Welcome to iceboat.org

The Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club is one of the most active iceboat clubs in North America. We’ve been building and racing iceboats for over 100 years in Madison, Wisconsin, USA.

Ice Is Never 100% Safe.

Our ice reports are strictly for iceboat racers. Recreational iceboaters, kite boarders, cross country skiers, and ice fishermen should not rely on our ice reports. We have safety equipment. Do you?

Buy or Sell Your Iceboat

One of the best pages in North America to buy or sell iceboats and their parts. There’s also a complete list of vendors who will supply iceboats, sails, and their components.

Common Questions:

How can I get started? How fast can they go? How much do they cost? Is it safe?

Regatta Watch

Information about the ISA, NIYA, WSSA, Nite, and DN regattas.

Iceboat Classes

Learn about Skeeters, DNs, Stern Steerers, Renegades, Nites, and Ice Optimists.

The Rules.

The purpose of iceboat racing rules is to prevent collisions.

Ice Yacht Clubs

The best way to learn about iceboating and make life long friendships is to join a local club.

Why We Sail.

“If all our ice were glass, slightly wet, and all our air reasonably steady with lifters just where needed, sailing would be perfect. Sometimes we do find this, and it is worth waiting years to have. Meanwhile we must accept the more ordinary ice conditions, ordinary weather and wind, and gracefully accept snow, sometimes for weeks. Our ideal comes from time to time, the Great Maker gives only so much of the very best.” Charles H. Johnson.

Iceboating for Kids

Ice Optimists were created specifically as a youth trainer, designed to be easily built using commonly available materials, and to keep costs to a minimum.


  • December 18, 2019: 4LIYC Meeting @ Breakwater Information

Merch Alert: 4LIYC Burgees Now Available

Fly the fast colors of the 4LIYC

We have received our first shipment of burgees. There are two ways you can get one – come to the next for 4LIYC meeting and pick one up for $35 or send a check for $40 made out to the 4LIYC and we’ll ship it to you.

4LIYC Burgee

$40 (includes shipping)
Send check payable to 4LIYC to
c/o 1200 East Broadway
Monona, WI 53716


Western Challenge Updates: It’s Wisconsin for DNs, Skeeter WC is Cancelled

DN Western Region Championship on Lake Mendota in 2018

Via iceboating.net

The DN Great Western Challenge is called “ON” for December 13-15, 2019 on Lake Puckaway Wisconsin.
Lake Puckaway is near Green Lake, Wisconsin. The Skeeter Western Challenge is cancelled for the season.


Apuckawa Park and Boat Launch
Located at the intersection of Fox Court and Toepper Drive, east of Montello.
Link to map


Mecan River Outfitters:
(920) 295-3439
Very limited availability.


T’ween the Lake Motel
510 Underwood Ave Hwy 23
Montello, WI 53949


Acorn Ridge Motel


Bayview Motel and Marina
(920) 294-6504
439 Lake St, Green Lake, WI 54941


Comfort Suites At Royal Ridges
(608) 567-4024
2 Westgate Drive, Ripon, WI, 54971, US


Boarders Inn & Suites by Cobblestone Hotels – Ripon
(920) 748-7578
1219 W Fond Du Lac St, Ripon, WI 54971

Nite News: Early Bird Regatta Tentatively Called ON for Puckaway

Photo: Tim Stanton

Via the Nite Facebook page:

Nite sailors I hope your ready!!!
The Nite Commodore and NIte Treasurer just got off the ice at Lake Puckaway and found just about pristine conditions. We recorded 2 1/4 inches of hard optically clear ice that drilled real hard. Though we are not at the 5 inch mark we would like initially, I believe we will get there by Saturday morning. This is a shallow lake with a max depth at about 7 ft so we know that will help this whole equation as well.

The weather forecast has snow coming on Thursday and we are not sure the full extent of what we may get, so as of now we will be planning as if a Nite regatta will be happening this weekend. We will do a final confirmation tomorrow.

Since there should be a lot of ice sheet available on Lake Puckaway, we would like to cordially invite the DN class to come share the ice with us and sail their Western Challenge on Lake Puckaway. It is the iceboater way to do things.

Please respect the landings should you come early and also the locals who maybe ice fishing.


Nite Class Commodore

Go West: Minnesota Monday

The right way to start the week, a video from Jim McDonaugh from the weekend sailing on Buffalo Lake in Minnesota, potential site of the Western Challenge DN regatta.

The Great Western Challenge is “ON” for December 13-15, 2019.
Primary location is Lake Buffalo in Buffalo, MN., sailing out of Sturges Park.
Check back for update on Wednesday and for hotel information.
Think ice!

