2018-2019 Season Archives

2018-2019 Archives

Iceboating’s Spookiest Story: The Strange Tale of the Ice Soar

Pulling this one off the shelf again for a repost….
Today is Halloween which brings to mind iceboating’s favorite (and only) ghost story, “The Strange Tale of the Ice Soar“, by Greg Whitehorse. Make it part of your Halloween tradition!

Outside the windows of the South Side Ice Yacht Club, the Skeeters, Renegades and Nites were effortlessly gliding over the dark gray ice sheet. Suddenly, sailing into view came a chilling blast from the past. A huge stern-steerer, its yellow stained, canvas sails straining against the twenty mile per hour wind. Behind its sheer size, the Skeeters, Renegades and Nites disappeared for seconds at a time before appearing again on the other side.
Two, no three burly men steered and cranked and pulled, trying to tame the unruly beast. Moving in a southerly direction, its left (port? starboard?) runner gently lifts off the ice, a few feet at first, and then quickly shoots skyward. The runner plank is at an impossible angle to the ice. Surely the beast is going to capsize, but no, the three burly men continue to steer and crank and pull and the ice yacht slowly regains a more proper stance on the frozen surface. A slight change in direction to take advantage of a felt, but unseen wind shift, and the beast sailed away from view.

Continue reading.

Jack Ripp

Jack Ripp, devoted family man, 60 + year Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club member, iceboat champion, and gentleman, passed on this morning, July 20, 2019 after a short illness. Jack was one of the people who defined this club and we will miss his influence. Though he retired from active sailing several years ago, Jack continued to attend 4LIYC meetings and social events.
I will give you some facts and figures about Jack’s impressive ice sailing record, but they pale in comparison to his character; he was a steady, gentle man, admired and loved by all. Our deepest condolences to his family. If you have some memories of Jack that you would like to share, please contact me and I will post them.
Previous from 2010: “Large Crowd Gathers for Tribute to Jack Ripp at 4LIYC Awards Banquet


International Skeeter Association 1961
Western International Skeeter Association 1981
Ice Yacht Challenge Pennant of America 1964 1966 1967
International Renegade Ice Yacht Association Regatta Championship 1987 1988 1991 1996
Northwest Ice Yacht Assocation (NIYA)
NIYA Skeeter Titles 1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1966
NIYA Free For All 1962
NIYA Renegade Titles 1988 1989 1992 1998
Triple Crown 1967

In The Throw-Back-Thursday News: Emil Fauerbach

Page from William Bernard Scrapbook. PRINCESS II, built by Wm. Bernard and sailed by Email Fauerbach.

A few days ago, 2 separate emails arrived within hours of each other regarding history about one of Madison’s original champion ice sailors, Emil Fauerbach. It was a sign that it’s time for a history post. Henry Bossett ran across an article about the Madison ice yachting scene published in 1904 the New Jersey Ashbury Park Press. Peter Fauerbach (Emil’s great great nephew) and all things Fauerbach historian, shared a snippet he found in his research. Emil Fauerbach was most famous for winning the Hearst Cup in 1914 in PRINCESS II. He died a few years later and left such a void in Madison’s ice sailing community that many thought it wouldn’t survive.
Previous: Fauerbach Pennant Back on Fauerbach Ice Boat

Mini Skeeter Invitation

Not ice!

Via John Eisenlohr:

September 28 – October 6, 2019
Alvord Desert in southeast Oregon
Contact: John Eisenlohr jlsbfam@centurytel.net

If you would like to try your hand at land sailing here’s a good opportunity for fun sailing and fun racing. We have 6 Mini Skeeter guys willing to share their Mini Skeeters through out the week. We normally do some fun sailing tuning and fun racing around the marks.I’m inviting other iceboaters to go land sailing Sept 28th – Oct 6th at Alvord, a remote dry lake in SE Oregon.

We sail here every fall. Its one of my all time favorite places to camp as well as land sail.
Drive or – fly into Boise or Reno rent an RV or SUV and drive out to sail with us.

There are few amenities there so get your groceries in Boise or Reno.

Shorts to warm clothing for cold weather. It has been bellow freezing at this time of year there at night on occasion. The lake bed is around 12 miles long. plenty of room to sail for some great sailing! Natural hot springs, dirt biking, fishing and good hiking abound.

Alvord trips and info-

Soaring clubs use the dry lake as well as fly ins at certain times of year.

Iceboat Midsummer: Gather Round the Mast Pole

Using Lake Baikal’s spring regatta and Minnesota’s Western Challenge as data points, this week marks iceboating’s mid-summer holiday.  Ken Whitehorse and Paul Krueger celebrated by setting up Paul’s Class A Skeeter, RAMBL’N, on one of the hottest days of summer to see how the newly built boom looked. Jim Gluek stopped over to look over and talk Skeeter sails.

