomorrow and Friday, the wind looks better tomorrow. 508-481-1011.

December 21: Round Lake has wet out nicely and would be rutless and sailable if it would get cold for a couple of nights, but that's not going to happen. We've got warm rain coming and that will flatten everything then it's going to be cold next week.
    Saratoga Lake is snowcovered with some wet-out areas that are newly frozen in the middle, not safe at all. But Mangino's Restaurant at the botttom of the lake is offering parking and access for $5. a day this season. This is good news! It's just east of the South Shore Marina.

December 17: We are hopelessly socked in, maybe 20 inches of snow has fallen in some areas. So the shallow lakes are out, but lakes that hadn't snapped over are still in play.
The tune-up clinic in Boston was a big success!

December 12: There was sailing last weekend, but I had stuff to do. Now we're having a bit of a rainy meltout in New England. Round Lake is completely frozen, but there is a lot of water on top. We're supposed to get some snow tomorrow, so maybe it will all wet out and make a nice combination of old and new ice and black and snow ice with no ridges developing. We'll see.
    I'm going to go to the tuneup clinic this Saturday over by Boston and maybe go sailing if there's ice around.

December 6: Went to Round Lake today, it's not there yet. There's no traffic on the lake, some areas of walkable but also areas of thin skim. I'll check again early next week, but it looks like there is going to be sailing on Quabog near Sturbridge in MA this weekend. I can't go, but this looks like the first sail of the season. Call the hotline for latest info: 508-481-1011.

November 29: Go here for "Black Ice" the newsletter for the New England Ice Yacht Association. There is ice out west, Wisconsin and Montana. In fact the Western Championships are scheduled for he weekend of Dec 8. Some ice is reported in Canada too. Be patient, it will come...

October 24: Welcome to the 2007-08 iceboating season! The NEIYA swapmeet, banquet, business meeting, and awards ceremony is going to be held Saturday November 10 from 9am to 3pm with the lunch starting at noon.
    This meeting is a must for anyone who wants to find out about the sport and maybe buy something, see what's available, meet sailors, ask questions, etc. I will be going, so if anyone from the Albany/Saratoga area wants to carpool, just post me.
    Doubletree Westborough Hotel, at the junction of Rte. 495 & Rte. 9 (west). 5400 Computer Dr. Westborough, MA 01581 (one exit north of MA Turnpike on 495) Tel: 508-366-5511


August 15: There may be some progress on the access issue. A new "Saratoga Park" is being planned at the site of the old Waterfront Restaurant. It's at the north end of the lake, but it will be on the lake side of the bridge.
    When will it be finished? Will it be public or residents only? Will it be open in the winter? Please post if you hear anything, and I'll post here as soon as I find out.

2007--2008 season above

2006--2007 season below

Tuesday, Mar 27: Even the guys in Maine are hanging up their boats, though there is a report that Chicky was sailed yesterday. The Montreal group reports that they're still sailing. Memphremagog is a possible destination, plenty of wind tomorrow.

Monday, Mar 19: Just as all the lakes were flattening out and freezing, we get 16 inches of snow on a Friday. What a season. The storm affected most of New England but the Maine group is reporting lovely conditions on Megunticook. Just above Chickawaukee, it's a 6 hour drive.

Thursday, Mar 15: Saratoga is flattened out from the rain, the ice is still tight to the shore. We have some cold nights coming up but I doubt that it will be enough to heal all the drain holes, tighten up the slush, etc.
    In any case, since there are no public launches for masted craft on Saratoga Lake and the marinas are closed in the winter, you can't get on this lake anyway unless you know someone with frontage -- I won't mention it again.
    Round Lake is done, the launches have opened up.

Thursday, Mar 8: Webster Pond is being sailed. May be a good Saturday destination. Wallenpaupack (PA) is also being sailed.

Monday, Mar 5: Webster (Chabunagungamaug) was sailed Sunday. Roger L. reports the surface is pretty crappy, but sailable. Tomorrow is too cold and windy, maybe Wednesday.

Saturday, Mar 3: Pretty sure Champlain got hit with the Thursday night snow storm. There is a chance of some sailing Sunday, at Webster Pond or Lake Massabesic in NH. Looks like good wind on Sunday.

Wednesday, Feb 28: The Nordic Skater site reports good black ice on Champlain below Essex, Charlotte. Safari to Button Bay?

Tuesday, Feb 27: I found out that there was some good sailing on Saturday, Webster Pond in Mass. Not enough breeze on Sunday, and now there is no wind in all of New England for a few days.
    I hear that they tried plowing Lake George, but it was a bit slushy under the snow.

Friday, Feb 23: Lake George got four inches of new snow last night, Round and Saratoga are also snowed out. High winds are forecast for tomorrow. Sunday looks good if we can find ice.

Monday, Feb 12: Round and Saratoga are still snowed out but Lake George is sailable. Scott J and I sailed Saturday in puffy and changing winds. The air was good but it came and went. There are clear areas out from the village beach, 70% 1 inch snow cover with occasional 4" drifts. The Lake George ice is thick enough to drive onto.
    I know I missed a great weekend over on Long Pond Lakeville in Mass. I understand the club had a terrific regatta weekend there, sure wish I could have made it! ...previous commitments.

Friday, February 9: I hear that Lake George is good, the snow is blown off. I'll be there Saturday morning, the forecast is for 7 to 14 building.
    I had my long 1/4 inch runners profiled by Steve Duhamel of Northwind Iceboats in the fall. Steve did an amazing job on them and they worked perfectly on Wednesday in heavy air and hard glare ice. I highly recommend the service.

Thursday, February 8: Long Pond Lakeville was great yesterday. A little heavy, gusting to 25-30, but the ice was fine and six or eight of us had a pretty good time. This weekend there will be a big NEIYA regatta there.

Tuesday, February 6: Saturday it looked like snow up north, nothing on the hotline so I called Roger L. who said that Billy B. was sailing Quabog Pond (above Sturbridge MA) so I packed up and went over. It's 2 hours exactly to the lake. Quabog had 2.5 inches of snow, more than I expected, but there was tons of wind so we had a great time. Now the destination is Long Pond Lakeville, might go tomorrow.

Friday, January 26: On Saratoga, see above. Round Lake is good though. 4 inches of smooth black with one inch of snow. It hasn't been checked carefully, these notes are from me walking the west side of the lake and talking to fishermen, but I would guess that's it's all good (take care). Andy Hudson and company sailed it a week ago.
    Round lake is a little less than a mile in diameter, just down the road from Saratoga Lake. Exit 11 on the 87-Northway, go east through the village to Rte 9 you'll see the lake, go right for a quarter mile on 9, the third cut in the guardrail is the put-in, such as it is. This weekend there may be a problem with hoardes of ATVs and motorcycles.
     I'll be away this week, but see you on the ice soon!

Monday, January 22: I would have tried Round Lake if I could have got out of commitments yesterday. Now I see that the New England group is sailing Quabog Pond, in MA above Sturbridge.
    Looks like some air coming through Wednesday. If I'm not sicker by then I'll try Round Lake just to sort the equipment out. Andy Hudson and company sailed Round Lake on Sunday, a couple of hazards, but a good report for the most part, light air.

Friday, January 19: Saratoga is completely frozen, but no one is on it, nor should they be. Round Lake has two inches of lovely black ice, half inch of snow, with some brave fishermen trying it out today. We will be having some cold nights soon (21 tonight, 10 Saturday, 9 Sunday), if the snow holds off we will have some local sailing. High winds forecasted for Saturday. That's ok, everythings skinned over, the wind will maybe sublimate some snow.
    Haven't heard from Dan at Canadarago yet, there's a good chance that he got snowed out.

January 18: Dan G says Canadarago near Cooperstown NY has two inches of smooth black ice today. This may be a weekend destination. Dan will try to sail tomorrow, he's not the kind of guy to do anything reckless. By Friday who knows?

January 16: Seems like the water in our little ponds like Round Lake is ready to jump to ice. It's cold, it's done all the convecting it's going to do, and if it gets a little snow on it that will help. What you need is a night like tonight (3 degrees) and the lake will snap over and then start building. Let's hope. Wednesday night is going to be better, cold and calm, so what's left of the lakes will surely go then. There's also Long Pond in the Grafton Lakes on rte 2 out of Troy.
    Lloyd R. reports that Plymouth Pond in Maine is done for. They had quite a good week or so of it.

January 12: Danny Guido just posted from the Cooperstown NY area. I don't think he'd mind if you called him to check the latest conditions.
    "Young's lake located 3 miles east of Richfield springs on rt 20 has 3/4" on the whole lake as of yesterday. I don't think it will be ready for this weekend but should be ok by mid next week as we have a cold snap coming. I am planning on sailing next week after Tuesday. I will be checking it again over the weekend and let everyone know what's up.     My cell is 315 867 8011 Dan

January 10: It's getting cold. I may go up to Maine on the weekend. Plymouth Pond, only ice in the east. Access Rte 7 South of Newport a few miles. Rte 7 runs right beside the lake about 50 feet from the ice at the public launch pad.

