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.

The 2020-2021 ice sailing season is a few weeks away. 4LIYC racing and general regatta information will be posted here during the season. If this is your first time here, thanks for stopping by and check out our “How to Get Involved” page for more information. Please contact us debwhitehorse@iceboat.org if you have any questions. Think ice!

PAY 4LIYC MEMBER DUES

UPCOMING:
December 2, 2020: 4LIYC MEETING ON ZOOM: More information

BURGEE: Order your 4LIYC Burgee.

 

2021 DN World & North American Championship Cancelled

DN Western Region Championship on Lake Mendota

Via DN North America

Cancellation of the Gold Cup and North American Championships

The IDNIYRA Governing Committee earlier announced plans to decide by November 25th whether the 2021 Gold Cup would be held. Since publishing the Q&As it has become apparent that holding the regatta in 2021 is not feasible. The Canada-US land border closure has been extended to 21 December and Europeans cannot travel to either the US or Canada for non-essential reasons. Therefore the 2021 Gold Cup is cancelled.

It would be possible to delay making a decision about the 2021 North American Championships until the next decision about the Canada -US border, but public health restrictions within states and provinces make the feasibility of any international event doubtful at best. As a result the IDNIYRA Governing Committee has decided to cancel the 2021 North American Championships but will endeavour to hold an American Championship in the same timeframe.

Warren Nethercote
Commodore IDNIYRA

Book Club: Ice Boating by H. L. Stone

Technicalities.

Ice Boating by H L Stone

Previous: Book Club
Stern-Steerers ruled the ice 25 years before Frederic Gardiner wrote Wings On The Ice. In 1913 Herbert L. Stone published a popular iceboating book simply called Ice Boating. Stone, who edited Yachting Magazine, wrote the forward to Wings On the IceStone crammed his book with technical details and drawings. His friends in the yachting world contributed to the book, such as the famous yacht designer Nathanael Herreshoff who tried to explain the math behind iceboat speeds. 

I can find no evidence that Stone ever owned an iceboat, but he had a tremendous influence on the sport by helping to popularize it through articles in Yachting Magazine. Stone played a big part in reviving the Ice Yacht Challenge Pennant (IYCP) when he encouraged the IYCP trustees of the New Hamburgh Ice Yacht Club to pass on the trusteeship to the Eastern Ice Yachting Association. Stone was inducted into the National Sailing Hall of Fame in 2019.

White Wings Black Ice is the greatest website source on the Hudson River ice yachts of Stone’s time. Brian Reid’s website has page dedicated to vintage books as well.

3 Stolen Renegades & Trailer in Michigan


Ron Sherry’s trailer with 3 Renegades was stolen near Detroit, MI over the weekend from a locked storage facility. Please keep an eye out for these boats. The trailer can be replaced but iceboats built by Ron and his dad, Lorne, can not.

!!! STOLEN !!! !!! STOLEN !!! !!! STOLEN !!! !!! STOLEN !!!
PLEASE SHARE FAR AND WIDE!!!
Ron Sherry’s Renegade Trailer was stolen from Fraser Automotive near 14 Mile and Utica Road. It was stored in a locked, fenced area. The chain to the lot was cut and the locked hitch coupler was somehow bypassed, allowing them to drive off with the trailer and all its contents. Three generations of Renegade iceboats, Lorne’s, Ron’s, and CJ’s Sweet Caroline, plus all the planks, sails, and tools. The license plate on the trailer is D829645. There is a sticker that says Iceboat near the lock on the door. Please contact us ASAP if you see this trailer. ron@iceboatracing.com

My First Iceboat

Paul McMillan and ? enjoy a day on his first iceboat, a diminutive stern-steerer on Lake Mendota in Madison, WI c.1960.

4LIYC member Paul McMillan suggested a new series for this website called “My First Iceboat.” What was your first iceboat? Send us a photo and short explanation debwhitehorse@iceboat.org.

This was my first boat from sometime around 1960. I got it from the third generation of Trachte Brothers of the famous metal buildings. My dad made new sails by hand sewing. Note the low boom, similar to modern boats. It was a blast at the time.
Paul McMillan

Jack Ripp’s first iceboat, MUSTANG.

