Escanaba: Almost Too Hot to Iceboat!

WISCONSIN (Andy Gratton), SLICK CHICK (Mike Kroll), and ACE OF SPADES, (Mike Peters) on Little Bay de Noc, Escanaba, MI Photo: Mike Peters

Nite sailor Terry Reynolds has been keeping a close watch on his home ice at Little Bay de Noc in Escanaba, Michigan, and the weeks of waiting paid off this weekend. The assembled iceboats enjoyed one of those rare days Terry and the other sailors will be talking about for a while, ice sailing at a temperature of 60 F! Mike Peters sent this photo and reported that they had many rides and a great day of sailing. Below zero F night-time temperatures, this coming week could keep that sheet going for a few more days, so it might entirely not be the last call.
UPDATE: Drone footage from the day.

WISCONSIN: Fine Art in America

Scott Smith Art Print Stern Steerer Iceboat

“Iceboat” by Scott Smith

Here is something for the Labor Day weekend to get you thinking ice. Via stern-steerer skipper Andy Gratton who recognized his WISCONSIN iceboat but not the shoreline, though he thinks it may be Pewaukee. The image was created by Wauwatosa artist, Scott Smith, and can be purchased as a print or greeting cards on the fineartamerica website. Below is another great image of WISCONSIN in hiking mode.

Photo: Gretchen Dorian

Nite Nationals Photos

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Out on the ice for the Nite Nationals!

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Not much to report for today because snow ended sailing on Lake Mendota. However, Saturday was one of the most memorable days spent on the ice in Madison in years. There were a few thousand people introduced to iceboating at the Frozen Assets Festival at the Edgewater. Around noon, the Nite fleet and 4LIYC Renegades sailed up to the Edgewater and served as the backdrop for the MARY B stern-steerer which was on display at the festival. The boats were immediately descended upon by festival goers and sailors spent a few hours explaining our sport to the curious. Andy Gratton and Mike Kroll gave gave some rides to and from the launch area on Andy’s beloved red stern steerer (complete with the plank-riding bear) WISCONSIN. The Nite banquet was a rousing good time at the German restaurant and beer hall, Essen Haus. Nite skippers embraced the tradition of passing around glass boots filled with beer. What an exceptional day!

Here are some shots of the festival from the crowd.

102.6 Miles of Winnebago Memories

Photo: Gretchen Dorian      Andy Gratton’s WISCONSIN

Via stern-steerer skipper Michael Kroll:

A great day of sailing on Lake Winnebago! Andy Gratton and I set sail at 10 am this morning, sailing the famous Wisconsin, from Oshkosh on one of the best Lake Winnebago excursions ever.

We headed south to David L Lallier’s house in mind for our first stop. As we passed the wayside, we saw 2 sails near shore. We sailed into the way side to find Mark Wiener and Dan Tess sailing DN’s. After a brief chat we continued on to Dave’s house. Mark and Dan followed. We arrived at Dave’s house to find him working in his shop. After a slight arm twisting, he decided to come sail with us. He sailed Mr. Dass. His friend Rob showed up and sailed Ella. I was told both those boats are Don Ward built boats. George Gerhardt also showed up at Dave’s House. At this point George hopped in Wisconsin with Andy and I sailed with Dave in Mr. Dass.

What great fun. We all sailed the south end of the lake for awhile and ended up at the FDLYC. I took my spot back on Wisconsin and we parted ways. Andy and I headed north with the intent to make it to the north shore. After navigating the cracks and rough ice we ended up turning back for Oshkosh at Garlic Island just north of Oshkosh at around 3 pm. We figured we would run out of daylight if we continued North. We made it back to Oshkosh around 4 pm. I rigged the Flying Cloud and we continued to sail in the bay until after dark. We needed 10 more miles in the bay to reach our goal of 100+ miles. We sailed a total of 102.6 miles. After this long and fun filled day of sailing we walked off the ice to the SSIYC for a well deserved fish dinner and a couple of beverages. Words just can’t describe the memories this day of iceboating I will have forever.

WISCONSIN on Lake Winnebago in 2017 in similar conditions.