December 12, 2006(!): It's in the 40s today, upstate NY has all open water in the middle of December.
    But there have been some good things happening this season. In November the New England Ice Yacht Racing Association's Swapmeet, Annual Meeting, Awards Ceremony, and Banquet was a thoroughly successful event. It was good to see all the faces, the new gear that Steve Duhamel is making, odds and ends for sale, etc.
    The meeting was a sober affair, noting our pals who have passed on since last year, Wayne Fortier and Jon Hix. And the spate of accidents which have occurred lately had everyone thinking about safety.
   Earlier this month there was an off-the-ice tuning event at Steve Lamb's shop near Boston. Here's one of Ted Amaral's pictures showing the gang talking about racing strategy and right-of-way. I wish I could have gone.
    I'm really looking forward to sailing because I've got a new sail to go with my Kent mast and just had my favorite runners profiled. Looking forward to going pretty well.


March 16: I thought the season was over with Lloyd posting that midcoast ice was out, etc. But no! the skeeter guys are having a regatta in Burlington this weekend. Malletts Bay?

March 14: I'm done. The guys had a good time up at Wentworth in NH last weekend but it's over for me. The ice is too spooky. Usually we have lakes like parking lots this time of the year, but not this season.
    I only sailed three times but I got to see everybody, and made some progress with my gear. I got a surface plate and dial indicator now so I can true my runners and get more precise alignment -- slow and steady progress. I just bought a new sail for next season, got all summer to put the numbers on. See you in a few months. Best to everyone.

March 6: At 5:00 Saturday morning I called the hotline and Paul G. and Jeff S. changed my mind about Malletts Bay and we went to Webster for a terrific day of sailing. Thanks to you hotline volunteers!

March 3: Terrific day sailing at Webster Wednesday! Good group, great seeing everybody and meeting some new sailors. Now I'm looking at Malletts Bay for Saturday, Scott Meyer and I may go up.

February 28: Conditions look good at Webster Pond tomorrow, out by where MA, RI, and CT converge. Thanks to Roger and Bob for the report.
Dave Fortier is improving. He is now listed in fair condition.

February 27: I trekked out to Sunapee for the Wayne Fortier memorial gathering on Saturday. Forecast called for snow and fluky winds so I didn't even take my boat. It was the most extreme brunch I've ever been to (gusty winds, snow, temps in the teens). Good to see everyone, thanks to the CIBC for hosting. It's great to be a part of this group.
    Oh, and by the way, although the weekend snow kept north for the most part, Round Lake is out of business with two inches of snow and a multitude of ATV and snowmobile ruts.

February 24: As it turned out, it was too windy to sail Bantam on Friday. I would have needed a storm sail. Destination is for Sunapee tomorrow, though sailing conditions don't look good.

February 23: Pleasant sail on Round Lake this morning. No one there, I was careful. The wind came up, light, I had a few nice runs. this was my first sail of the season so I really enjoyed it.
    I recently zeroed in my runners with a surface plate, a tip from Dave Fortier, and realigned my chocks -- the boat worked pretty well. There were some pylons out on the ice so I made a little course and practiced mark roundings until the wind died and some wet snow started to fall.
    There will be a memorial sail on Saturday at Sunapee. The ISAs are called for this weekend at Mallets Bay in VT. But it looks like the most fun will be tomorrow at Bantam -- not much snow and tons of wind.

February 20: This is a sad day in New England. At Sunapee yesterday there was a collision. This is the report from the Manchester (NH) Union Leader. I don't have any other details. My heart goes out to the Fortier families, and here's hoping for a quick recovery for Dave.

Ice boat collision kills sailor on Sunapee
by Scott Brooks
Union Leader Staff
New London- A Massachusetts man was killed Sunday morning in an ice boat collision on Lake Sunapee, authorities reported. Wayne Fortier, 67, of Wellesley, Mass., was pronounced dead at New London Hospital. His brother, David Fortier, 47, of Biddeford, Maine was transported to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, according to New London police. The ice boats collided near Soo-Nipi Park. Emergency crews responded at 10:55 am.

February 19: I think I'm going to try Saratoga tomorrow, Monday. Should be good, they're calling for 10 mph. The Lake has had a few nights of cold, and it's flattened out from top to bottom, which means five miles of sailing without ridges. If the South Shore Marina isn't open I'll go down the road to Round Lake. I haven't checked either lake, so take care.
    Here's something, The put-in at Manning cove has been blocked off. The only available access is from the South Shore Marina, and they don't seem to be opening on the weekends this year!

February 16: Saratoga looks beautiful. a good layer of flattened out snow ice with no ridges. It's punky this afternoon, it's 58 degrees today, but it's set up for the freeze tomorrow night. There are some walkers on the lake, and one shanty on the south end. I wouldn't venture out today, that's for sure, but if it doesn't snow, with the cold coming this week we may have the whole lake to sail.

February 9: Despite a few cold nights, the lake seems to have broken up. How much open water there is I haven't checked, but according to this morning's paper conditions are not good.

February 2: According to Karl, who lives on the lake, it's looking like March at Saratoga. The lake has a wet surface, occasional fishermen can be seen. A few cold nights could do wonders.

January 6: A note from Dave Fortier from Chickawaukee in the Camden area of Maine:
    "All I can say is FABULOUS. We had a fabulous weekend on Chicky. Cruisers, racers, skaters, and spectators. Winds were light but the ice was close to perfect so as long as your alignment was good so was life. Eric Anderson was the man to beat winning both the 2005 and 2006 Link Davis Regatta. Results to follow. Many thanks to Lloyd for his hospitality. Lloyd, that deer skin vest is the ultimate in cruising attire! Fred and Lloyd kept the beans and franks flowing from the campfire it was all a treat. The glider and bald eagle overhead were a distraction for those racing, come to think of it Eric said that he did not see either! I guess I went a bit too far getting my head out of the boat. A great time was had by all. Thanks, Dave"

December 22: Saratoga Lake is unsailable as of today. Thin ice covered with two inches of styrofoam means that the lake has some thawing and freezing to do before it gets good. I will keep you posted.
    Meanwhile they're sailing everywhere else, Maine, New Jersey, Cooperstown NY, check NEIYA Ice reports button on right.
    Karl Avenarius, who lives on the lake said that a ridge has developed from Mannings Cove to Snake Island. This could mean there will be an uninterrupted piece of ice over the lower third of the lake.
    I'll be hitting the ice in Late January because of a time consuming project I'm finishing up. See you soon!

November 15: It was a great day for the meeting and swap meet over at the Westborough Windham. Good to see everyone. Officers were elected, Luke turned over the commodoreship to Eben Whitcomb, and the vice-commodore is Steve Lamb. One thing that has changed is the tune-up event is going to be held off the ice, at Steve's shop. This is a good idea because the problem was, if there is ice, who wants to stand around talking? or like last year, the event ends up being skipped because of conditions. Pretty sure it's December 17, but let me confirm.
    The other thing interesting about Steve being vice commodore is that he's not a racer; this may slightly change the nature of the club, we'll see. Rich Crucet gave a report on Jon Hix's condition, I guess we won't be seeing Jon on the ice this season, gonna miss him.

October 17, 2005: The New England club's swap meet is coming up. Basically a bunch of guys standing around in a motel parking lot looking at iceboats and iceboat parts for sale, the NEIYA Swap Meet and Awards Banquet is a good place to learn a bit about the sport of iceboating, and meet the people who are doing it. I recommend it. If anyone from the Albany area wants to go give me a call at 518-436-9498 or post me.

Announcement from Jeff Soderholm:

New England Ice Yacht Association Annual Meeting/Swap Meet & Awards Banquet Saturday Nov 12th. Location: Windham Westborough at junction of Rt 495 and rt 9 west in Westborough MA
Hotel phone number 508-366-5511
12:00 buffet menu $20.00, cash bar
NEIYA Membership Dues $10
Call Amos Heckendorf or Connie Nicolas for reservations by Nov 8th

Anyone who may be lurking out there in the New England Area who is interested in getting started or finding out more about the sport of iceboating this is your opportunity to come check out or even buy some iceboating equipment and meet some of the people from your area involved in the sport. The swap meet starts outside in the rear of the Wyndam approximately 10-10:30am.

Start of notes concerning the 2005-2006 season

Saturday March 19, 2005: Strange but true, there's still ice on South Watuppa in Fall River MA. It only lasts till noon on a day like today, but even with temps in the 50s there's good sailing in the morning.
     The thing about this lake is there seems to be no snowmobile ruts. ok a few, looks like ATV tracks, but for the most part the lake stays smooth, so it melts a bit, freezes at night, and is sailable. We may get a bit of real cold and this lake will be great.
    There was a good crowd Saturday, thanks to the people checking the ice and letting us know. My boat is working much better with new super chocks and better alignment. I had a good day.
     Watuppa may be open water by now...

