Contact 4LIYC

Welcome to, the web site of the Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club. We are one of the most active ice boat clubs in North America and have been building and racing ice boats for over 100 years.

4LIYC on Facebook



Dec 5-7, 2014

Dec 13-14, 2014
DN Forum

Jan 3-4, 2015
DN Forum

Jan 9-11, 2015

(DNs, Renegades, Skeeters, Stern Steerers)
Jan 16-18, 2015

Jan 24-31, 2015
Primary Site: East, Mountain, & Canada
DN Forum


Stern Steerers

March 1-6, 2015
DN Europe


Lake Baikal, Siberia, Russia


DN Western Challenge
December 6-8, 2013
Completed. Won by US 44 Ron Sherry in Gold, US 5486 Dave Elsmo Silver.

2013 DN Central Regionals
Dec 28-29, 2013
Completed. Won by US 4 Griffin Sherry in Gold, US 4974 Stan Jones in Silver.

DN North American Championship
January 19-25, 2014
Gold won by Ron Sherry US44. Silver won by Hal Bowman US1277.

DN Gold Cup & European Championship
Sailed March 1-8, 2014
in Happsalu, Estonia
Gold fleet won by
Karol Jablonski P36

(Stern Steerers, DNs, Renegades, & Skeeters)
Sailed March 14-16
Photos and results

Sailed March 15-16

DN Central Regionals
Sailed March 15-16
Won by Julie Richards DN 4868

Stern Steerers
Sailed March 22-23 for Green Lake


Lake Access Permits

A year-round permit required for designated launch sites in the City of Madison and Dane County Parks.

Locations include:

Warner Park Mendota County Park

Tonyawatha Tr. Park
Olin Park

Goodland Park

Lake Access Permit Brochure in pdf

Purchase Lake Access Permit Online

Web Cams

Canyon Ferry, Montana

Clear Lake, Iowa

Geneva Lake,
Williams Bay, WI

Geneva Lake, Gordy's Boat Sales, Fontana, WI
Look for webcam link upper right corner

Geneva Lake, Eleven Gables Inn, Lake Geneva, WI

Geneva Lake, downtown looking into the bay.

Lake Mendota,
Madison, WI
(UW Soils)

Lake Mendota,
Madison, WI
from somewhere on UW Campus

Lake Mendota,
Madison, WI UW AOSS North Facing Camera

Lake Mendota at the UW Union

Lake Mendota,
Madison, WI 3 UW AOSS Rooftop Cameras

Mallets Bay,
Lake Champlain, VT

Maumee Bay, Toledo, OH

Lake Minnetonka, Minnesota

Westport, NY
Lake Champlain

Great Lakes MODIS
Not a webcam but daily views of the Midwest from space

Click for Madison, Wisconsin Forecast


Link to map

100% SAFE.

Our ice reports are geared towards 4LIYC members who race ice boats with the club. All others including recreational ice boaters, kite boarders, cross country skiers, and ice fishermen should not rely on these ice reports. We have safety equipment.
Do you?



November 6

November 20
for Dec 4

December 4
Elect Fleet Captains. Vote on ISA & NIYA Agenda Items

December 18

SKIP January 1

January 15
Honor Roll Nominations

January 29
Deadline for
By-Law or Racing Rules Amendment Submission

February 12

February 26
Business Meeting

March 12

March 26

Glass Nickel Pizza
2916 Atwood Ave
Madison, WI
Time: 6:30 PM alternate Weds.

We meet downstairs and all are welcome.

4LIYC By Laws & Racing Rules

By-Laws & Racing Rules

In pdf

Right of Way Rules Graphic

(Download Adobe Acrobat free.)

4LIYC Club Race Results & Points












National Ice Boat Authority

Constitution and Rules

August 19, 2014

Skeeter Ice Boat Club Swap Meet Slated for Nov 2!

Skeeter Ice Boat Club 29th Annual Swap Meet Sunday, November 2, 2014
9:00 to noon - followed by a raffle
Lucke's Cantina
220 N. Elkhorn Rd. (WI Hwy 67), Williams Bay, WI.
For more info, email
Download flyer
This is the day to swap, buy, and sell new and used iceboats and equipment. There is no charge for participating.

Boat builders & hardware manufacturers will display new products. Breakfast and/or lunch will be available at Lucke's.
Display area: Items for sale can be set up on the black top parking area at Lucke's. Please do not park your cars in the display area.
Parking: Please do not park or set up your displays adjacent to neighboring businesses. A short distance to the north there is a municipal parking lot located at the intersection of Elkhorn Rd. and Stark St. (on the north side of Stark St., opposite Burrough's Floor Coverings).

August 11, 2014

And Now For Something Completely Different

Meet the Kaira foldable ice boat on Behance, a website that showcases and discovers creative work.

August 7, 2014

Our Summer Vacations V2

Evolution-Survival of the Fastest
Via another ice boater who sailed the Bayview to Mac and Chicago to Mac race in July, Skeeter & DN sailor Steve Orlebeke: "Kudos to Rick and the crew of Denali, they sailed great but hey, give the Evolution some love! We placed 2nd in class and second overall in the Bayview Mac. Then the EVO went on to win section 1 in the Chicago Mac and finished 8th overall (beating ALL of the turbo division boats too). We have been awarded the Clark-DeRoy trophy for the best combined corrected time score for both races as well."

August 6, 2014

Our Summer Vacations

The hat fits
From the Department of Catching Up:
The big news in ice boating circles is that Rick Hennig and crew on Denali won the Turbo division of the Chicago to Mackinac race!

July 29, 2014

Always Famous

Peter rolls up his Skeeter sail at the 2005 ISA on Geneva Lake.
Photo by David Travis

Congratulations to Olaf and Peter Harken on their induction into the National Sailing Hall of Fame (NSHOF) today. From Peter's NSOF biograpy: "While he was struggling with the math involved with engineering at University of Wisconsin at Madison, Peter Harken had a part part-time job at Gilson Medical Electronics. The rule at Gilson was designers had to build their own prototypes, so as a draftsman, Harken had gotten friendly with the machine shop. One night, some plastic ball bearings he had found to solve a problem in a refrigerated environment rolled off the bench onto the floor. “I was amazed at how high they bounced,” he recalls. “The less mass, the further things accelerate – that’s what pulleys do on a boat, stop and start all the time.” The standard blocks at the time were brass, sometimes with brass ball bearings that were heavy and sluggish. Harken had upgraded to stainless bearings for the blocks he had been making for his E-Scow and ice boat. They were were soon replaced by blocks with lighter, more lively plastic bearings, and that day yachting hardware took a giant leap forward. Harken had learned engineering wasn’t all math: 'Sometimes it’s just bloody common sense.'" Continue reading.
Read Nite skipper Olaf's biography here.
Olaf Harken stops by to visit with Bill Mattison at the 2011 Northwest Regatta on Lake Mendota.

July 24, 2014

Throw Back Thursday:
History Repeats Edition

Throwing it back to the 1950s
...and then throwing it forward to 2001
Oshkosh stern steerer skipper Marv Luck emailed a couple of shots of the A class stern steerer, Fritz, when she tipped over back in the 1950s. The pictures looked familiar because the same thing happened in 2001 on Geneva Lake. I don't know much about what happened that day in the 1950s but Don Sanford wrote up an account in 2001, "Righting the Fritz", that you can read here.

July 17, 2014

Throw Back Thursday UPDATE:
Oshkosh 1934-Skippers Identified

Oshkosh stern-steerer skipper Marv Luck shared a newspaper clipping that lists the identities of the skippers, the most famous being John Buckstaff. Stay tuned for another one of Marv's old photos that I'll post for next week's TBT.
Click on the photo for a closer look.
When stern-steerers ruled the ice (they still do-there's nothing bigger!). Click on the photo for a higher res look at these Oshkosh sailors on Lake Winnebago. I don't recall who gave me this. If anyone looks familiar, drop me a line.