 

Skeeter Dimensional


Mad scientist (actually Professor of Industrial Studies in metal) Kyle Metzloff sent along these photos and an explanation:

Paul Krueger dropped off a old pattern for the Skeeter mast base. I will be making some castings, but redoing the pattern for future by 3d printing the pattern then casting in bronze.

 

4LIYC Meeting & Election Update

Zoom meetings from a Class A Skeeter iceboat are fast.

4LIYC Meeting Schedule

 

Join the 4LIYC

We made history last night as the 4LIYC held its first virtual club meeting. When this club was first organized in the late 1800s, the primary means of communication was the telegraph while telephones were a dream of the future. Vice Commodore Tim McCormick moderated the meeting and it was marvelous seeing new faces and reconnecting with former members who are dusting off their iceboats for the upcoming season. The meeting went so well that the club is upgrading to a plan that will allow for longer meetings.

The club held elections. Following the recommendations of several members who suggested stability under these circumstances, the previous officers agreed to serve another year. Your 2020-2021 Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club officers are Commodore Don Anderson, Vice Commodore Tim McCormick, Treasurer Jerry Simon, and Secretary Deb Whitehorse. Our next club meeting will be on Wednesday, December 2, 2020, at 6:30 PM. Club members will receive an email with the link to the meeting on December 1.

 

2021 Northwestern Regatta Cancelled


Notice from the Northwestern Ice Yachting Association Board of Directors:
Northwestern Regatta Page.

NORTHWESTERN ICE YACHTING ASSOCIATION 2021 REGATTA NOTICE

All participating members of the NIYA Board of Directors have been polled and the unanimous decision is to cancel the 2021 event.

The worsening pandemic makes travel, lodging and inside food service for a large group not viable.

It was felt that local club sailing will be possible to conduct safely with protocols in place for face covering, separation and only outdoor activity.

We encourage everyone to get out and sail locally, and look forward to the 2022 NIYA in the third week in January 2022.

 

Steve Schalk
Secretary/Treasurer
Northwestern Ice Yachting Association

Book Club


Wings On The Ice

Some of the ice sailing community may be spending more time at home this winter than on the ice – depending upon local conditions. If sailing is impossible this season, let the internet help you explore more about the sport and its history in the form of online books. This is the first in a series of posts about ice sailing books.

I stumbled across a new-to-me resource, the HathiTrust digital library. What a surprise to find a complete digital version of Frederic Gardiner’s Wings On The Ice. Published in 1938, Wings On The Ice has been one of the most sought after ice-sailing books in North America for many years. My copy was an eBay purchase that cost the equivalent of a gallon of epoxy and hardener.

 I learn something new or relearn something forgotten each time I open Wings On The Ice. For instance, Harry Melges Sr. is listed along with Walter Beauvais -Beauvais is credited with originating the Skeeter class – as a designer of the Four Runner Iceboat. (See Iceboating Tech That Never Caught On.)

Wings On The Ice is loaded with such a great wealth of information that I could devote a whole year of website posts to it. Speaking of relearning things forgotten, the book also references some of the earliest plans for ice yachts from Fredrik Henrik af Chapman’s book,  ArchitecturNavalis Mercatoria published in 1768. (See Chapman’s Iceboat Plans of 1768.)

If ice sailing building, racing, and history interest you, pull up a chair to the virtual fire, turn on the e-reader, and immerse yourself in the details of this sport.

 

Regatta Dates 2021

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4LIYC Race Results


Click for 4LIYC Meeting Dates

2020-2021

  • November 18
  • December 2
  • Elections, Elect Fleet Captains. Vote on ISA & NIYA Agenda Items
  • December 16
  • December 30
  • January 13 Honor Roll Nominations
  • January 27 Deadline for By-Law or Racing Rules Amendment Submission
  • February 10
  • February 24 Business Meeting
  • March 10

Location: Online using the Zoom App Members please email debwhitehorse@iceboat.org for the link.

Time: 6:30 PM

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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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