February 19: Middle of the season and I haven't been writing much here. The reason is I'm completely inundated by work. This has got to change.
    People sailed last weekend at S. Wattuppa, and they're sailing this weekend somewhere, but I haven't been sailing in two weeks! I'll be posting as the coming weekend gets close.

February 4: The commodore has called the New England's for Sebago, so I'm heading up there in the morning.

February 3: Pretty sure the safari is to Sebago Lake in south western Maine this weekend. Only 4.5 hours from Albany. Nason's Beach on the west side of the lake, take 90 to 495 to 95 to exit 7, 114 north through Goreham, Nason's Beach is on the right. Check back tomorrow for confirmation.

January 31: Word is that Sebago in Maine is very nice. I hope conditions hold for the weekend. Nason's Beach is 4.5 hours from Albany.

January 24: Saratoga is completely snowed out until further notice. 10 inches?

January 21: At the south end of the lake it looks sailable. There is only an inch or so of snowcover, but it's denser now. At Manning Cove drifting has occurred with snow hummocks 5 inches high, at least on the west side of the lake.
    They're calling for 10 mph wind today, high of 5. There's a group up from NJ sailing today so if you come you'll have company. Saturday, high of 10 degrees, snow, and 10-15 winds.

January 20: Saratoga received 1-2 inches of flufffy snow last night. So, the ice is great, but there's some snowcover, soon to be rutted by snowmobiles. I'll check again tomorrow.

January 18: Saratoga was sailed Sunday and Monday.
It is clear sailing on the whole Lake. There's 1.5 x 5 miles of ridgeless ice 5 inches thick yesterday and more now of course. I've never seen it so good.
    After today's temps the lake is almost as safe as a parking lot. Caution though, one boat-busting hole was spotted along the southwest shore.
    Saratoga got less than 1 inch of fluffy powder on Sunday Night which is sublimating more than drifting. The snow coverage may become dense and nasty but there were large cleared areas when we left last night.

January 16: Saratoga Lake surface is a 8.5, with large areas of 9.5.
There is an open seam cutting off the bottom eighth of the lake, probably healed tonight.
    Sailed today, the lake is safe (caution, ice is never safe) with a uniform 5+ inches of ice. We put in at Manning Cove, but there's only parking for four cars. More will have to put in at the South Shore Marina, or unload at Manning Cove and park and walk a bit.
    Supposed to be light snow tonight and breezes of 10-15 tomorrow. Two of us at least will be sailing that I'm sure of.

January 15: Saturday, sailed Round Lake today. The rain has smoothed it out pretty well. Saratoga is also good with no ridges yet. I'll be sailing there tomorrow, (Sunday) from the South Shore Marina, the wind is supposed to be better.
    Directions to the South Shore Marina: Coming from the south, take exit 12 from 87, go right at the end of the ramp onto Plaines & Dunning Road. Go five miles to the stop sign, you'll see the Villa Louisa restaurant, the marina is right behind it. They're open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday -- $5.00 a day to park and launch. 518-584-9125
    Northeast of Albany NY, Round Lake is exit 11 on rte 87 Adirondack Northway. Go east to rte 9, turn right, lake on on left. It's 3/4 of a mile in circumference, but pretty open to the wind.

January 9: Albany area lakes are completely snowed in. Warm temps this week may improve the situation.Still no ice at all on Lake George.
    Good 24 hour snowfall map for New England:

January 5, 2005: Round Lake is good! Saratoga Lake still looks a little spooky, and the put-in is still posted no trespassing. This is ironic, Saratoga has invited me to be a part of their winter fest, set up a boat and hand out info, etc, meanwhile you can't even legally get onto the lake. Round Lake on the other hand has 7 inches and easier access. It's a bit punky around the edges from the rains, but that will tighten up.
    They're saying 5 inches of snow tomorrow, so today was the day.
    Northeast of Albany NY, Round Lake is exit 11 on rte 87 Adirondack Northway. Go east to rte 9, turn right, lake on on left. It's 3/4 of a mile in circumference.

January 4, 2005: Happy New Year! Well the New England group had a nice weekend of sailing over on Quabog Pond, just off the Mass Pike almost to Worcester. Around here there's nothing. Freakish warm weather has us melted for the most part. New England is calling a regatta for this weekend. I'll probably go wherever they decide to have it. Check the hotline, 508-481-1011.

December 27: "DN60 Ice Boat: EC, must see, $2600   Schenectady, NY  (518) 374-1097  Ted Clements." Scott Meyer found this in the Want Ad Digest. I've seen the boat, this is a pretty nice outfit.

December 23: Karl Avenarius says that Saratoga Lake froze completely on the 21st. Karl also says that the owners of the property at the Manning Cove put-in want to get rid of the access. Glad to hear that arrangements will be made nearby at Karl's frontage. This is good news, it would be a shame to lose access to the most interesting ice plate on the lake. It's still a shame to lose the convenience of the Manning Cove fishing access. It's wierd that a lake this big has no public access for masted boats.

December 18: The south end of Saratoga Lake has snapped across beautifully. At Manning Cove there's quite a bit of open water but the lake is mostly ice covered, looks good.
    Interesting development at Manning Cove put in is that whoever controls that property has it fenced and posted against access. I hope this is just until the ice is safe. I'll ask around, we have precious little access to this lake.
    Round Lake (just south of Saratoga Lake) is smooth and covered, two inches thick at the Rte 9 put in.
    The Mohawk river has snapped across, some ice floating in the Hudson.

December 6: This is a great bargain! Paul Gervais writes: <I have a Gougeon wedge style DN boat for sale with wood /glass mast, ash plank,3/16 insert runners ,aluminum boom, harken blocks , tapered sheet etc. This was my spare boat max cockpit, 19" wide hull in good condition with Shore wide range sail and foam battens. Asking $1500.00 located in VT . If interested e-mail me @ pjgervais@juno.com>

November 24: Steve Duhamel has a new shipment of 1D sails. "Power, F Speed, Speed and Full Power sail along with some German Chocks." He's also taking orders for storm sails.Speaking of storm sails, at the Winnie The Hard Way event, it was blowing 30+, so it was ill advised for anyone to go with a full sail. That's my boat third from the left, full sail. The only way I could stay in control on the way back from Center Harbor was to head directly downwind and sheet in. Lucky the wind was pretty much aligned with the course.

November 23 posting: The swapmeet has come and gone. Steve Duhamel remembered to bring me the Estonian ski masks, he just gave them to me and said, "you and your wife have a nice time tonight." I picked up my new mast from Jeff Kent so I may be a little faster this season. Steve sold me a cover for it and I was all set.
    Lunch was good, Lloyd was down from Maine, Dick Price was there, Jon Hix and Charlotte. And Doug Sharp and Jeff Soderholm and Jeff Brown. It was good to see Rich Crucet as always. Roger Livingston was there, "T" Thieler, Greg Cornelius, and Luke Buxton and Eben Whitcomb, Leo Healey, Eric Anderson and Dave Fortier.
    One of the best stories of last season for me was Dave F. on Winnie, losing a batten, he sails to the shore, parks his boat, goes into the woods and makes another one from a tree branch, and returns to the hardway parade. Good to see Jack Erikson, Ted Amaral, all the guys.
    Leo talked about the history of the "hard way" event, awards were awarded, thanks and congratulations were given and received, NEIYA went back to the IDNIYRA runner rules for all races, Rich C. talked about his Great South Bay accident last season.
    A good time was had by all. Let's have a nice long, safe season. See you on the ice.

October 19 posting: There's a chill in the air, I got the NEIYA newsletter about the November swapmeet. The madness begins. Also in the newsletter was Jeff Brown's account of the Winnepesaukee expedition last spring. A very nice writeup Jeff, and I'm so glad to have been there, but sometimes I think that wewere a bit out of our minds -- going so fast over rough and unsurveyed ice.
    I will be driving over to Westborough that Saturday so anyone from the Albany area who wants to go can ride with me. Here is Jeff Soderholm's notice of the banquet and swapmeet:
    The New England Ice Yacht Association Annual Meeting, Awards Banquet & Swap Meet will be held Saturday November 13th 2004 at the Wyndham Hotel Westborough 5400 Computer Drive Westborough MA 01581 phone 1-508-366-5511.
    Starting times--Swap Meet outside in the parking lot to the rear of hotel approximately 9:00am till 11:30am resuming after the conclusion of meeting and ending 3:00pm.
    Social Hour Cash Bar 11:30am-12:00pm. Luncheon Buffet begins 12:00 Noon
Please contact secretary treasurer Amos Heckendorf by Tuesday November 9th if you plan on attending the luncheon (508)481-6223. Cost for the luncheon is $20.00 payable at the door.
    Buffet Menu-Tossed Caesar Salad, Grilled Chicken, Chilled Tortellini Salad & Orzo Salad, Bread, Basil Focaccia, Tiramisu, Fruit, Coffee & Tea.
    DIRECTIONS: Take Route 495 to Exit 23 for Route 9 West to Computer Drive/Research Drive exit(1st exit); bear right at the end of the exit. Drive 1/2 mile, and the hotel is on the left. It's easy to find but you can always call the hotel on the way if you get lost 1-508-366-5511.
    Anyone in the New England area states that is interested in finding out more about iceboating this is your opportunity to come meet some of the people actively sailing your area and ask questions.
    You should plan to come early and attend the swap meet prior to the luncheon if at all possible. This is a good time to view some of the equipment we use!