July 16, 2014

Ice Boaters Sail Chicago to Mackinac

Denali, straight out of the Cabbage Patch
Another summer milestone, the Chicago to Mackinac race, is approaching which also means we are getting closer to ice time. Counting from today, there are only 142 days until the DN Western Challenge fun regatta in Minnesota. Meanwhile, the ice boaters are in summer mode as they race from Chicago to Mackinac Island this weekend. Let me know if you are sailing it so that your name can be added.
Link to race tracking.

Matt Critchley

Denali (Nelson Marek 68)
Owned by stern-steerer skipper Rick Hennig, crewed by DNer Dave Elsmo, stern-steerer sailor Todd Knop, and DNer Eric Tobias.

Equation (STP Farr 65)
Crewed by Michigan DNers Ron Sherry (at the helm), Michael Rehe, and Chris Clark.

Evolution (Santa Cruz 70)
DNer Pete Orlebeke, Opti sailor Cole Orlebeke, DN & Skeeter sailor Steve Orlebeke

Fast Tango
(North American 40)
DNer Griffin Sherry

Andy Gratton
Lou Lonnecke

Touch of Grey
Larry Schell
Gary Allie
Terry Adams

UPDATE: SIBC's Jane Pegel emails with news of some other accomplishments by ice boaters on the softwater.
"[4LIYC Renegader] Greg Simon’s two kids are having an outstanding summer racing their Optimists. His daughter placed 2nd overall here at Geneva, Fritz was 10th. They then went to the Great Lakes champ at Sheboygan and placed well there. Greg mentioned something about the kids getting into ice opti racing. That would surely give a boost to ice optis. You may recall that Dave Kickhafer’s son raced his ice opti at Kegonsa in 2013. The boy is also doing well in a soft water Opti.
J.D. placed 3rd in the A Scow Nationals at Minnetonka last month and won one race.
Mark Christensen ["the Doctor"] won the ILYA class MC Invitational held at Okoboji last weekend. Several DN sailors were aboard E Scows racing the ILYA Invitational here [on Geneva Lake] last weekend."

July 7, 2014

Updated: Throw Back Thursday:
Flying High in 1973

UPDATE: Here's the story behind this photo. A couple of guys got into trouble when they sailed their stern-steerer (formerly owned by Bill Hansen) into open water in Lake Monona near the Yahara River outlet, an area where no experienced ice sailor would have dared to sail and proving the point once again that the entire lake is never safe. One of the sailors was part of the helicopter crew that pulled the boat out of the drink. Read the story here.
Tip of the helmet: Don Sanfo
I have no explanation for this slide taken by Mike Hunt other than it's from January 1973. That's the Madison police watching a stern steerer fly away over Lake Mendota.

June 19, 2014

Speaking of Buddy...

Photo by Chris Johns
Gloria and Buddy Melges at the 2007 Northwest

Slide from the Carl Bernard Collection
Gloria and Buddy on the runner plank of the Skeeter, Mickey Finn, Bill Perrigo with his son Will, sometime in the 1950s. Buddy's father, Harry, won the Skeeter class in Mickey Finn in 1936, the first time the Skeeters competed in the Northwest. Buddy went on to win the Northwest Skeeter title 9 times.

Sailing legend Buddy Melges reflects on Wisconsin roots

By Ben Stanley
Lake Geneva News

"The man has enyclopedic knowledge of sailing. But it goes deeper than that. He’s not spewing empty technical jargon, and he didn’t learn it from a book. He has his own language to describe the complex and abstract geometry of sailing. Angles, boat mechanics, design and physics. He’s condensing a Bachelor of Science degree into a 10 minute conversation before lunch. He’s brimming with enthusiasm for a hobby he’s had since five years before the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor." Continue reading.

Throw Back Thursday:
Buddy Melges @ 2007 Northwest

Buddy Melges crosses the finish line first at the 2007 NIYA
Photo by Chris Johns

It was only seven years ago when the Northwest Regatta was sailed on Green Bay in Menominee, Michigan and Buddy Melges took top honors in the Skeeter class. Here's the 2007 Northwest Regatta page with results and photos.

June 16, 2014

Rage On

Take a look at this concept video from a group of university students at the Department of Engineering and Design at Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
It's not difficult to imagine this with blades on ice.

On Our Wisconsin

Mike Peters saw this photo in Our Wisconsin, a new magazine dedicated to well, stuff that happens here. This is a shot by Rob Resnick from the 2011 Renegade Championship sailed on Lake Mendota. There's Archie Call R231, Jim Nordhaus R400, and Don Anderson R420.

June 12, 2014

Throw Back Thursday:
Charles Lindbergh Learned About Speed on Lake Mendota's Ice

Charles Lindbergh with his motorized ice boat on Lake Mendota in 1921

Aviator Charles Lindbergh, who made history by being the first to fly solo across the Atlantic in 1927, lived in Madison in 1921 and briefly attended the University of Wisconsin. According to this Milwaukee Journal article from May 17, 1927 Lindbergh built his first air propelled vehicle, "an ice boat run by a motor cycle engine geared to an airplane propeller. In it, Lindbergh sailed over frozen Lake Mendota in 1921. The craft was wrecked in a collision of one of "Capt." William Bernard's iceboats, but damages were collected from the students who skippered Bernard's boats."
There's another important Lindbergh connection with ice boating. He was a cousin of Joe Lodge (Lindbergh's mother was a Lodge), who along with Archie Arrol and Norman Jarrait, designed the DN ice boat.
I would guess that Lindbergh was well familiar with ice boating before he came here in 1921. He was a misfit on campus but perhaps felt more at ease on Lake Mendota with the ice boaters.

6-16: UPDATE: The Milwaukee Journal story doesn't tell the whole story of the day Lindbergh's motorized ice boat tangled with a Bernard stern steerer.

Continue reading.

From the book, "Lindbergh's Badger Days" by Anne Vandenburgh: "That winter, Duley and Plummer started a project in Dudley's basement to convert an iceboat from wind to mechanical power. Soon, however, Plummer's newly discovered fascination with dating caused him to lose interest. Lindbergh stepped in to help finish the boat, using the engine from his motorcycle and a discarded airplane propeller. Lindbergh often spent entire days working on the iceboat rather than going to class. Dudley's mother would give him lunch.

When they were ready to test the boat, Lindbergh had Reynold's Transfer haul it to Lake Mendota. There he tied it to a tree and went home. Sometime that night, it was rammed by another iceboat. When Lindbergh went to get the boat the next morning, he found it smeared with yellow paint. Lindbergh decided to look for a yellow iceboat with a damaged prow.

Again, a description by Delos Dudley:
Late in the day, he reached the docks of the Bernard Boat Livery, this outfit catered to the University students. In the small group of rental iceboats, he quickly spotted one painted bright yellow, and that boat had a chunk of wood missing from the prow. Lindbergh showed the damage to Mr. Bernard, who had been unaware of the damage done to the front end of his boat. He readily gave Lindbergh his record books, which showed the boat had been rented to a student living at one of the fraternities on Langdon Street. Lindbergh confronted the young man the next day, and without argument, the fellow made restitution to Lindbergh and Bernard.
When the iceboat project ended, the engine was restored to Lindbergh's motorcycle.

Hide this content.

June 5, 2014

Throw Back Thursday: Summer Time is Shop Time

Photos by Bob Clements-Dave Rosten left, Bill Mattison, right
Quite a few 4LIYC Skeeters came out of the basement shops of Bill Mattison and Dave Rosten in the 1960s and early 1970s.

Bill Mattison

Dave Rosten and Bill look over a planer in Bill's garage in Monona.
Getting it done.

May 29, 2014

Double TBT: The Fritz & the Skyline

2004 Northwest with Fred Stritt: Photo Credit: David Travis
Circa 1950 from the Carl Bernard Collection
It's a two for one Throw Back Thursday here at featuring the A class stern steerer, Fritz, built in 1934 by Frank Teztlaff and originally sailed by the 4LIYC's Carl Bernard. With Carl at the tiller, the Fritz won the Northwest regatta in 1934, 1936, 1937, 1947, 1948. In 1936, Fritz, aced three major regattas- the Hearst, Stuart, and Northwest. The Fritz came by her red color after surviving an arsonist's fire. Fred Stritt sailed Fritz in the 2004 Northwest on Lake Monona. For a description of materials, cost of materials, and labor to build the Fritz, click here.