Yes, that’s a sail from the quiver of Bob Kau’s blue Skeeter now owned by Ken Whitehorse (and will soon carry PK’s number, 165).

Bottles Up!

Pat Heppert, his C class Skeeter DRIFTER, and the Wisconsin Skeeter Assoc. Bottle Trophy

It took a while, but the Wisconsin Skeeter Association Bottle Trophy finally found its way to last season’s recipient Pat Heppert. Looks like Pat had the perfect bottle waiting for it! Pat writes:

 It is a great honor to be a part of the legacy of this trophy, and I am eternally grateful to be the caretaker of this for 2019. The artistry and imagination of every one of Harry Whitehorse’s creations are truly impressive. In the background you will also see the new expanded headquarters of the Heppert boat works!

Iceboaters Going the Distance

Detail from “Great Lakes Freighter”, a painting by Harry Whitehorse.

The long distance summer sailing season is upon us and iceboaters are there. Let us know if you are sailing the Chicago to Mackinac race so you can be added to the list.

July 10, 2019
4LIYC Commodore Don Anderson will be sailing his second Transpac from Los Angeles, CA to Hawaii on MR BILL. Race tracking.

July 13, 2019
Race Tracking
EQUATION: (Santa Cruz 70, Section: 01) Ron Sherry, Chris Clark, Tom Dawson, Dave Elsmo
EXILE  (J88, Section 08) Andy Camarda
SHMOKIN JOE: (J111, Section: J111) Julie Jankowski
Julie is  arranging for a group photo of iceboaters immediately following the awards ceremony in front of the stage, probably around 2:30 Tuesday.

A painting from the imagination of Harry Whitehorse, a time when massive long distance iceboat freighters would rule the Great Lakes.


Wise iceboaters know that summer time means shop time.
Via Jay Davis, originally posted on the 4LIYC Facebook page:

Summer work project at Davis boat works in Iowa on Little Wind II. Repainting the bottom and sides. Also did some fixing on the trailer.

LITTLE WIND II, right side up at the 2013 Northwest Regatta, Green Lake, WI

4th of July On Ice

3 Nites and John Dennis’ (JD) A Class Skeeter on Lake Pepin at the 2019 ISA         Photo: Jann Klin

JD & Tom Nichols in 2012 

July 4th signals we’re climbing to the apex of the iceboating off-season (iceboat mid-summer is July 27, more on that later). It’s become an iceboat.org 4th of July tradition, ever since Tom Nichols built the boat, to post Class A Skeeter, EAGLE, in its red, white, and blue livery to commemorate the holiday. EAGLE was born in New Jersey, built and sailed by Tom Nichols. JD purchased the boat in July 2012 and brought her west. Below is a video of EAGLE’S first sail in Minnesota. Both Tom and JD have won the ISA regatta twice, Tom in 2005 and 2006 and JD in 2018 and 2019.


Harken Photo Contest

Pulled from video by Dave Elsmo “54′ of Fast” 

Harken Photo Contest

Heads up Stern-Steerer and Nite sailors and crew! Our friends at Harken are conducting a photo contest and the winner will receive a “Pewaukee The Way Locals Do It Weekend” which includes round trip airfare, lodging, a Harken 150 Cam-Matic cleat and a Harken Carbo Block, social gatherings, spectating the E Scow Blue Chip Regatta, and much more.

The photo must be taken from the boat in order to qualify for the contest. The rules state:

The most serious contenders will transport viewers, placing them in the middle of the activity on board, engaging the mind’s eye to help us feel the moment(s) your have selected.

It is certain, AT THE FRONT of sailing is a mental space much broader than a champagne-soaked awards ceremony or blasting down a 10 meter wave in the Southern Ocean. THE FRONT of sailing can be in an ice-packed harbor in Spitsbergen or diving to check an anchor placement in the Red Sea. AT THE FRONT…anywhere sailing at its most stirring is practiced.

Online Ship’s Store

Regatta Dates 2024


Enter your email address to subscribe to iceboat.org and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 279 other subscribers

National Iceboat Authority Web Page

Click for 4LIYC Meeting Dates


  • November 8 Zoom
  • November 22 Elections
  • December 6
  • December 20
  • January 3 Honor Roll Nominations
  • January 17 Deadline for By-Law or Racing Rules Amendment Submission
  • January 31 – in person, no Zoom
  • February 15 Business Meeting – Zoom only
  • March 6 – in person, no Zoom. Last meeting of the season.

Location: In person at Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club or Online using the Zoom App Members please email debwhitehorse@iceboat.org for the link.

Time: 6:30 PM


Web Analytics


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.