September 29, 2004: The Hudson River group says, "A DN is available as part of a silent auction in Germantown this weekend."
    There is some sort of fundraiser for the town; a local resident pulled a DN out of his garage to donate. There may be a $400 minimum bid; Boat is supposed to be set up to see in the town hall in Germantown for this silent auction this Saturday.

------------------2004-2005 season begns--------------------------------------

March 29 posting: "Spring Cookout and Skate Evaluation Event At Composite Solutions Inc." Steve Duhamel posted a message about this event to the New England forum. Get Lunch, get your runners evaluated, and get a tour of Composite Solutions. Sounds good to me. Here's more of Steve's message:
    "Serious sailors should take this opportunity to have your runners checked out for straightness and rocker. See exactly what you need to do to bring this critical piece of equipment into doing what it is supposed to. Get your runner program off to a good start for next season. Some skippers sailed close to 30 days this season under all kinds of conditions. Speak with Jeff Kent, Greg Cornelius and Steve Duhamel to discuss what you have in mind for your runner program. Or on different areas of concern, from hull to plank alignment, chock alignment or the basic tune up. Bring your plank and mast for evaluation.
Date: April 10, 2004
Time: 10:00AM to 2:00 PM
Place: 41 Sharp Street, Hingham, MA,
Phone Number: 781-335-4650
This is an RSVP event, as we would like at least 20 people to participate. Please respond no later than April 3, 2004. Call 781-826-8004, 781-335-4650 or E-mail nthwind1@aol.com or jeffkent@csi-composites.com"

March 24 posting: Just read Jeff Soderholm's post about ice in New England for this weekend. I'm sure there is good sailing this weekend somewhere, but I'm done, don't tempt me. Maybe if our own Saratoga Lake turned up good I'd put the boat together one more time. It's been a great season and it's a great group, see you in the fall.
    Last Saturday I was on Champlain with the New England stalwarts, racing in the Eastern DN championships. Jack Erikson lent me a composite mast so I would stand half a chance. Thanks Jack! When the mast would pop out and start bending, I started to understand the whole bendy mast idea. Yes, the boat does go faster. It is strange though, to see your mast taking off at 45 degrees to the deck.
    The first race was called due to a passing blizzard. Out racing, and suddenly you can't see anything but white. We all found our way back to the mark and Steve M. led us in some voodoo rituals designed to make the snow go away. A man of many talents!
     I decided to go sailing as it started to clear up a bit, got out of sight of the group and BANG, my rig fell down. The bow fastener on the forestay had broken, and with the whiteout nobody could see that I was out of luck. Bending the remaining part of the attachment around through a hole in the chainplate and stealing a fastpin from a block to fasten it, I was able to get going again. Meanwhile everyone had gone to lunch. Jack noticed I wasn't there and went out looking, but I was able to limp to the put-in with my jury-rig, get new shrouds from him and go out racing again.
    I did terribly -- can't seem to find the layline, couldn't always get the mast to work -- but it was fun. It's been a great season, I hope everybody has a great summer. Special thanks to Jeff S. for finding ice, letting us know.

March 18 posting: There will be a gathering at Burlington Saturday and Sunday. The Easterns Regatta will be held on lake Champlain launching from Perkins Pier right downtown.
    Exit 14w from I-89, go about 3 miles towards Burlington on Main Street till you hit Battery St. L on Battery, R in two blocks when you hit Maple St. Always check the hotline.

March 13 posting: The Spring Frolic at Winnie in NH was a great day of sailing. Many thanks to Jeff Brown who stepped up to organize this particular Hard Way safari. I figure it was a fifty mile treck altogether. I arrived a bit late, glad that the group didn't leave before I got set up. It was howling, and sailors were waiting around for the wind to die down.
    The upwind trip was a hard one for me because I bent my aluminum mast in the first ten minutes and had to deal with that the whole way, couldn't point on port, couldn't sheet hard on starboard. Then just before arriving at Center Harbor, I lost a runner bolt from my front runner. There was a True Value hardware a short walk from the landing site, so I just walked over and got another one, stainless even.The ice was rough and the wind was rougher (Don Kretchmer said he measured a pretty steady 35 at one point).     There were no big dangerous ridges crossing the lake, but there were things you had to watch out for, and some very hard bumps. Downwind was a wiiild ride.
    It's a tribute to the DN design that the boats were able to perform without breaking under such extreme stress. Even so there was one broken plank, a broken side shroud, some spectacular spinouts and upsets. Everyone pitched in to help anyone who had a problem.
    Worst injury was when Jeff Brown pitchpoled and got some scrapes and bruises. Everybody made it back ok, it was tons of fun. I've heard about the Spring Frolic and "Winnipesaukee the Hard Way" all these years and it was great to be able to participate.


March 11 posting: Watching the Wolfeboro NH forecasts it looks like good wind on Saturday, but they're calling for 2 to 4 inches of snow tomorrow. Time will tell.
    Karl reports that Saratoga Lake is still rutted and crunchy, getting spooky in spots.

March 3 posting: The ice on the ponds along the southern shore of New England is either gone, unsafe, or so rotten around the edges you can't get onto the plate. Now we wait through this heatwave and hope for some wetting out of the snow on the northern lakes.
    Winnepesaukee, for instance, has 26 inches of black ice, so some melting days will clear up the surface and not hurt the foundation. With the exact amount of arctic air at exactly the right moment we'll be all set for some spring sailing.
     Stop laughing! It's been known to happen.

February 26 posting: Webster is still good (great yesterday -- yeehaa!), but may not last til the weekend. The Hudson River group is also sailing, click the button on the right. This is late season sailing, take special care.

February 23 posting: Check this link and this for news from the North Americans regatta in Sandusky OH.
    Sunday at Webster was fun. Didn't get cold enough the night before so the surface was a little soft, and the sun softened it more as the day went on. Thanks to Doug Sharp! who let me use hisski/runner combos which very effectively extended my sailing day, you bet.
    We have a couple of cold nights now, and forecasts of good wind Wednesday, anyone want to go to Webster on Wednesday? It'll be a bit bumpy from the ATVs, snowmobiles, and motorcycles that were tearing up the slush as we left.

February 21 posting: Saturday got rained out at Webster, going to try Sunday.

February 19 posting: Roger Livingston reports that Webster Lake (lake Chaubunagungamaug) should be good for the weekend. Two hours from Albany, take the Mass pike to Worcester, south on 395 to exit 1. At the end of the ramp take a left. Go under the bridge and take another left as if you were going back on 395. The launch site is along this road. Check the windmaps, forecasts.

February 16 posting: Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Rich Crucet!
    Safety isn't complicated. When I come to launch I should not sail until I've asked a few sailors about any hazards there may be out there. If I see someone setting up a boat, and I've been out sailing, I've got to assume that they don't know about the hazards and it's my responsibility to make sure to tell them. Hazards have to be marked, posted, talked about. It's the most important thing.
    Watuppa was delightful on Saturday. It was sunny and in the 40s but the ice stayed hard all day long.

February 13 posting: Easterns are cancelled, but southern New England is still the place for ice. Saturday is going to be 15 to 20 diminishing to 10 to 15 according to windcaster. As of now I'm going to Watuppa.
    First exit off rte 24 south of 195 going toward Newport. L at end of ramp, L at first light (Jefferson) follow Jefferson to the boat launch.

February 12 posting: NEIYA is holding the Easterns at South Watuppa Lake this weekend if everyting goes well. It's near Westport Mass about 3.5 hours drive from Albany. Check the NEIYA site for directions. Call the hotline for last minute info.

February 10 posting: Redbank NJ was good this weekend but the wind was pretty rough. We took two boats down yesterday, Monday, and it was still very puffy. Warm too. The ice was deteriorating before our eyes. After lunch what had been little cracks were now dangerous seams. I know, I sailed into one of them (crash ...splinter). Gerald Kufner also found some thin ice that day.
    Anyone who hasn't sailed Red Bank should make it a point to go sometime, it's spectacular. Be sure to go upstairs in the clubhouse. It's like an iceboat museum lounge with hot soup and coffee.

February 6 posting: Snowstorms Tuesday and Friday have New England ice looking pretty dismal. Of course Saratoga is completely and irrevocably buried, Vermont is not reporting any ice, the only ice I see is on Long Island, and maybe the coastal lakes below Boston on Sunday and Monday. Also check Redbank NJ. Here's the Long Island hotline: (631) 475-7747

February 1 posting: Went to Sebago Lake in Southern Maine Friday and Saturday. Hard to imagine bigger or better ice, fabulous. Only 4.5 hours from Albany. Nason's Beach on the west side of the lake, take 90 to 495 to 95 to exit 7, 114 north through Goreham, Nason's Beach is on the right.