May 22, 2014

The Ultimate Throw Back Thursday

You can't get any more "thrown back" than the 17th century and this week's TBT features Dutch painter, Hendrick Avercamp, "master of the ice scene", famous for his portrayal of winter life in the Netherlands. The Dutch are the "grandfathers" of ice boating because they were the first on record to convert their softwater boats to the ice. Several of Avercamps works portray the beautiful Dutch style ice boats which they still sail today.

May 17, 2014

Performance Sailing Products

Long time 4LIYC DNer, Geoff Sobering, has put out the "Now Open" sign in the form of a website for his new business, Performance Sailing Products, where you can buy "cool parts for fast sailboats, iceboats, and landsailers".

May 16, 2014

What is Six

Bill Bucholz of the Chickawaukee Ice Boat Club in Maine asks and answers the question about how many times ice boats have been featured on the cover of Wooden Boat Magazine along with the history of each instance. Read about it here.

May 15, 2014

Throw Back Thursday: Bandwagon Jumped

On Facebook, "Throw Back Thursday" is the day when people post old photos. In that spirit, I'll will post ice boating photos from the archives every Thursday. Above is Mr. Ice Boat, Elmer Millenbach, originator of the Renegade and many other Skeeter innovations, loading Renegade III on his car.

May 9, 2014

Erik Extends the Season

When he's not at the helm of the A Stern Steerer, Michigander, Erik Sawyer sails the Great Lakes at his day job where today, he's "ice boating" on Lake Superior. Take a look at this satellite shot from Sunday for another view of Lake Superior's ice.

May 7, 2014

A Look Back:1956 Northwest Regatta

Here's another vintage ice boat newsreel from British Pathé, the 1956 Northwest Regatta sailed on Geneva Lake.
Read about the regatta in this Oshkosh Daily Northwestern newspaper report from January 23, 1956.
Since we're on the subject of the Northwest, this is a good opportunity to note that there's a new webpage dedicated to the regatta with up to date By Laws, Sailing Instructions, Records of Regatta Winners, and Northwest Archives. Many thanks to SIBC's Steve Schalk for helping to organize the page.

May 6, 2014

A Season Off and On the Ice

Iceboat documentary FINAL CUT from Anthony Van Witsen on Vimeo.

May 4, 2014

4LIYC Awards Party

Greg Simon is officially inducted into the 4LIYC Honor Roll
We had a nice turn out at the 4LIYC Awards party last night considering that in mid March, we didn't even know if we'd have a season. Luckily we were able to spend two weekends on Lake Monona for our club championships. Thanks to everyone who helped organize the banquet and attended. I'll post all the banquet photos soon.
DN Trophies: Frankie Hearn Best DN Regatta Finish, Junior Championship, and Junior Service Award, Dawn Hearn, and Daniel Hearn,
Saturday Series, Championship first place
Renegade Class: George Gerhardt third place, Tim McCormick second place and William McCormick race winner, Doug Kolner, Saturday series first place and overall first place.

April 22, 2014

Spring Runner Tracks Magazine

The season end edition of the DN Association's newsletter, Runner Tracks, is online. Great articles and photos about everything in the DN universe. See it all here.

April 20, 2014

Iceboats in British Newsreel Archives

The U.K. newsreel company British Pathé, has uploaded its entire 100-year collection of historic films in high resolution to YouTube. The first film that caught my eye was this footage shot on Fox Lake in Illinois. 42 Skeeters lined up for the ISA championship that year which was won by Elmer Millenbach. ISA records indicate Elmer first won the ISA in Renegade II in 1948. If you'd like to see more, click on these search results of ice yachting and ice sailing.

April 16, 2014

New Western Region DN Commodore Seen Scouting for Ice in MN

Not really, but Mike Miller was out getting a close look at the ice before it could take out his dock (on Lake Minnetonka). Winter's not done yet in the Midwest. From his Facebook page, "When the wind turned to East at 15-20, I had to start cutting up 6-8 inches of moving ice or our permanent docks would have been toast! Thank you Gary Eklof for having your boat ready to go! After 4 hours, it is packed in tight, the wind has lessened, and we are home free for a few days while it switches to the North and NW."

April 9, 2014

Spring Season Just About Finished

Photo from Godie DN G4 Facebook page
Ice Optimist sailors and DN sailors on Lake Baikal She's warming up -but maybe the Minnesota sailors will come through with one last effort. The 2014 Baikal Cup was successfully sailed in Russia and ended yesterday so there's still some ice in Siberia.

Desert Streams

Arrived home Sunday night from the 2014 NABSA Blokart North American Championships held on the playa near Primm, Nevada. Congratulations to Scott Young for his win in the Performance fleet. See one of Scott's videos from the last day of racing below. Our own 4LIYC ice boaters did well in the regatta. Kyle Metzloff battled Scott Young every race and placed second in the Performance fleet. 4LIYC Renegade and DN sailor, Jim Nordhaus won the Production Class. Geoff Sobering and Wayne Schmeidlen also did well in their divisions. Continue reading.

April 7, 2014

Rich Crucet

Photo: David Frost Detail from a "family portrait" from the 2014 DN North Americans. From left, Hal Bowman, Rich Crucet, Kent Baker, and Mark Christensen.
The ice boating community is mourning the loss of Long Island sailor, Rich Crucet, who passed away unexpectedly last Friday night.
Via Jordan Glaser, "Rich Crucet was Commodore of the Lake Ronkonkoma Ice Yacht Club. He was a great guy who would always find some ice during the week so that we could sneak out and sail DNs. He was a great boat builder and ran a workshop for the Long Island sailors on Wednesday night. He loaned out one of his "hot" DNs to me on a regular basis so that both my son Jake & I could participate in various regattas, such as the Long Island Championships on Mecox Bay, LI and the Lloyd Young Regatta on Bantam Lake, CT. Rich's trailer was always open to us all for his famous "blowtorch hot dogs." His death is a monstrous loss for the Long Island ice boating scene. I'm glad that he did get to break his record and sail 28 times this past season. I'm sure that he will find sailable ice in heaven."
Read Paul Goodwin's tribute here.
New England Ice Yacht Association post here.

April 1, 2014

4LIYC Racing Scores Updated

See them here.

WI Stern Steerers Regatta Scores

Photo: Tim Bryden
Results from the 2014 WSSA Championship regatta posted here.

March 30, 2014

Skyline Sailing

Where ever I travel, ice boaters tell me that sailing in Madison is high on their list. There isn't a more impressive urban setting for an ice boat race course. John Winegarden was kind enough to share his photos from the weekend sailing on Lake Monona.

Meanwhile, In the Desert

The Blokart North American Championship began on Sunday. There are two divisions with different weight classes in each division. We waited for the wind to settle in and dropped the flag around 2 PM and scored 8 races. Just like on Lake Monona last Sunday, there were shifts and holes but some nice gusts kept the fleets rolling. Loretta and I are having a great time. Getting ready to get to the skippers meeting at 9 AM.

March 29, 2014

Spring Sailing Continues

The DNs and Renegades were able to race on Lake Monona on Saturday on what looks to be pretty decent ice. Tim Stanton was there and took some more excellent photos from his RC helicopter.

March 28, 2014

4LIYC Racing Called ON for
March 29-30

The ISA on Green Lake was cancelled today before it began because of water on the ice, drain holes, and cracks. The Renegades looked at Lake Monona and have determined that the landing at Tonyawatha is good enough for club racing. Please do not drive on the ice, roll trailers on. Racing begins at 10 AM on Saturday.

Update from Ivanpah

The Blokart sailors registered for their North American championship today while the NALSA group up the street called it a regatta and packed up for home. Was a pleasure to finally meet Montana ice boater and land sailor John Eisenlohr in person and see his beautifully crafted boat (what I would call a Skeeter but NALSA's classes are different than ice sailing). Loretta and I had fun sharing notes about another mutual friend, British ice and land sailor Gareth Rowland, with John. The Blokart folks are cooking up turkey dinner tonight and we are headed back to Blokart camp soon. We are so enjoying the hospitality and camaraderie of the Blokart community.