When the Stars Align

Things got a little scientific next door at the Whitehorse/Krueger Skeeter shop today. Ken set up his newly painted Class A Skeeter and he and Paul spent the day getting the runners aligned just perfectly.

Keep An Eye On This And Your Runners Sharp…

Euro and GFS low temperature models for December 11, 2019

One of the amateur weather geeks I follow on Facebook, Rippeology, posted this beautiful graphic today. Would it ever be possible to have too much sailable ice? As he says, time will tell.

Euro and GFS both went REALLY cold with overnight model runs for the middle of next week. An outlier or a trend? Time will tell.

Spaight St. Syndicate: C-Section

The patient and the target.

Previously at the Spaight St Syndicate
Winter is definitely coming! Daniel Hearn’s C Skeeter has emerged from the basement incubator.


The delivery was scheduled for 10:30 a.m., Saturday, Nov. 30. The natural way was not going to be possible, and after nine months, my beloved was ready for this to be over. So I let my household duties slip a bit—what’s a clogged bathroom sink when we’ve got sinks on other floors? And so a couple of kitchen cabinet doors fell off—makes it easier to put stuff in and take stuff out? Little sympathy, here! Can you blame a man in my condition?

I’ve been crying myself asleep nightly ever since she told me she wouldn’t be right at my side. I know she loves me, but she said there are just some things she’s not equipped to handle. I’ve come to understand that the miracle of birth is not just about bringing a new life into this world. It’s also an incomprehensible feat of physics. That… is going to get from here to there, how? Many a visitor, starring at the large mass late in my gestation period, offered their unsolicited input, “dude, that ain’t happen’n.” I appreciated their offer of help.

Now I don’t have the smartest friends, but they weren’t completely wrong. This was not going to be your normal delivery. Only way this girl was coming out was a surgical extraction through a window under the back porch that’s never been opened in the 29 years we’ve lived in the house.

Admittedly, I’m a wuss, so I told the doc to use any scientific crutch available. Accordingly, she instructed the operating team to remove the bubble. “No need to stress the incision any more than necessary.” I nodded my head in agreement, my mind racing with marginally rational thoughts. What if she’s b(road)reach? What if the sheet is wrapped around the steering wheel? What if they drop her? What if she’s an Ohio State fan? I requested the epidural, even though I was having a C-section.

Next thing I know, my little bundle of joy is resting peacefully in her 25 foot aluminum bassinet with tandem torsion axles and electric brakes. Crazy the gear they have for the little tikes these days!

Time to learn to sew, because now my little girl is going to need a blankie.

Now That’s a Birthday Card!

Jim created this custom birthday card for  Renegader Jerry Simon.

Renegade sailor, Jerry Simon, thought he was going to our Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club fall party last night but instead was surprised to find himself as the guest of honor at his birthday party that Jim and Patty Nordhaus arranged. Jim spoke for us all in a special tribute to Jerry and recalled that Jerry was the first one to welcome him when Jim attended his first 4LIYC meeting. It should also be noted that Jim and Patty carried on the tradition of serving a ham. It may seem like a small thing, but it was begun by Jim Payton and continued by Peter Lundt. It’s a gesture that reminds us of the long history of our club and our members.  Thank you to the Nordhaus family and to all club members who attended. It was the perfect kick off to the upcoming season.

Via the 4LIYC Facebook page from Jim Nordhaus:

We had our annual picnic at the boat shop tonight. It also was a tribute to our long standing member Jerry Simon. It’s his birthday tomorrow 11-27-19. His ongoing never ending contributions were celebrated tonite and Jim gave a short list of some of them: ice checker, treasurer, four wheeler tender, marks manufacturer, race manager, regatta winner, boat builder, on and on! Jerry has not only helped to perpetuate the sport but he has been an excellent example of sportsmanship. It is our pleasure to know you Jerry and have a wonderful birthday tomorrow.
Your friends at the FLYC!

Regatta Dates 2020


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National Iceboat Authority Web Page

4LIYC Race Results

Click for 4LIYC Meeting Dates


  • November 6
  • November 20 Elections, Elect Fleet Captains. Vote on ISA & NIYA Agenda Items
  • December 4
  • December 18
  • January 2 THURSDAY Honor Roll Nominations
  • January 15
  • January 29 Deadline for By-Law or Racing Rules Amendment Submission
  • February 12
  • February 26 Business Meeting
  • March 11

Location: Breakwater Restaurant

6308 Metropolitan Lane

Monona, Wisconsin

Time: 6:30 PM

(Come earlier for dinner)



Lake Access Permits

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

    • Lake Mendota Warner Park Mendota County Park
    • Lake Monona Tonyawatha Tr. Olin Park
    • Lake Waubesa Goodland Park

Purchase Lake Access Permit Online.


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