January 28 posting: We got a good 8 inches of powder in Albany, probably more at Saratoga Lake. According to the snow coverage map the storm missed the eastern coastal area of New England, from the Cape to Maine. I guess I'll be driving east this weekend. The VT hotline says that they also got 3 to 5 inches on Champlain.

January 27 posting: Snow tonight, here and to the south, not good for the Hudson Valley.
    Here's something of interest to Albany sailors, there's activity at Spofford Lake near Chesterfield NH. Rte 7 east, not such a hike. Spofford will also get tonight's snow, but it's a site to keep in mind.

January 26 posting: Saratoga Lake is covered with 1 to 3 inches of dense snow, drifted and rutted. Unsailable.

January 9 posting: The Saratoga Lake Ice Report is signing off for a couple of weeks. Be back on the 24th.

January 8 posting: Dan Johnsen is resting and healing after surgery on his legs December 31. Dan sailed his DN into an open seam on Saratoga Lake about a mile from shore, pretty much wrecking his boat and breaking both of his legs.
    Frank Wall and his daughter Katelyn were sailing closeby in an Arrow, and I was not far away in my DN. Dan hauled himself out of the water on the wrong side of the seam and told Frank that he thought his ankle was broken. Frank called 911 on his celphone, I tossed Dan my throwline and he tied it around himself, gripped itwith arms outstretched and we all three pulled him across the seam. By that time we could see the emergency equipment arriving at the Marina.
    We rolled Dan into my boat and sent him to shore with Katelyn pushing, thinking that the ambulance people would meet them halfway. As it turned out, even though there were a lot of people coming and going on the ice and that it was clearly safe to walk on, the emergency personnel would not help until Dan was pushed up onto the boat launch. Katelyn had quite a bit to do pushing Dan all the way to shore.
    Dan now has a plate and six screws, four pins in his left foot and leg, a cast to heal his broken right leg, and quite a bit of pain. He'll be laid up for quite a while. Dan can be reached at 518-899-5360, 61 Pepperbush Place, Ballston Spa NY 12020.

January 6 posting: Saratoga has an inch of snow, a half inch of ice crust, and more snow on top. We wouldneed a major thaw to get this lake back into shape. Other lakes in our area are probably the same, but there are lakes which haven't frozen yet which may be coming in, lake George, the Champlain bays.

January 5th posting: Saratoga got about 3 inches of wet snow last night, so I'd say no sailing for a couple of days. the lake was wet, and the snow is already grayed out, so with the cold that's coming we may be good to go by the weekend. I'm not sailing for a while, I promised Cathy I'd go someplace warm this winter. Be back on Jan 23. Call the Marina at 518-584-9125. Or the New England hotline at 508-481-1011.

January 3rd posting: Saratoga Lake received a ton of rain today, it's wet and the snow ice near the shore is slushy. I walked out to the black ice and it's still 5 inches. There is some cold coming in, and that may leave the snow ice rough, but I think the black ice will keep its surface. Sailing now while it's wet would be very dangerous because the seam would be almost invisible.

January 2nd posting: 70% chance of rain and temps in the 50s are forecast for Saturday. Wind is 10 to 15 though.
    On Wednesday the 31st Dan Johnsen from Ballston Spa NY hit the seam crossing Saratoga Lake and broke both of his legs. A tragic accident. Dan is in Saratoga Hospital at 518-580-4392.
    Saratoga ice is still good. I think the lake got a little snow this morning which may make THE SEAM more visible, but it could be that the cold last night partially healed the seam, making it even more dangerous. The seam runs clear across the lake almost a mile north of the South Shore Marina. IT WILL BE TERRIBLE IF THERE IS ANOTHER ACCIDENT. Please exercise care.

December 30: Tony at the marina says that no one sailed today because of the rain but that the ice is still good. There are some snow showers in the forecast but nothing serious. Tomorrow sounds perfect, 10-15.

December 28: Saratoga is good. Miles of smooth black ice. Sailed Saturday, light but we got some rides. Today the breeze didn't fill in, but the ice stayed hard. Watch for a breeze coming through because we've got ice.

December 26: Saratoga looks good. Some bumps, some 1/4 inch shell, but good thickness, and better after tonight's 18 degrees. The lake has not been thoroughly checked, proceed with caution! Wind is only 5-10 for tomorrow, better on Sunday.
    Our usual launch site, Mannings Cove, would require elaborate planking strategies, but the South Shore Marina has a "drive on" situation. I'll be sailing Saturday am. South Shore Marina charges $5.00 a car to park, but there's a restaurant, etc.
    Coming from the south, take exit 12 from 87 northway , go right at the end of the ramp (east) onto Plaines & Dunning Road. Go five miles to the stop sign, you'll see the Villa Louisa restaurant, the marina is right behind it. They're open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday -- $5.00 a day to park and launch. 518-584-9125

December 23: Happy holidays everyone!
Here is the New England event calendar from Luke Buxton:
NEIYA Tune-up clinic January 3rd, rain date 4th
Doc Fellows regatta (plates only) January 10th, rain date 11th
New Englands January 31st rain date February 1st

December 22 posting: Went up to Saratoga this morning. After a very limited survey on foot, I have to say it looks good. A dusting of snow on 6 or 7 inches of ice. This is the first day the fishermen are out according to some locals, and one contact I called whose house overlooks the lake says that there is no open water in sight. Take care, this is a spooky lake early in the season.
    I've had a week of flu, and so I'm buried at work, no sailing for me.

December 21 posting: Appreciate eveyone's reports of sailing on Quaboag in Mass this weekend, I've had the flu.

December 13 posting: Saratoga has a bit of ice in bays and near the shore, perhaps 5%.
    The NEIYA Tune up will be held Jan 3rd rain date 4th. Check the hotline for finalized date and location: 508-481-1011.

November 20 posting: The Jamboree was teriffic. Jeff Kent and Henry Bossett were there. Jan Gougeon, Ron Sherry and Paul Goodwin came over from Michigan. Dan Clapp was there from NJ, Vermont's Bob Dill,Lloyd Roberts from Maine. Very interesting. Jon Hix and Dick Price deserve high praise for putting together a fantastic event.

November 5 posting: The NEIYA meeting and swap was well attended -- awards were presented, appreciations expressed, officers were elected, class issues were discussed, and stuff was bought and sold out in the parking lot. Issues included runner limitation, Optimist class youth sailing, ways to grow the membership.
    One thing that's curious is that there are no used boats for sale. Either the sport is growing and getting more popular or people are hoarding boats in garages and basements as their value appreciates.
    The next event is the Jamboree which looks like an amazing time with Ron Sherry and company coming in from Michigan. See below.

October 28 posting: The NEIYA swapmeet, meeting, and banquet is this weekend in central Mass, Saturday November 1. Go to the NEIYA site for directions. I'll be driving from Albany if anyone wants a lift. 518-436-9498

May 23: Jon Hix and Dick Price are kicking off the '03/'04 season with the announcement of the second Iceboat Jamboree in Saratoga Springs. Here's Jon's announcement:

THE SECOND ICEBOAT JAMBOREE November 14-16th Gideon Putnam Hotel, Saratoga Springs,NY.
    Dick Price and Jon Hix began thinking in March about holding ICEBOAT JAMBOREE #2 -which helps get all the pieces together for the sailor determined to be faster and more savvy while dreaming about that new winter ice and sailing the wind fantastic.
Because of the interest and success of the first ICEBOAT JAMBOREE, Nov.'01, where sailing faster and optimizing yourself and ice boat were presented, we wanted to expand the program this time to be more diverse. We were very fortunate with the first Jamboree to bring together a congenial group of sailors at various levels of racing experience and add to this a mix top-notch sailors who offered to share their own expertise and observations with the participants.
    The Second Iceboat Jamboree will include many of these top-notch sailors including Jan and Meade Gugeon, Jeff Kent, Henry Bossett, Bob Dill, Lloyd Roberts (Think Ice), Greg Cornelius, Dan Clapp and Ron Sherry.

While the agenda is very flexible, we are setting our plans to cover the following:
Sailing Tactics - Wind - Mark Rounding - Mast - Runners - Ice - Hull - Plank - Sail - Safety

We are also working on a presentation devoted to Stern Steerers...

Seminar cost,only $19.95 Send :$20 to Jon Hix PO BOX 487 Wolfeboro Falls NH 03896 (we'll give you the nickel back at the door).

Your Name___________________________________



ROOM RESERVATIONS; MUST BE MADE DIRECTLY WITH THE GIDEON PUTNAM....Please make your reservation early.."Iceboat Jamboree Room Block"...Flat rate for single/double/triple occupany is $119.00 plus NYS tax. The room block will only be available until October24th. Tel #1-800-732-1560,web site,www.gideonputnam.com
    Location: 30 min.north of Albany NY from NYS Thruway via Northway to Exit13N. See website for details and map. Those planning to come by "tin-teepee" should check with NY State for information Tel.1-518-584-2000. The hotel doesn't have parking for same.