March 26, 2014

"Once In a Lifetime"

Wait....This is not my beautiful ice
I'm on a plane bound for Las Vegas early this morning meeting up with IDNIYRA scorer, Detroit Ice Yacht Club member Loretta Rehe where we'll be turning in our ice picks and creepers for sunblock and dust masks. We are helping out at the Blokart North American regatta in Ivanpah, Nevada. The North American Land Sailing Association championships are also being held this week across the highway. We are looking forward to seeing our ice boating friends in this strange habitat. I expect to hear the final decision from Paul Krueger on the ISA Skeeter regatta as soon as the cellphone can be turned on in the plane on the Vegas runway. The site will be updated with all the information you'll need sometime around 1 PM CST.
I'll post a few pictures from the Blokart regatta while I'm there.

March 25, 2014

DN Western Regionals Called On

Photo: Jeff Smith
Via DN Western Regional Commodore Julie Jankowski, "The possibility of a Western Regional Regatta still exists. We have promising sites in Wisconsin yet...but will wait until Thursday PM for final decision on this weekend." More information will be posted on the DN Forum.


Here's a DN Worlds photo gallery with 714 pictures from Marleen Nurm of Estonia.

March 24, 2014

WI Stern Steerers Regatta

Rosemary Knows
The Wisconsin Stern Steerers Association held their annual championship on Green Lake in Wisconsin over the weekend. 4LIYC Skeeter sailors Ken Whitehorse and Paul Krueger also made an appearance. Green Lake IYC member was there to photograph the action and has uploaded his photos here.

Bald Eagle Phantom

Via Bald Eagle Lake IYC, Pat Heppert, ": After many, many years of not being sailed, the Phantom is sailing once again. She is a Johnson class A stern steerer, lovingly restored and cared for by John Stasieluk and Harry Allen. It has been set up on Bald Eagle Lake since December, but conditions have not been good until Friday. The boat managed to charge its way through the remaining hard packed snow and extremely rough ice fairly well, but left us with some bruises from the rough ride. There is still some obvious tuning and tiller time necessary, but a successful day nonetheless!"

March 23, 2014

Sunday's 4LIYC Sailing

Photo: Nick Burger
With a low temperture last night of 12F, the ice was harder and the day showed a lot of promise. Unfortunately, there was much less wind than Saturday. Winds were extremely shifty all day with areas of the lake that had no wind at all.
Continue reading.

March 22, 2014


Photo Credit: Tim Stanton
Great Renegade and DN racing on Lake Monona against the beautiful skyline of Madison, Wisconsin. Hard ice with 10-15 mph winds. See you there tomorrow when the flag drops at 10 AM.

It's Simon in the 4th race.


March 21, 2014

Catching Up: Mendota Photo Gallery

Photo Credit: Mark Gillespie
Photographer Mark Gillespie was out on Lake Mendota last weekend. Check out the gallery here.

Catching Up: Long Island Championships

On March 3, Mike Acebo sent along photos and a note about the Long Island Championships. "Seems most areas snowed out so strange as it seems the Long Island folks have been sailing. We even got in the Long Island Championships over the weekend." Congratulations to George Nyssen in the J14s and to Rich Crucet in the DN Class for winning their classes.

March 20, 2014

Nate Nats

Nice write up on Scuttlebutt about last weekend's Nite Nationals. Congratulations Scott Brown for taking the first place trophy home.

NIYA Awards

Photo by Jeff Russell
Erik Sawyer, A Stern Steerer Class, 1st place.

See the photo gallery here.

Have You Seen Me?

Photo: Jeff Russell
The trophy, that is. Mike Peters is looking for the Northwest C Stern Steerer keeper trophy which was mistakenly taken off the trailer at the awards presentation on Sunday. Contact me if you have it. I will post Jeff Russell's photo gallery from the awards this afternoon.

Catching Up: Montana

Received these photos from Patrick Dillon towards the end of February while at the DN Worlds. They were shut down because of snow at the time but were looking forward to sailing in March. " Montana boating on Meadow Lake near Ennis with Lone Peak in the back ground, home of Big Sky Ski Resort."

Catching Up:Monotype Regatta

With the ISA and DN Western Region regattas under postponment, I finally have an opportunity to catch up on the inbox. Chickawaukee, Maine's Ice Yacht Club skipper Bill Bucholz was given a Monotype XV and a crewman with which to compete in the Baltic Cup, European Champs and the Worlds in northern Sweden. Bill, as you may recall, recently build the first Monotype here in North America which made the cover of Wooden Boat Magazine. Bill wrote about his experiences in Sweden on the Chickawaukee IYC website. Read his stories here.

March 18, 2014

Jeff Smith's Northwest Photos

Photo by Jeff Smith
Renegade sailors Dan Bierman 520 and George Gerhardt 123 synchronizing their hikes.

North Shewsbury Ice Yacht Club sailor and photographer Jeff Smith has uploaded his photos from the weekend including some nice social pictures from the banquet. Check them out here. For download info, people can contact him at

Sneakin' Up

Tim Stanton borrowed Dan Schultz's Renegade on Saturday and took it out for a spin on Lake Monona.

How Thick?

UW researcher: Ice on Madison lakes 'the thickest I've ever seen'
....The drill kept going and going until finally reaching water underneath the ice.....Bier's ballpark guess on the thawing of the lakes, given the current ice depth and normal spring weather conditions, is between April 7 and April 15". Continue reading.

Smoke on the Water

Green Lake Ice Yacht Club member Tim Bryden's Northwest photos are posted on Google+. Take a look here. These two are Erik Sawyer's beautiful A class stern steerer, Michigander, during a spin in Friday's breeze.

March 17, 2014

NIYA Skeeter Weather Rounding

Tim Bryden's Pictures from the Northwest

Green Lake Ice Yacht Club member, Tim Bryden, captured some great moments from the Northwest regatta. Tim says this one of B Skeeter second place Mark Hancik flying a runner in his Yankee is his favorite from the regatta. I'll get all of Tim's photos posted soon.

Julie Richards Wins DN Centrals

Photo by John Russell and stolen borrowed from his FB page
Congratulations to DNer Julie Richards for taking first place in the DN Centrals sailed on Traverse Bay this weekend.

Geoff on Lake Mendota

Wondering what Mendota ice conditions are like? Geoff Sobering attached a GoPro to his DN on Sunday. Check it out.

March 16, 2014

Northwest Completed

Congratulations to all who made the effort to compete in the 101st Northwest Ice Yacht Association regatta on Green Lake. A HUGE thank you to the Green Lake Ice Yacht Club for hosting. It takes a lot of volunteers to make it look so easy. Congratulations to A Stern Steerer winner Erik Sawyer, B Stern Steerer winner Marv Luck, C Stern Steerer winner Mike Peters, D Stern Steerer winner John Davis, E Skeeter winner Jay Yaeso, B Skeeter winner Steve Schalk, and DN winner Peter Orlebeke. A special shout out to the 4LIYC team of Renegaders who placed well at the regatta including winning Renegader Greg Simon, Don Anderson second place, and Doug Kolner third. Provisional results here. People are sending in some nice photos and I will post them up tomorrow. Photo: Tim Brydan

March 13, 2014

Henry Bosset's Hudson River Photos

The Slipper designed by LF Herreschoff
Via Jane Pegel: Henry Bossett drove to the Hudson River the last two weekends to photograph the stern steerers. "A lot of history...including a L.F.Herreschoff design named "Slipper" that had many innovative feature's as one would expect." See the whole set here.

DN Centrals Called ON

The ice sailing regatta season is in full swing. If you are in the Michigan/Ohio area or beyond, the DN Central Regional Championship has been called on for this weekend at Traverse City, Michigan. More information here.

