How It All Began….
“And you may ask yourself: Well? How did I get here?” David Byrne, “Once In A Lifetime”
How did we get started with all of this iceboating insanity anyway? As best as anyone can tell it was the Dutch who took a break from carving shoes one winter and threw some steel (or something) under their workboats so they could play and maybe keep working when things were frozen in.
The Dutch painter Hendrick Avercamp painted scenes of people skating, playing hockey, and generally goofing off on the ice in the early 1600’s. Iceboats are clearly seen in the background of some.
Not too much of a stretch to think that some kind of wind-powered craft was cruising over a frozen lake or bay long before that…. One can only wonder- did a group of Neanderthals ever discuss runner alignment methods? Probably.
But if daydreaming isn’t your thing have a look at the video below- It is some great footage of some modern-day Cloggies sailing some boats that would not have looked out of place in 1610. Very cool. Thanks to the Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club site for getting me thinking about this stuff….
James “T” Thieler
12 Channing St.
Newport, RI 02840
401 258 6230