2002/2003 season

Thursday March 27: Summing up the season, '02-03 was a fabulous, epic winter. . A good iceboating season, but not locally. Lots of ice but also lots of snow. Lake George was the closest good sailing we had, and it was good for a few weeks. I sailed on Misissquois, the very top of Champlain, Norton and Watuppa on the eastern Mass coast, and had a great day on Bantam early this month. The best thing that happened locally is that we have a couple of new sailors, Ted Clements and Barry Maisel, welcome! Have a great summer everyone, grease your runners, talk to you in the fall.

Friday March 14: As we speak, the skeeters are racing at Champlain near Burlington. And the Eastern Regional DN Championships are in the same general area. Call the hotlines for info.
    Locally, Round Lake has come in nicely, I think it is smoother this weekend than it was last.There's an inch and a half of snow on it now, but the ice is still fast -- at least it was this morning.

Tuesday March 11: Big iceboating party on Champlain near Burlington this weekend. I have to work, can't go. Check the hotlines.

Sunday March 9: The cold continues! Dan Guido reports Otesgo os good. And Jon Hix says that the snow on Bantam is completely wet out, ready for tonight's freeze. Round Lake may be also tightened up again by tomorrow.

Friday March 7: Bantam was great on Tuesday! But then got 6 to 8 nches.
    Barry Maisel from Saratoga says we have local ice. He is going to try Round Lake tomorrow, and I may show up too. Looks like a better breeze on Sunday though.
    I went out to Round Lake Saturday morning. It is free of snow, there are some boat-wrecking bumps to watch out for but it looks sailable.

Monday, March 3: We got rain and then a hard freeze, but according to Karl Avenarius it wasn't enough toflatten our lake.
    Jon Hix tells me that Bantam got the same rain and freeze, and now it looks very good. Good breeze tomorrow, anybody want to go to Connecticut?

Sunday, March 2: Saratoga is still covered with four inches of snow, ruts, etc. Maybe conditions will improve if we get more rain than snow today.
    I ended up going to South Watuppa on Friday, great ice, 10-15 breeze. Had a great time. Didn't risk the drive on Saturday because the wind looked iffy, but I hear they had the New England regatta, and I missed it.

Thursday, February 27: Good reports are coming in from all over. The Hudson is good, Bantam is good I hear from Jon Hix. Thinking of going down to Lake Mahopac tomorrow. The breeze is on the coast. I saw some pix of Watuppa in eastern Mass, and the ice is beautiful -- looks like they will have a breeze tomorrow, too.

Friday, February 21: Saratoga is snowcovered, unsailable.
    Lake George has 4 or 5 inches at Bolton from the last storm, Barry Maisel reports. I hear that Champlain may be clear north of Burlington, but no matter -- the weekend is full of snow and sleet. The ice is there though, 30 inches of it, so don't count Champlain out.
    The Hudson River club is hoping for enough melt and rain so they can get their big boats going again. The boats, including the enormous Jack Frost, are set up at Astor Cove, near the Kingston Rhinebeck bridge.
    Let me know if you're going sailing. 518-436-9498

Friday, February 14: Happy Valentine's Day!
    The Rhinecliff dock was not promising, 3 inches of snow with slush underneath. We could plank on, but with the bad surface and not much wind, we didn't set up. Way up the river I could see a boat sailing, so we decided to check the put-in at Rokeby barns. Couldn't get down there because I didn't have 4-wheel drive. So we went up to Lake George because of Steve Duhamel's post that someone was sailing up there.
    Lake George is good, 20 inches or so of black ice. There is some snow on it, granulated sugar drifts blowing around. Mostly 1-2 inches, sometimes higher, but because they're powdery you can blast right through.
    Lake George Village had about 30% snow cover, but quite sailable in the 10 to 15 we had yesterday. Up the lake (across several killer ridges) the ice was better, less snow and bigger plates with fewer ridges. We had a fantastic day.

Wednesday, February 12: A few of us are going down to Rhinebeck to sail with the Hudson River club tomorrow, launching from the Rhinebeck town dock at Rhinecliff NY. For the latest condition report hit the HRIYC button at right.
    It's going to be pretty cold, John Sperr says to bring food and hot drink, they will have a stove on the ice at Astor Point.

Monday, February 10: Button Bay on Champlain is good I hear. And the HRIYC has boats on the Hudson near Rhinecliff, follow the Hudson River button at right.

Friday, February 7: Scott and I had a safari to Lake George planned for today but it got too calm and snowy. Thursday was the day to be sailing, I had to work. Saturday looks good for wind if we can find some ice without snow on it. Got to sail it when you got it.
    Saratoga flattened out a bit with the recent thaw, but remains unsailable with two inches of dense snowcover with two inches of new snow on top of that, snowmobile ruts, etc.

Tuesday, February 4: Here's a report from the Plattsburg local paper on the DN world championships.
    Check boats for sale, there's a new boat on the list, sounds like a great buy.

Friday, January 31: The North American and World Championship DN regattas start this weekend,Champlain at Valcour below Plattsburg. Click the IDNIYRA button at right for latest info.
    Also, there is a regatta planned at the NSIBYC at Red Bank NJ this weekend. I'm tending toward that if anything, looks like less snow and more wind.

Friday, January 24: Follow the "Hudson River IYC" button at right for more info on the Van Nostrand Cup challenge.
    Also, the New England club is holding the Doc Fellows Regatta in the Southeastern Mass area this Saturday. Follow the NEIYA link for more info. Hotline 508-481-1011.
    More locally some of us are going to Lake George on Saturday. The wind looks good, and it's only an hour from Albany -- the lake is smooth, black and free of snow. Hope to see you there, Million Dollar Beach in Lake George Village. My house: 518-456-1913.

Sunday, January 19: Ice close to Albany! Ted Clements called last night, Lake George has snapped over. He says the entire lake has skatable black ice measuring 7 inches in the middle of the lake. We will be launching today at the souhernmost tip of the lake at Million Dollar Beach.
    Danny Guido also reports that Otsego is in beautiful shape. See his report at the NEIYRA reports page.

January 17 posting: I'm thinking Pocotopaug in Conn. tomorrow. Looks like there will be wind, there's an otherwise pretty quiet weekend wind forecast. I'll try to get someone to go with me, see you there! Call Dave Burnham 860-267-3590 for up to date info.

January 16 posting: Saratoga is a mess. Yes there's ice but also tons of snow and snowmobile ruts.
    Scott Meyer and I did sail yesterday though -- three hours to the east there was a midweek gathering of the faithful at Norton Reservoir below Boston. 20 boats or so, great ice and breeze. Some scrub racing around Jack Erikson's marks.

January 13 posting: Didn't sail again this weekend, but now the ice is getting good across southern New England. A Wednesday trip to Norton res (way the hell) over below Boston is shaping up.
    John Rose posts that there will also be sailing Wednesday on Candlewood Lake in western Conn.

January 10 posting: Saratoga is completely buried of course, as is the whole northeast from Conn to Montreal. The Vermont hotline is saying something about a Champlain bay on North Hero island, may be sailable this weekend. Check the VT hotline Friday night 802-985-1469.

January 3 posting: All the warm rain had set Saratoga up for a good surface, but now the snow has put us out of business again.
    According to the NEIYRA site, the Tuneup event is being melded with the Doc Fellows Regatta, scheduled tentatively for Saturday. Call the hotline for location info. From Albany it looks like going north to the Burlington area is the best bet for the weekend, but it's possible that no one in the NE will be sailing. I have a conflict Saturday but I hope to sail Sunday. NEIYRA hotline (508) 481-1011. And please call me if you're going sailing from the Albany area (518-456-1913).

December 30 posting: The NEIYRA Tuneup is postponed till New Years Day. Call the hotline Tuesday night at (508) 481-1011 for the latest news on location.
    Missisquois Bay Philipsburg Quebec is a good destination at the moment. There's no snow at all above Plattsburgh, and they're driving trucks right onto the lake. Giant sheet of hard black with a few snow hummocks.
    Last Saturday I was all set to watch the Canadian Nationals at Missisquois Bay. Louise D. encouraged me to go ahead and race instead, so I did for the first time ever. I scored really terribly but there is some camaraderie out there at the end of the line with the other aluminum masts, I'm a little sore but I had fun.

December 27 posting: The NEIYRA Tune-up has been postponed til Sunday. But... the Canadian Nationals are going to be held tomorrow on Missisquois Bay, just across the Vermont line, the northern tip of Champlain. Phillipsburg is the launch site.
Ice report is "8 inches of black ice, sailed extensively the last few days." (Jeff Soderholm)
    I'd say take 87 Northway to 276, over the bridge at East Alberg to 89 north to Phillipsburg, where you turn left at the blinking yellow.
    Jon Hix checked Bantam this morning, he says it is not completely snowburied, and that the lake may be getting good sooner than expected.

December 26 posting: Merry Christmas! We got 24 inches at my house. Will the New England group find ice for their Tune-up event this weekend? Call the hotline at (508) 481-1011.