Last Update: Wednesday, Mar. 12 12:30 pm

Northwest called ON for Green Lake

2014 DN Worlds, Happsalu, Estonia
UPDATE: The Northwest Regatta has been called on for Green Lake in Green Lake Wisconsin for March 14-16. NIYA RC Chair Steve Schalk set up his B boat and reports the ice is good. There are three ramps to drive on and all are in good condition.
Pre register for the regatta on the Northwest Regatta page.
Arrived back in Madison last night after visiting 8 countries in Europe while traveling to and from the 2014 DN World Championship. Many thanks to Geoff Sobering for keeping the website updated. Final confirmation for the Northwest will come today after ice checkers look it over.
On a local sailing note, quite a few of the 4LIYC DN fleet who can't make the NIYA are hoping for good ice conditions on Madison area lakes for some stay at home racing if the Northwest is called on.

Now or Never: Ice Sailing on the Hudson

March 10, 2014

Video Previews

Tony Van Witsen is working on a video about iceboating at the 4-Lakes Club. He's posted a couple of "works in progress" segments:

Daniel Hearn and Jori Lenon interviewed about the DN North American Regatta.

Peter Lundt and Geoff Sobering talking about shop work and the Nordhaus Boatwerks.

March 7, 2014

Hudson River Sailing

Another great video (this time via Dan Clapp):

DN European Championships

The DN Europenan Championship finished today in strong winds (report and results and Deb's FB posts).
Karol Jablonski swept both the Worlds and European regattas. Ron Sherry bounced back from earlier disapointments winning the last race and placing 3rd overall. James "T" Thieler was 9th in the Gold Fleet, with Oliver Moore finishing 34th. Hal Bowman, Pete Johns, and Eben Whitcomb, battled it out in the Silver Fleet finishing 33, 34, 36.

March 6, 2014

DN Worlds and European Championships

The Worlds were completed (report and results) and the European Championship has started in Haapsalu Estonia (first day report).
A always, Deb Whitehorse is posting outstanding up-to-the-minute reports on the IDNIYRA NA FaceBook page. Gareth Rowland (K-11) is posting to the British Icesailing FB Group. Patrik Stenberg posted some nice photos on the DN Sweden FB page. James "T" Theiler is also posting about his experience on the NEIYA site.
[Sorry for all the FaceBook links... that just seems to be where people are posting things these days...]

Hudson River Sailing

The historic sailing on the Hudson River is getting lots of media attention.
Sailing Scuttlebutt published a nice article with video.

March 4, 2014

DN Worlds - Day 3 - Sailing!

Better conditions allowed for three races in the Gold fleet and two each in the Silver and Bronze fleets.
IDNIYRA Europe report and results (PDF).

March 3, 2014

DN Worlds

So far there has been no racing in Haapsalu Estonia. Sunday the C-fleet qualifier was sailed in poor visibility and thrown out by protest. Today poor weather prevented racing again (except on the hotel's ice-rink!). The forecast for tomorrow looks better.
The Four-Lakes own Deb Whitehorse is in Estonia with the fleet and posting reports (sometimes minute-by-minute!) on FaceBook and the DN regatta page.

Hudson River Sailing

A number of iceboats, including the historic A-class stern-steers Jack Frost and The Rocket, are sailing on "epic" Hudson River ice.
Glen Burger, who owns The Hound with his father, made this video of his 35 miles of sailing.
More details in blogs from John Sperr, Brian Reid, and The North Shrewsbury Ice Boat and Yacht Club.


Toledo was the hot-spot for sailing in the mid-west. After some long runs out into Maumee Bay during the week, racing over the weekend stayed closer in the harbor.
More details and photos on the Toldeo Ice Yacht Club's FaceBook page.

February 26, 2014

Actual Sailing Maybe Not

UPDATE: 2-27: Received a couple of calls and messages that the ice on Geneva is rough and even the skippers in the stern steerers are having trouble staying in the baskets. Via Jim Gluek reporting from the west end of Geneva Lake in Fontana: "Buddy Melges, one of the legends in our sport out for a ride in Burly's boat after lunch. At Chuck's today!" The day I leave town, conditions seem to improve. Your welcome.

February 24, 2014

"Two-seat wooden ice yacht revived, rigged in Monmouth Museum"

"Volunteers resurrect 1-ton ice boat with a 25-foot mast and 28-foot beam built in the late 19th or early 20th century.
By Betty Adams Staff Writer
Waterville, Maine Morning Sentinal

Built in the late 19th century or early 20th century, the one-ton wooden ice boat — sometimes referred to as an ice yacht — with a 25-foot mast and 28-foot beam was resuscitated earlier this year by a half-dozen determined men associated with the Monmouth Museum." Continue reading.

February 22, 2014

Sailing Rink

Via Mike Peter's, "Ice boating on a local ice skating rink. Times are tough. The rink is located in Jacksonport in Door county. Hopefully we'll have some real ice in the near future."


Sadly, not Photoshopped
Up in Minnesota, the Bald Eagle Ice Yacht Club Nite races may be postponed for a while. Photo courtesy of BEIYC Commodore Bill Reed (via Mike Bloom).

February 21, 2014

Runner Tracks Online Magazine

February issue of Runner Tracks, the newsletter of the DN class, is available online.

Monotype XV

While the North American ice sailing season has been challenging because of the snow and cold, Europe's winter has been the opposite. Though warm, there is sailable ice there. Click here to catch a Youtube video ride on a Monotype XV (somewhere in Poland I assume), one of the most popular ice boat classes in Europe. Monotype XV website.

February 20, 2014

Jack Frost

I can do this.
The recent post about the historical Hudson River stern steerers on Brian Reed's blog which included the Jack Frost prompted Winnebago ice boater Dave Lallier to send the following: "Runners are sharp, so only thing left to do is review last year's pictures. Have a couple of my grandson on the Jack Frost, looks like he is getting ready to pull the sheet in. Also, the Frost sailing in front of my house [on Lake Winnebago]. Won't see that every day. So much history in our beloved sport." Here's a short video from the day the Lawrence family set up the Jack Frost in front of Dave Lallier's house last season.

February 19, 2014

Extreme Boatwerks

Geoff Sobering created a time-lapse movie of Tuesday's "Boat Night" at the Nordhaus Boatwerks. "Dean Lima and I were rough-planning the boards for my DN project, and also making some new runner-protectors."

Next Gen

Junior DN and Ice Optimist sailors are currently competing for the World Championship on Lake Kisezers near Riga, Latvia through February 22. Here's video from the recent Polish Ice Optimist Championships.

February 17, 2014

The Roosevelts, Ice Boating, and Buckhouts

If you've ever wondered exactly what the connection the Roosevelt family had to ice boating read Hudson River Ice Yacht Club Secretary Brian Reid blog where he's posted some photos and background about FDR's uncle, John Aspinwall Roosevelt, who was an active ice boater on the Hudson River. "He had Jacob Buckhout build many fine ice yachts for him, including the largest one of all – (Icicle, of course) which was 68’ 10” in length and carried a sail spread of 1070 sq ft."
Jacob Buckhout and his son, George, were the most famous ice yacht builders in America during their time and their reach extended to the Four Lakes area.
The Scott family of Iowa owns a Buckhout stern steerer. The above photo was taken in 2001 at the Hearst and Stuart regatta in on Geneva Lake.
In 1911, ice boaters in Madison ordered a runner plank from George Buckhout for "the purposes of a [building] the largest craft ever seen in the west." (The 'MYC' turned out to be not so fast but that's another story.)
In 1876, Madisonians visiting the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition viewed a newly designed iceboat built by George Buckhout. They came back to Madison and built ice yachts based upon his designs. "The rig was built with a cockpit, sloop rigged, and the runner plank extended beyond the sides of the boat frame which gave the boat more stability."

February 16, 2014

"Ice boaters revel in cold weather, sail on frozen Navesink River"

By Lisa Rose - New Jersey Star Ledger
"When the stars align and the Navesink River freezes over, ice boaters gather in Red Bank for winter sailing in vessels that glide across the hard surface. Wearing helmets, goggles and snowsuits, they ride the river at speeds topping 50 mph." Continue reading and be sure to play the video.

