Big Boats on Geneva Part 2

Here’s the last “missing” installment from this series of videos. In this video, you’ll see how to wrangle a stern-steerer through the open water at the shoreline, typical of spring ice sailing.

Many thanks to 4LIYC Nite sailor Don Sanford for taking the time to find the nuggets in old movie footage and editing them into something worth watching.
Previous: Big Boats on Geneva Part 1.
Big Boats on Geneva Part 3

 

That Time On Little Bay de Noc

That Time On Little Bay de Noc

An example of a lateen rigged stern-steerer with an A-frame style mast.

Wisconsin Stern-Steerer Association Secretary Andy Gratton passed along this story from Steve Maniaci of Michigan about Little Bay de Noc and a stern-steerer with an unusual mast.

That capsizing photo (see “Who Did It Better?“) brings back memories on Little Bay de Noc, back in January of ‘69. My girlfriend and I were in my dad’s four-place stern steerer, going east and west along the leeward south shore of Gladstone’s waterfront with a strong north wind. Things were going well until I went beyond the power plant point and caught the full broadside blast of wind coming unimpeded from Rapid River.

 

We went up and over in a heartbeat. Thankfully, my girlfriend was wearing an insulated snowmobile suit that cushioned the blow. I was never so thankful for my old motorcycle helmet as that day.

 

I don’t know what the technical name is for that type of mast. We just called it a wishbone mast. The two parts of the wishbone were anchored to a metal bracket on the cross plank and were quite a ways out towards the runners. They came together with a metal bracket that held a large pulley for the mainsail halyard. The masts leaned forward and were held in place by two metal bars anchored to the nose bracket that also anchored the guy cables to the plank to the nose.

 

My dad bought it in the mid-’60s from Atley Peterson, an old Swede from Escanaba. Atley and his family built it, and he said they had clocked it at 90 mph back in the ’40s. The solid wood beam that makes up the body that everything attaches to has weakened with age and is no longer safe. The last time I sailed, it was on Little Traverse Bay in the late ’80s.

 

Iceboating is exciting and exhilarating, but it is so loud. I much prefer sailing my Boston Whaler Harpoon 5.

Big Boats on Geneva Part 3

More thrills and spins from the Class A Johnson Stern-Steerers on Geneva Lake. On Facebook, Fond du Lac sailor, Dave Lallier, commented that “According to what both Chauncey Griggs and Sid Morgan told me, there were several new Johnson Class A boats delivered to Lake Geneva by train. They were a gift for Christmas. These could be from that batch.”

Many thanks to 4LIYC Nite sailor Don Sanford for taking the time to find the nuggets in old movie footage and editing them into something worth watching.
Previous: Big Boats on Geneva Part 1.

Regatta Watch: 2021 WSSA Postponed to January 30-31

Regatta Watch: 2021 WSSA Postponed to January 30-31

Toledo Ice Yacht Club’s Jim Stribrny tests the limits of his Class A Stern-Steerer at the 2013 Northwest Regatta. For the record, WILD GOOSE landed back on the ice just fine.

Via WSSA Secretary Andy Gratton:

The Wisconsin Stern Steering Association regatta has been postponed to January 30 and 31, 2021. The next update will be Sunday, January 24. Check back here at that time.

Thanks for leaving the freezer doors open, the cold air is arriving. If you capsize, try to do better than both Don Ward and American Magic (see iceboat.org for more details).

Andy Gratton

WSSA Secretary/Treasurer

Who Did It Better?

Who Did It Better?

The iceboating community has been paying attention to the America’s Cup racing in New Zealand. We know that this year’s crop of foiling AC boats sometimes behaves like Stern-Steerers, and yesterday’s dramatic capsize is fodder for the commentariat around the planet. 4LIYC Commodore Don Anderson called me this morning. He suggested a comparison graphic between AMERICAN MAGIC and a Stern-Steerer, both about to capsize, which brought to mind the famous video and story about “The Day the Rosemary Tipped Over.” Thankfully, AMERICAN MAGIC’S crew safely survived the capsize though the boat sustained damage.  (Maybe they ought to think about a front-steering AC boat?)
Here’s the video embedded below, along with a link to Andy Gratton’s story. It’s also an excellent time to revisit when the Baker company tested foiling boats on Lake Mendota in the 1950s. Reread Foiled Again, initially posted in 2017.

Read Andy Gratton’s story, The Day The ROSEMARY Tipped Over.” Somewhere, Don Ward must be smiling.

 

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