December 16 posting: Temperatures are going down this afternoon, and Saratoga and Round lakes are ready for a freeze. The lakes are flattened out sheets of dark slush at the moment, so there's hope for good sailing if it stays cold. Watch this space.

December12 posting: Thanks to last night's snowfall, we're socked in with 8 inches of wet snow, but it may have been our private little storm. North, south, and east of us got much less. In any case it looks like a snowcovered, mild and sloppy weekend in our area.

December11 posting: Jack Erikson reports good sailing on Otter Pond, and Jon Hix says sailing is good on Wentworth, both in NH. The Linc Davis regatta may be held this weekend in Maine. Call the number below for info.
    Locally, I think we have safe ice around, but it's early, and with the snow on it I would urge extreme caution. Saratoga skinned over only last Sunday, Round Lake may be good by now, but I haven't been on it. Long Pond Grafton could be good this weekend or the Watervleit Reservoir, but we're expecting more snow so the jury is still out.

December 6 posting: It looks to me like there is sailing in New England this weekend, you just have to drive to Maine. Call the Chickawaukee Iceboaters Club hotline at 207-596-0664.

December 5 posting: Stephen Wilson reports that Albany's own Watervleit Reservoir has skinned over and is building! Dan Guido says that Young's lake had 3 inches of black on Monday, so the Cooperstown guys expect to sail this weekend. Check NEIYRA ice reports Dan will probably post there.
    The next event on our local calendar is the NEIYRA Tuneup, scheduled for December 28th or 30th, somewhere in New England. Check the NEIYRA site for details and updates.
    The tuneup is a hands-on demo and Q & A discussion with experts for anyone who wants to learn more about DN iceboating. Safety equipment and right-of-way rules will be discussed. There will probably be some talk about racing strategy and maybe even some actual competition.

November 11 posting: The Westboro swapmeet was a great success. There must have been 60 people there, beautiful day, breezy enough to power the "blo-karts" around the parking lot. Here's some news, we have a new sailor in the area. I met Barry Maisel from Saratoga at the swap and watched him buy a DN. The more the merrier. All we need now is ice.

October 9th posting: The New England Ice Yacht Association will have its annual meeting and swapmeet at the usual place in Westboro Mass. Saturday, November 9nd. At 12:00 there will be a buffet lunch, the swapmeet is in the parking lot before, during, and after. I've found some great bargains there.
    Here's some info from the NEIYA site:
    Place: Wyndahm Hotel; 5400 Computer Dr, Westborough, MA 01581; tel. (508) 366-5511
    This is a great opportunity to get together with New England iceboating enthusiasts. New iceboaters can come and find out about our great iceboating organization. Renewing members can come back and meet old friends and see what's new this year.
    If you want to find out about iceboating - this is the place to be. There will be loads of iceboating gear and sailors who will gladly share their iceboating sailing and building experience with you. After the meeting there will be a swap meet in the parking lot where you might be able to pick up anything from some stainless steel hardware to a new boat or mast.
    Directions:Take route 495 to Route 9 West (exit 23B?), once on Route 9 Take the first exit. From there (based on memory) you take a right which causes you to double back (if coming from 495) kind of a U turn and you will be driving East along the highway (route 9) until you reach the hotel. The swap meet will take place in the rear and the Luncheon will be inside served normally at 12:00.
    Bring your gear to swap or just look around. Hope to see you there.

Sept 16, 2002 posting: Ice Boat Swap Meet Unplugged
Date: Saturday, Sept. 28
Time: 11:00 AM TO 3:00 PM?
Place: Composite Solutions, 41 Sharp Street, Weymouth MA. 781-335-4650
    Diretions: From Route 3 South to exit 14. At the bottom of the ramp take a right onto Hingham Street. Take 2nd Right onto Reservoir Park Drive and follow to end. At the stop sign take a right on to Weymouth Street. Go approximately 1/3 of a mile and Weymouth Street turns into Sharp Street. 41 Sharp Street is on the left.
    Directions: From Route 3 North to exit 14. At the bottom of the ramp left at lights. You are on Hingham Street. Go past Home Depot and follow the directions above.
    This a preseason get together, swap meet, bullshit session, See Jeff's new location, Meet Bernd Zieger World Class DN sailor. See the latest in composite building materials and techniques. Tech tips not for the average home builder. Northwind Iceboats will bring boats and parts for sale.
    Grill will be available for your cooking pleasure if you should so desire. This is a BYOB Sponsored Event. ( you all know about the old liability issue stuff / Jeff's landlord)
    Hope to see you there.

2002/2003 season

On Saturday, April 27th, The Hudson River Ice Yacht Club's spring member's dinner will feature iceboating action from 100 years ago. It's not a public dinner but you may be able to beg a seat. Go to the HRIYC site for details.

Monday March 18 -- I have to hand it to the Maine group, here's a note from Lloyd Roberts.
    "We are planning to take advantage of "the best ice in ten years". We hope to have report of sailability Wed night and some may leave for the arctic Thursday. Long range WX forecast for cold and windy Friday and Saturday. Moosehead is an adventure even if you don't get to sail, usually we get there a day late. Please indicate interest, we will try to rent a cabin/cabins on the shore for several people as we did the last time, so let me know ASAP if you are planning to go."

Tuesday March 12 -- It's over. The ice is out. I sailed Canadarago on Friday, Dan said that they sailed it on Saturday and pulled everything off on Sunday. Canadarago was the last ice in the area as far as I know. They say that Moosehead Lake in Maine is fabulous, and there's still sailing in Ottawa. Anybody want to go to a Moosehead Frolic? Maybe it's not over.
    It was a great season in some ways. Starting with the Jamboree in Saratoga where I met Jan Gougeon and Dick Price and Lloyd Roberts, and well... I could make a long list. It was great to meet many new -- and see many old iceboating pals. THANKS to Jon Hix and Dick Price for making the Jamboree happen.
    Locally it was a lousy season, we sailed Watervleit res and Grafton, but Saratoga never really came in so people who don't travel didn't get to sail at all -- see you on the ice next year. Anyone who wants to talk about iceboating, or how to get two DNs on the car without lifting, or where the good put-ins are, or building and tuning, or getting started in the sport, give me a call or post.
    Have a good summer (if I don't see you at Moosehead Lake this weekend), Ed Atkeson, edatkeson@earthlink.net 518-436-9498 days, 518-456-1913 at home.

Tuesday March 5 -- Back from vacation, we had a great time resting, touring around mid-coast Maine, and sailing on the fabulous ice of Chickawaukee Lake. Meanwhile the ice is out at Saratoga. Karl said he caught a glimpse of a boat on the lake a few weeks back, but no one I know sailed Saratoga this winter.
    On the other hand, this is probably the first season in decades that iceboats have been seen on Long Pond in Grafton, NY. It was also a first to see six DNs on the Watervleit reservoir right outside of Albany.
    The season is not over yet. Dan Guido reports that Canadarago is good, and maybe will hold for the weekend. Or call the NEIYA hotline. 508-481-1011

Thursday, Feb 14 -- Happy Valentines Day! I was up at Saratoga Lake today, looks good. Call Karl Avenarius for confirmation, 518-587-5316. The Saratoga Lake Ice Report is going on vacation for a couple of weeks, Cathy and I are going to Maine for some rest and relaxation, and maybe some sailing. See you when I get back.

Monday, Feb 11 -- A report from Alan Crawford: "The rain yesterday has made a mess of Saratoga Lake. We received 1+ inches of snow early this morning; snow was still falling when I left for work. Large areas of slush. There is still open water near Snake Hill / center of lake but closer to the East shore. If it gets cold, the lake may return to the conditions you report below."
    It is supposed to get cold tonight. Thanks Alan.

Saturday, February 9 -- We've got ice at Saratoga!! Good wind tomorrow, Saratoga is finally fit to sail. There's some open water over in the deeper area by Snake Hill, but the where we usually sail, from Manning's Cove clear to the south shore looks good. The fishermen I talked to were drilling eight inches of ice.
    Had a good time at Bantam yesterday. Ice was great, warm temps softened it up in the early afternoon though. it was great to see Dan Clapp and company with the bubble skeeters.
    Checked Long Pond Grafton this am. It is unsailable with an inch of dense snow.
    Saratoga is good. It looks like clear sailing all over the southern part of the lake. There is some snow, averaging a half inch over the area that I walked. There is a small amount of open water over by Snake Hill, and some higher tussocks of snow, but with cold temps tonight and a sunny day sublimating the snow, it should be good.

Wednesday, Feb 6 -- Cathy and I plan to go to Bantam on Friday if conditions hold.

February 3 -- Tom White called, so I met him at Long Pond Grafton -- beautiful ice, tons of breeze. Dan Guido reports that Canadarago is good out by Cooperstown. Jon Hix says that Bantam is good in CT. Jeff Soderholm reports that Quabog is good in MA. Call me if you want to safari.