Polish Championship

Photo from the Warmia-Mazury Regional Ice Yachting Association Facebook page. Regatta winner, Michal Burcznski P114 and Karol Jablonski P36 who placed third.
The DN Polish Championships were sailed over the course of three days in Gizycko and ended today with Michal Burcznski P114 taking top honors. Results here.This regatta is worth your attention not only because some of the best ice boat racers in the world competed here but also because Poland will host the DN Worlds in two weeks. The ice looks really good in the photos and is reported to be 30 cm (almost 12").
If you are on Facebook, take a look at these photos from Saturday's racing.

February 15, 2014

What Do You Do When Your Bulldozer Falls Through the Ice?

4LIYC member Andy McCormick once said that sailing a stern steerer is like trying to drive a fork lift (or bulldozer for that matter-Ed.) at 80 mph. Andy's brother, Tim, sends a link to a series of photos showing how some guys up in Minnesota retreived a bulldozer out of Lake Wissota.

February 13, 2014

Let Loose the "Dogs of Ice"

TJ Sherry, Frankie Hearn, and Griffin Sherry goofing around at the 2013 DN Centrals
Sailing Magazine

ICE DOGS by Heather Steinberger
"A love of hardwater sailing instilled by their fathers has brought these teens together in friendship and competition.
For most sailors, the sport is most enjoyable when the weather is at its finest...For a select group of enthusiast, however, sailing means something very different. It means plunging temperatures and bitter winds. It means jaw dropping speeds and split second tacks and jibes. It means dropping everything and hitting the road at a moment's notice, even if perfect conditions are two states away."
Here is normally where you would hit the link to "continue reading." The rest of this article is available by picking up the February issue Sailing Magazine. You can also download their app to your Ipad and purchase this issue. It's a wonderfully written two page article with great photos about our present and future stars of the sport .

February 12, 2014

Lithuanian Junior Championship

A beautiful video from the Elektr?n? Lithuanian Ice Yacht Championship for juniors in DNs, Ice-Optis, and Blokarts. Look at that ice.

Polish DN Junior Championships

The Polish DN Junior Championship was won by Jedrzej Wissuwa. When Frankie and Daniel Hearn went to Poland they spent a fair amount of time with Jedrzej and his father, Artur. Daniel writes, "They quickly befriended us. While we were there they took us to an indoor waterpark for some fun one evening. They were so gracious! They insisted on giving us a ride from the event site back to Warsaw, spending the evening at their home before we flew out the next day. Great people! "

February 10, 2014

More Red Banks Sailing

140209_Home Ice_16
The North Shrewsbury Ice Yacht Club in New Jersey enjoyed some sailing over the weekend. Jeff Smith snapped some photos using his drone. See them here.

"Like Snowy Owls":
Ice Boats on the Navesink

Screen shot from Asbuy Park Press, Peter Ackerman
Asbury Park Press
Kirk Moore

"Like snowy owls, winter sails only appear on the Navesink River in the coldest years. At the North Shrewsbury Ice Boat and Yacht Club, the walls are lined with 19th century photographs of ice sailors and their boats – some of which were back on the ice this winter." Continue reading.

February 9, 2014

Ice Sailing Hits the Big Apple

Skeeter skipper Jordan Glaser sends along this YouTube video of an ice boat cruising past the skyline of New York City on Jamaica Bay, Queens.
"I sail my F31 trimaran nearby in the summer.Tell the Skeeter fleet not to worry...although, the competition appears very willing... no one will have to travel to New York City for the ISAs".

Northwest Regatta News

Looks like Eloise will get to keep the NIYA Free For All trophy (first awarded in 1913) won by her dad, JD, in 2013 for a little while longer. The Northwest Ice Yacht Association regatta has been postponed until February 21-23, 2014. Check back on Sunday, February 16, for the next update.

February 8, 2014

Blue Day

Jay Yaeso and Ken Norton stopped by to help Bob Kau set up his new Skeeter hull today. Now that Bob's Skeeter looks to be ready for ice, maybe the ice will come back-somewhere!

February 7, 2014

4LIYC Honor Roll Nomination

In accordance with club By-Laws, Renegader Greg Simon has been nominated to the Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club Honor Roll by Don Anderson and Greg McCormick. The nomination will be voted upon at the business meeting on February 26. Read the nomination here.

Hmmm...What to do When You Can't Sail?

Build more boats you can't sail! Brilliant! Plank production in full swing at the Spaight Street Syndicate.

Vintage Ice Sailing Clips

Click on this link to You Tube to see a series of 18 very short videos of European, USSR, Polish, Estonian, and German ice boating championships that span the years between 1936 and 1968. (Just let the video keep running and they will automatically load.) Take a look at the radical wing masts they were experimenting with back in 1965. We could also consider reviving the tradition of throwing the winner up in the air [or maybe not].
Tip of the Helmet: Gretchen Dorian

February 4, 2014

"Counting Stars"

Well edited video from Dan Clapp. Great to see the orange Skeeter having fun on the ice at the Eastern ISA.

Hudson River's Vixen

Saw this on WOODENBOAT's Facebook page, a photo of the vintage stern steerer, Vixen, built in 1885.
Nice video here. Brian Reed, Secretary of Hudson River Ice Yacht Club has a blog, White Wings and Black Ice, dedicated to these first ice yachts in America.

February 3, 2014

EISA Drone

Photographer Jeff Smith shot some photos at the Eastern ISA with his new drone helicopter. See them here.

Sail Racing ISA Pictures

Jay Yaeso makin' wake
All photos credit Sail Racing/Jan Söderström

As we prepare for the ISA regatta called on for Lake Champlain this coming weekend, it's a great time to share these photos from Sweden's Sail Racing. Their photographer, Jan Söderström shot thousands of photos at the 2013 ISA regatta sailed on Lake Kegonsa for an ad campaign that was to have been released in the fall of 2013. But due to a very warm autumn and winter in Europe, Sail Racing has decided to wait with the Skeeter story until next season, autumn 2014. They also filmed quite a bit of video which will be released next season as well.

February 2, 2014

Eastern ISA Awards

C Skeeter Winners
Regatta Chairman: Jordan Glazer, 3rd place: Robert Queisser (right), 2nd Place: Bob Crum (not shown), 1st Place: James Lamb (left)

B Skeeter Winners:
Left to right 3rd: Keith Kennedy, 2nd: George Neyssen, 1st: Mark Hancik, RC: Jordan Glaser

A Skeeter Winners
L to R RC: Jordan Glaser, 3rd: Tony Bosco, 2nd: Chris Davidson, 1st: Dan Clapp

February 1, 2014

You're Winning the Regatta-You Fly Out At Leeward-What Do You Do?

Read it here.

"Ice Boaters Enjoy Frozen Bay"

"The frozen bay is a dream come true for those who ice boat. It’s become a popular winter activity for those who spend countless hours sailing in the summer."
Continue reading.

Eastern ISA Day 1

Photo Credit: Jeff Brown
Yankees on the line today at the Eastern ISA on Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh, New York. Day one standings posted here. Via Skeeter skipper Jordan Glaser, "Three races were run for A, B, & C Skeeter classes today. The day started out with little wind and ultimately blew nice & hard as the day progressed. There was plenty of hard, smooth snow after enjoying Brooklyn Bagels for breakfast, the DN boys set up there own course and ran the Eastern DNs. Of course, Dan Clapp was in top form and ran away with the A skeeter races today. Chris Davison, Tony Bosco & Jordan Glaser enjoyed duking it out for the other positions. Mark Hancik finally emerged in 1st after today's B skeeter Yankee races. Boy wonder James Lamb (from the New England Ice Yacht Club) took all the C Skeeter races. I'd like to see him match up against Gus Stauber (Rush) from Michigan. Attendees were from Indiana, Sodus Bay, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Red Bank, Lake Hopatkong, Greenpoint & Lake Ronkonkoma. Jeff Smith took a bunch of pics with his new drone (Watch out Craig Wilson!). We'll get Jeff to send you some."