February 2 -- Alan Crawford reports that Saratoga still has open water in the center. Scott and I sailed at Long Pond Grafton Lakes. Great ice, sailed the whole lake, no ridges or open areas.

February 1 -- Karl Avenarius reports that Saratoga looks good but says the surface is really a crust with snow underneath. Karl also sees several spooky dark spots out in the lake, so Saratoga remains unsailable.
    Long Pond at Grafton Lakes State Park is another story. It wet out completely yesterday and with the freeze last night, looks very good for sailing today. Follow the link for a map and instructions.

January 31 -- Snowed less than a couple of inches so far in Albany. Check out Long Pond in Grafton, eight inches of ice according to the fishermen. It's supposed to rain tomorrow and then freeze. Long Pond is a possible destination for Saturday, you never know.

January 25 -- The weekend sure looks good for air -- ice is another matter.
    I'm looking at a little lake 1500 ft up in the hills, Long Pond in Grafton, NY. It's safe, but the slush hasn't completely frozen leaving us with a lot of slush-filled shell today. Even if it hardens up tonight I would only rate it a 6 because of the bumps.
    According to the hotline, there may be ice on southern Champlain. They're supposed to be sailing now, checking it out and will update the NEIYA hotline tonight. 508-481-1011
    Ed Atkeson -- 518-436-9498 days, 518-456-1913 eves.

January 21 -- Alan Crawford reports, "Saratoga Lake is still looking pretty dismal. Still a big patch of open water around the Kaydeross extending mid-lake plus big areas in center directly out from the sailing club and towards Snake Hill." Thanks Alan.
    On Saturday, after last minute windmap checks and a call to Roger Livingston I drove to to Webster Lake in mid-MA near the CT border. Only two hours from Albany if you're not driving in a blizzard. There were a dozen boats, lots of good fellowship. No breeze when I first got there, but windcaster was right, it filled in nicely for a few hours and everyone got some good rides. Dan Johnsen reports activity on Sacandaga that day as well.The coming weekend? Who knows, there's new snow on everything in New England. Honk if you love ice.

January 18 -- The New England regatta has been postponed. Bantam is going to be a madhouse on Saturday, and Webster lake below Worcester MA is also good. Hope you get some good rides this weekend.

January 17 -- Karl Avenarius reports that Saratoga is unsailable with an inch of snow and a lot of open water over by Snake Hill and several holes around the launch site. Dan Guido reports that Canadarago got three inches of snow last night. Meanwhile Jon, Rich, and Fred have been sailing on Bantam all week.
    The New England Championship regatta is going to be held this weekend on one end of Champlain or the other, check the NEIYA site (button at right) for news.

January 14 -- Looked at Round and Saratoga this morning. Good news is they're all flattened out, bad news is there's a lot of open water showing. Tom White had the idea to try sailing Long Pond in Grafton. It's up in the hills a bit and is plenty safe, 8 inches thick, but it's NOT quite flattened out with patches of snow and crust. Time will tell.

January 11 -- Looks pretty grim for the weekend, everything is either socked in or melted out unless you want to drive to Maine. Call the hotlines, there may be some ice somewhere.

January 7 -- Got snow last night, 16 inches so far. Under the snow, Saratoga still is punky and gray. Before the snow Round Lake (3/4 mile diameter pond four miles south of Saratoga Lake on Rte 9) was good, beautiful ice, but no wind this weekend.
    Bantam Lake is solid but I'm pretty sure it got buried too. The snow missed southeast New England. Possible destination is Lake Pocotopaug below Hartford. Check the NEIYA ice reports (button at right).

January 4 -- A report from Alan Crawford: "I drove the length of Saratoga Lake on 9P this morning on my way to work. No ice except in Fish Creek (North end at the 9P bridge) and in Shadow Bay (North of Snake Hill - East side). Too much wind. Once the wind stops blowing (tonight?) my guess is that the lake will begin to freeze.
    I was by Round Lake yesterday morning. All frozen (but there was open water on Monday). Some guys at work have seen people ice skating on the part of the lake closest to Route 9."
    Thanks Alan! Looks like Round Lake is the destination for the weekend, but the lake has not been checked, take care.
    In the Cooperstown area, Dan Guido reports that they sailed Young's lake all weekend, and will be there again on Friday. Canadarago has 1.5 inches as of Wednesday. Thanks for the report Dan.

January 2, 2002 -- Happy New Year! We've been sailing on Watervleit Res. close to home here, beautiful ice but difficult access. Alan Crawford posted that Round Lake is skinned over, that's the next possibility locally.
    We have some reports of injuries on the new ice. Art Menard put his runner through some thin ice and was catapulted into the water, broke his hip on the tiller. Matt McCauley is another well known and careful sailor who has been to the hospital because of unexpectedly slippery ice. Take care.

December 29 -- The season is here. Reports are coming in from ME, NH, and VT. More interesting to us down here is Young's Lake over by Cooperstown. Danny Guido says they're sailing this weekend.

December 28 -- From Dan Guido, Cooperstown NY area:"Youngs Lake 3 miles east of Richfield Springs on Rt 20 has 3 inches of black. Just punched a hole at 4 pm. We will be there Fri 12 noon. I don't know if I should post on New England site with lake effect snow coming Saturday."

December 27 – There is no ice at Saratoga Lake. Best thing I've heard for this weekend is Roger Livingston's report that there's a chance for sailing on Monomonack Lake on the Mass/NH border.
    The NEIYA Tune up Clinic is going to be Sunday 12/30/01 if ice can be found. If Sunday doesn't work plan on coming out on New Year's day 1/1/02.

December 21 -- no ice, no winter in sight! There is no ice yet in New England or the Montreal area. It hasn't been cold and this week is not helping. Last year we sailed Saratoga on the 26 of December. While you're waiting for the lakes to freeze check out Lloyd Robert's notes on the Jamboree. A lot of good information.

November 15, 2001 -- The Iceboat Jamboree was a huge success. I'm writing up my notes, follow the link if you're curious.

Ted Clements has a boat for sale in Schenectady. 518-374-1097
 >>> Ed, my name is Ted Clements and we previously sailed once on Lake George several years ago. I have had my ice boat hung in the garage since then and really have too many toys. Please post it on your site. Its been sailed once (LG), and is a Norton kit assembled by Weeks Yacht in Patchogue, LI, in 1998. I ask $2,000. Its absolutely worth the price, its virtually new. Aluminum spars and sta-master. Hull immaculate. Full set of covers from Weeks. If nobody bites, keep me in mind for a sail.
    Barry in Saratoga has a DN for sale. "The boat is molded plywood-a little heavy. Wooden mast, runners crosspiece, sail w/alum boom. It would be a good starter. It needs a little tuning/sharpening but nothing is broken/missing. Also w/ ice claws and Northline weighted rescue rope. $1150 OBO. Also listed on craigslist. Pictures available, gymrat414@hotmail.com

November 1, 2001, The season begins with the NEIYA banquet and swapmeet this weekend in Westborough Mass Saturday November 3, at the Windham Westborough at the intersection of Rt. 495 and Rt. 9, one exit north of the Mass Pike. Then next weekend is the Iceboat jamboree at Saratoga Spa State Park, Gideon Putnam Hotel. See the above link for details.

The new NEIYA hotline number is 508-481-1011. The new number will handle four incoming calls at once and will allow reports from diferent individual clubs from the whole area. The new Commodore of the New England group, Gregory Cornelius, tells me that he would like to include Saratoga in the New England Ice Yacht Assn's sailing area. So if we have good conditions, there may be some more activity on our lake.

Get your gear right, maybe see you on the ice next month. Check back here for news of the NEIYA tune-up day, and what happened at the jamboree.

I learned from checking the IDNIYRA forum on the web about stoning runners. Seems Ron Sherry does it this way, every day he sails. It doesn’t take any special machines, just five little machinist’s stones and some patience. You clamp your runner in a vise, and holding the stones in your fingers, you grind first one side then the other, stroking back and forth. Hold the stone flat against the surface and work from the coarsest grit to the finest. The stones are available from Ron Sherry, Composite Concepts, 810-790-5557 for about $25. Also good is a Michigan product called Bori-Lube, a non oil honing solution.

Saratoga County Airport Automated Weather Observations 518-884-9286
NEIYA Iceline 508-481-1011 New Eng & NY
NSIB&YC Iceline 732-747-5665 New Jersey
Lake Champlain ISC 802-985-1469 Vermont
If you have web access, the New England site has the best ice reports from around the area. The people who post ice reports often post their telephone numbers so you can call them to find out if things have changed. They’re sailing in the northern Champlain bays and some lakes in New Hampshire. Our contact for Saratoga conditions is Karl Avenarius, 587-5316. At Canadarago, call Dan Guido, 315-866-6153.

Have a happy holiday everyone. Get your gear right and always sail safe. Call me if you’re going sailing, and let me know if anyone you know would be interested in getting this newsletter. 518-436-9498 is my daytime number, 518-456-1913 in the evenings. See you on the ice.
—Ed Atkeson, dn5105 edatkeson@earthlink.net


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