Eastern ISA Called ON for Champlain

February 1-2, 2014
Launch: Gilbert Brook Marina
715 Lake Shore Road, West Chazy, NY Link to Map
Lodging: Holiday Inn Express, Plattsburgh Link to Map
UPDATE 2: 5:30 PM Dan Clapp talk in Champlain Room at Plattsburgh Holiday Inn Saturday night followed by-
Banquet: 7:30PM Green House Butcher Block Restaurant 15 Booth Dr, Plattsburgh, NY 12901 Link to Map

Setting Up for the Eastern ISA

Photographer Jeff Brown sent a couple of snaps from the Eastern ISA on Lake Champlain and reports there are 8 B Skeeters, 4 A Skeeters, and 2 C Skeeters.

DN North American Photos from Wander Artist

WanderArtists: DN Ice Yacht Racing &emdash;
Photographer and artist Amanda Palmer has uploaded her beautiful photos from the DN North Americans to Zenfolio where you can purchase them. See them here. Use the code "GoFAST" at checkout to get 10% off your order!

1968 Russian Championship

Via WSSA Secretary/Treasurer Andy Gratton alerts us to this really interesting Youtube video: "Matt Critchley found this video. Wing-sails on stern steerers, all they need is a bubble canopy. I don't even see any wires on these boats. Everyone should see these boats." See it here.

January 31, 2014

Monotype Regatta

Photo Credit: Andrey Maslov
Speaking of racing with two, the Monotype XV class held a regatta in St. Petersburg, Russia. With snow preventing us from sailing in the Midwest, it's good to see sailing on North America's east coast and internationally. More on the regatta here. Photos on Facebook here.

Doubling Your Pleasure in a Nite

"Twice as much fun perhaps even more. Something that is being kicked around by some of us Nite sailors is the possibility of racing with two in a boat with maybe a separate start at Nationals. The boat is a two seater, right? Why not utilize that open seat? Learning curves and attrition would change as well.

Read more.

From Vice Commodore Brett Larson: "I've mentioned to some in the class the possibility of a "cruising or two person" racing class. I think would be kinda fun to introduce newcomers to racing. And this bigger sail would facilitate that. And at Nationals, we'd have a nice break between races...Cuisers have a minimum weight for two, large sail (or not) and maybe only two laps? There are a couple of options so join in the discussion on the Nite Class Facebook page.

Hide this content.

"Former Olympic Ice-Boating Brothers Sail on Lake Minnetonka"

Lake Minnetonka Magazine
"Bill Allen speaks of his Olympic gold medal like you or I would speak of a high school football game. It’s fair to say that for most, winning Olympic gold would be an unbeatable moment. For Bill Allen, winning Olympic gold was a highlight—it was more than he could ever dream of—but it wasn’t the highlight of his life." Continue reading.

January 29, 2014

"Tom Freytag and other execs on the joys of iceboating"

"This winter's frigid temperatures should have made iceboating a paradise in Lake Geneva, Wis., but snows that followed mucked up the ice and insulated it, making it too weak to sail." Continue reading.


"After a three-year absence, four-inch ice retuned to our beautiful Navesink River over the weekend, enabling members of the storied North Shrewsbury Ice Boat & Yacht Club to take at least the smallest of their racing toys out for a spin. Larger craft, along the lines of the Rocket, that were more typical in the early decades of the 134-year-old Red Bank club, will have to wait for ice in the eight-inch range." Continue reading.

Ice Bird Worlds

Via Dave Hoder: "The NSIBYC has sailable ice. Today (Sunday 1/26/14) we had the first ever Icebird Worlds. Eight boats participated an the results are below. Ice birds are small eight foot long boats that are light and can sail on thinner ice and low winds. Perfect boat for beginners."

January 27, 2014

DN North American Photo Gallery

Local artist Amanda Palmer was on the ice on Plattsburgh and shot some beautiful photos. See them here.

January 21, 2014

Green Skeeter on Green

Nice to see Jay Yaeso caught a ride on Green Lake before the snow came. His video is posted here.

The DN Saga Continues

Here we go..Plattsburgh, New York. Follow along here.

January 14, 2014

DN North American Championship

For the latest updates regarding the 2014 North American Championship, keep an eye on the IDNIYRA site. All regatta updates are posted in the "Hotline" section. Simply click the "Hotline" link and you will receive all updates.

January 13, 2014

ICEBOATs Volume 1

ICEBOATs volume l by g r e t c h e n d o r i a n |

Gretchen Dorian's book, ICEBOATs volume 1 has hit the press. "A Photographic Introduction to the various iceboats that Gretchen Dorian has photographed throughout the Great Lakes, Montana and on Lake Baikal, Siberia." Click here for more information.


Bob Kau's Skeeter build in in paint. "Dis Is Da Other One".

January 12, 2014

"Shell Is Hell"

Can't take credit for the title of this post but that certainly was the case on Green Lake this morning when the presence of runner-grabbing wet shell ice caused the DN Western Regional regatta to be cancelled for the weekend."Shell is Hell" comes from "Lake Ice" about how shell ice is formed. Learn more about the pesky stuff here.

January 11, 2014

Catching Waves

DN Western Region regatta report from today posted here.

Results From Day 1

January 10, 2014

Green Ice

The Gluek/Isabell Skeeter "What a ride!"
From Jim Gluek who sailed on Green Lake Thursday,
Mark with a big smile getting ready to set up.
"Looking forward to a fun weekend. Mark (Isabell) and I sailed the last 2 days it was a blast for sure. Check out that ice!!!"

January 9, 2014

DN Western Region Championship

The 2014 DN Western Region Championship has been called on for January 11-12 on Green Lake in Green Lake, WI. Details on the launch, lodging, etc. on the
DN Forum. Watch for reports and photos from the regatta on the DN Regatta page of this website.

January 4, 2014

"Shiver Me Timbers"
Daniel Fisher
March 10, 2007

It's a good time to revisit the article about the World's Largest Ice Boat©, the Deuce, written a few years ago by Daniel Fisher.
"Going 100mph-plus in an antique ice yacht can make ordinary sailing feel downright pedestrian. Snowflake. Icicle. Avalanche. Ferdinand the Bull. Names of ice yachts from the golden era of ice sailing typically commingled whimsy with menace–and for good reason." Continue reading.

"Sailing 50 MPH Into The Teeth Of Global Warming"
By Daniel Fisher

I named my first iceboat “Inconvenient Truth,” in a nod to Al Gore and his prediction that my favorite sport would soon go the way of jousting and Pong. And indeed, iceboating has become a much rarer pleasure than in the late 1800s, when Dutch-American aristocrats regularly raced along the frozen Hudson River in their varnished wood ice schooners" Continue reading.

December 31, 2013

CE Firmbach Centrals Photos

Really nice photo gallery from the weekend's DN Centrals on Catherine Firmbach's website. Have a look here. You can also contact her if you'd like to purchase a print.

December 30, 2013

Regatta Recovery

I'll have more photos posted soon from the DN Centrals.
Congratulations to Griffin Sherry US 4 for his Gold fleet win and to Stan Jones US 4974 for his Silver fleet win.

December 29, 2013

Centrals Complete: Updating From the Road Edition

We are heading out of Detroit right now trying to find the Packer game on the radio but it's hard to find in Lions territory. Congratulations to Team Madison's Frankie Hearn for his third place finish in the Silver Fleet. Dad Daniel didn't too bad himself with a 9th in the Gold. Results here.

December 26, 2013

2013 DN Centrals

Via Kent Baker on the DN Forum:
"I am pleased to call the 2013 Central Lakes Region Championship Regatta AND Holiday Classic ON for this weekend!" Continue reading.
UPDATE: Daniel and Frankie Hearn will be representing Team Madison and I'll be along for the ride. Photos and updates will be posted on the DN Regatta Page.

Sail Italy

Click here for video
Last weekend, the Bavarian DN Championship was sailed in Italy on Lake Reschensee, about 3 hours from Munich, Germany amidst some spectacular scenery. See more photos and a report here. See results here.

December 25, 2013

Rent a Ride

Need a last minute Christmas gift? It is possible to rent a ride in an ice boat in Austria on Lake Neusiedl for €99/$135! Via Austrian DNer Roland Huber's Facebook page.

December 23, 2013

This Day in Ice Boat Rental History

Here's an ad that Bill Bernard ran 83 years ago today inviting the public to rent an ice boat at his boat livery on E. Gorham Street in Madison. Picture of the rental fleet is from the Bernard scrapbooks.

December 22, 2013

Voile sur glace Frasne décembre 2013

Our French correspondent, Serge Billet, caught a nice ride in the Franche-Comté region this week.

"Ice Sailing on the Canyon Ferry Reservoir"

By By Emily Harris
Distinctly Montana
"Canyon Ferry Lake is frozen again, a silver mirror reflecting miles of quiet pine forest. The wind blowing in from the north has brought freezing temperatures, and a group of adventurers have been eagerly anticipating this day. It’s late December and the ice is finally thick enough. David Gluek throws on one more warm layer, pulls on a pair of gloves, and steps into his 30-foot Skeeter: a T-shaped burgundy craft with a long, horizontal plank at the back." Continue reading.

December 18, 2013

See the World's Wind

Here's a live map of current wind conditions around the earth, "a visualization of global weather conditions forecast by supercomputers updated every three hours".

SAIL Magazine: Sailing Ideas to Keep You From Getting Frost Bitten this Winter

"One of the more amazing thing about ice boating culture is the extent to which aficionados will travel to 'chase the ice.'" Read more here.

December 17, 2013

Yes and Yes

SIBC's Jane Pegel sends along this Peanuts cartoon that another SIBC member, Jeff Brassel, shared with her. Something about it reminds them of ice boating! See the whole panel here.

December 16, 2013

Madison Sunday AM

Here's a great view of Madison's isthmus facing east shot Sunday morning by a Med Flight Doctor which has been making the rounds in Madison today. Lake Monona is on the right and Mendota on the left.

December 15, 2013

Canopy On

Bob Kau's Skeeter hull build continues.

Ice Sailing on All Russia

Video from Russian TV about Russian ice sailing and the Baikal Cup. Here's the clumsy Google translation,"Ice Formula 1 - the so-called ice sailing competitions for the Cup of Baikal. Hundreds of kilometers of the mirrored surface of the ice, powerful, gusty wind and gliders - that's all you need desperate athletes."

December 13, 2013

4LIYC Tune Up Series

Tools of the Trade by Peter Fauerbach
The Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club Tune Up Series is called on for December 14-15, 2013 for Lake Monona.
In one of the longest ice checks in the history of the club, the gang of 7 walked Lake Monona and found 3.5-5" of hard, black ice. There were two small areas of concern where the ice measured 3.5". We concluded that the lake needs to be sailed by an experienced sailor or scouted with an ATV on Saturday to make sure the two areas have thickened enough for safe racing. The best ice is in the middle of the lake. The east end of the lake is much rougher. We'll have more information as it becomes available. Remember, sailing with a club is safer than sailing alone. Don't sail alone! Stay with the group! The Tonyawatha landing is the best as far as distance to smooth sheet of ice. The Winnequah landing is a bit farther from the smooth ice.

"Waiting For a Winter Breeze"

The New York Times
Published: December 12, 2013 

"The mercury plummeted to below freezing on Thursday, and most people bundled up to avoid the cold. But for a certain branch of sailors, these temperatures are ideal. With the right conditions and a sustained cold snap, rivers and lakes freeze over, providing the perfect surface for ice yachting, a sport in which sailors navigate vessels across the ice." Continue reading. There's also an 11 image slide show with beautiful shots of eastern ice boating over the years. Tip of the Helmet: Henry Bossett

December 11, 2013

"The Lure of Early Ice is Hard to Ignore"

Commodore T's take the DN Western Challenge from the New England perspective.
"Looks like the regatta season has begun!

The Western Challenge Regatta is an informal DN gathering that has been going on for ten years or so- traditionally held the first weekend in December on the best ice in Minnesota… Yes, Minnesota. It’s a big state a little to the west of here."
Continue reading.

Western Challenge Update

Results posted here on

December 9, 2013

Big team maDisoN Turnout

Three development boats and a loaner from the Spaight Street Syndicate
"team maDisoN was well represented at the Great Western Challenge Friday - Sunday with 14 team members racing DNs, 1 member racing Ice Opti and 5 guests using development boats to get a taste for DN sailing. The event was hosted by our good friends from Minnesota, who were forced to go south this year to Wisconsin ice for the first time in the long history of the event. A "week of" snow storm knocked out all previously frozen Minnesota ice. In spite of the very cold conditions in LaCrosse, a great time was had by all.

Results for our new team maDisoN sailors racing in the Silver Fleet were particularly impressive. The Overall Silver Fleet title went to Dave Elsmo, who was at or near the top in every race. Silver Fleet races were also won by Tim Sugar and Scott Earnest, both of whom are in just their second year of DN racing. Hugh Sugar also put in an strong performance sailing his recently completed DN for the first time ever. Although second year DN'r Mike Barnett didn't land the top spot in this regatta, he, too, appeared to be consistently top ten. Our one Junior DN'r, Frankie Hearn, finished top 5 in the first race and top 10 in the second. Continue reading.

First Renegade On the Ice

Rich Eckstein sailed the south end of Lake Winnebago on Sunday, December 8 in his Renegade before the snow fell.

Throwing Snow

Here's Rich sailing the 2011 Renegade championship on Lake Mendota.

First Time in an Ice Boat

Photo Credit: DN Nederland
Darby and Tim Sugar's daughter looks pretty relaxed while testing out her dad's DN at the Western Challenge sailed in LaCrosse over the weekend. She must have brought some good luck for Tim because he won a race later that day. Two more races were sailed on Sunday in the Silver and Gold and there was one Ice Opti race. Ron Sherry is the overall Gold winner while 4LIYC Team maDisoN Dave Elsmo took the silver. I'll post more photos and reports throughout the day. Jim McDonagh will have the results for the regatta posted soon as well on

First on Madison Ice

Ice Optimist sailors Meta and Fritz Simon had the honor of being the first to sail on a Madison area lake Saturday when Mom, Hope and Dad, Greg took them to Lake Wingra. Unfortunately, the Hollywood ice is now covered with "nuisance snow" but we still have Lake Monona and Mendota in reserve. The club will be looking at the lakes later this week.

Shooting the Breeze

Photo Credit: JH Peterson-Shooting the Breeze
Russian ice boater Valeriy Dichenko R166 pushes off at the start Saturday, December 8 at the Western Challenge sailed on Lake Onalaska near LaCrosse, WI.
Professional photographer JH Peterson shot some beautiful pictures at the Western Challenge on Saturday. You can see a sample of them on his Facebook page now. He'll be posting them to his website soon.

November 22, 2013

First Runners On the Ice In North America

DNer Mike Madge writes he had great skating and sailing today near Thunder Bay, Ontario on Whitefish Lake, about 30 minutes out of town.

November 21, 2013

Inside the 34th America's Cup

Harken engineers Ben Biddick and Matt Schmidt gave a fascinating view into their roles as Oracle Team USA members during last night's presentation. I wish you could have all been there. Here are some photos and a short report of the event.

October 18, 2013

A Great Opportunity

DNs on Lake Kegonsa at the 2013 DN Western Lakes Regional Regatta
"Potential DN'rs, (Please pass along to others that may be interested) Winter is around the corner, and that means ice boating season is upon us. For those that are interested in doing some sailing, but don't have the time, money or some other barrier to putting a program together, we have a great opportunity for you this season. Active DN'rs, spearheaded by Daniel Hearn, are putting together a few DN programs and Ice Optimist with some equipment that was donated to him (for this purpose), along with some of his own and others extra equipment. If you are interested in being actively involved in assisting putting together one of these development programs, it would be available for your use at various local and travel events this winter. We are going to begin assembling these programs later this month. Please let me know if you are interested in participating in this program. You won't regret it!"
Thanks, Mike 4LIYC DN Fleet Captain
email: mike.s.barnett AT