Nature delivered the ice. Invites have gone out for days and today they came. Ellacoya was packed. Packed with 30 iceboats. Sailors came from all over New England, New Jersey, Long Island NY and four boats from Canada. People hit the ice but were unrewarded, the ice was smooth and fast and th wind never came up. As most of us know the next best thing to iceboating is talking about iceboating and of course, that is what we did. Remember not all iceboating stories happen on the ice.
Many in the crowd are NA orphans and in their honor, the NEIYA will hold the Small Sky (Common Sense) regatta in Ellacoya tomorrow. The wind forecast is favorable and with the current conditions, it will be fast. Remember races are open to any class that can put three boats on the line. Not racing? There is plenty of cruising space to wind up the fun meter.
See you on the ice tomorrow,
P.S. How about Chad and T currently in 1st and 2nd place in MT NA’s with racing tomorrow. Way to go boys and huge kudos to Karen for earning her way into the Gold Fleet. All three of their ears must have been ringing today. I will let T and Karen elaborate further over the next few days.
Setting up and ready to go out. Where are you? Come on up we will sail today and tomorrow and till the snow comes.
Questions drop me a note email@example.com
Spread the word. There is big ice on Winnipasauki launching from Ellacoya State Park.
The area has been skated and sailed with a consistent 4 – 5 inches (3.6 to 10.2 cm) over the areas that were checked. As you can see there is a nice smooth milky surface with some black ice. This is a big plate of ice and there are pressure ridges present and forming, cracks and other hazards lurking. Heads up out there. Talk to people who have been out and buddy up.
We are expecting sailors from the southern iceboat reaches of NJ, Long Island, and CT and to our Northern neighbors who have expressed a strong interest in making the drive south. Bienvenue et nous nous réjouissons de partager notre glace.
A team will be on the ice tomorrow late morning to do a deeper check. We expect to be sailing this plate for the next few days or at least till the snow comes in and makes a mess of things on Saturday.
Come out and play there is a racing event in the works likely Thursday and I know lots of cruisers, boards and skaters. Big ice for all to enjoy.
Additional information on lodging and evening refreshments and dining TBD.
Please leave a comment below if you intend on coming or leave a note in the forum section for more general questions.
Think Big Ice and see you there,
P.S. If you are new or interested in the short of iceboating Thursday would be a good time to come.
The NEIYA was asked to participate in the Andover Massachusetts Winter Fest and they gave us top billing!
NEIYA locals Peter Boynton and Frank Morse have volunteered to bring a couple boats and hopefully a sailing demo on Pomps Pond. It’s kinda small and hopefully, the boats can get on the ice. Peter and Frank will act as ambassadors and look forward to welcoming new iceboaters into the fold.
If your interested in the sport of ice boating, in the area or just want to hang out with other winter enthusiasts do drop in on Sunday, January 26th, 10-2pm Pomps Pond, 147 Abbot St, Andover, MA.
Put it on your calendar rain or shine,
Things are looking promising we have had a couple preliminary reports in from New Hampshire but they both need a closer look.
Charlie S reports on Wentworth, Nice resurface of lake Wentworth in Wolfeboro, NH.
Smooth grey ice top grade 6-7. All drain holes solid with 4+ inches of clear. Most ice 6+. That’s as deep as my drill goes. No shell ice. Just need wind.
VC Jay Whitehair sent in the picture of Lake Mascoma but has not set foot on it yet. A resident on the lake described “it looks like glass”.
Excellent public access with ample parking at the Shaker bridge. Stay away from the bridge area for the thin ice due to current. Before recent weather, there was plenty of ice thickness. It needs to be reassessed but should be awesome. New surface.
Treasurer Bob Haag reports that Bantam in Litchfield, CT took a major hit from yesterday’s weather and needs some sustained low temps to bring it back into play
There are additional reports of developing conditions at Sunapee and a couple nights of cold still needed. Like the others additional scouting must be done.
Anyone want to buddy up and check these prospects? Leave comments on this post or drop a not on the Forum at the top menu. Find someone to scout with DO NOT go out alone. If we want to sail this weekend the ice has to be checked.
After a short hiatus, NEIYA burgees are available once again. Show your iceboating spirit fly it from your halyard in the pits or your car antenna in the parking lot. They are hand made right here in Guilford CT by the Sail Bag Lady and made to last in a stiff breeze and will be around a long time. They are priced at our cost which is $40.25. Click here to purchase online
Let’s communicate about finding, scouting and sailing together. Comments in this post or in the forum. Several newbies have reached out to me in the past several weeks and they just need a little guidence. Eben Whitcomb helped out newbie Spencer Sprecker on Friday at Quaboag and he is sold on ice boating! Looking forward to seeing you out again Spencer.
There is a good crowd planning to head to the mid west for the DN North Anericans at the end of the week so some of the usual suspects will not be sailing locally but there are more iceboaters here than will be traveling so buddy up and have fun.
Think Ice where ever you go,
After what was a spring-like weekend temps are coming back to freeze up the Zambonied lakes and ponds. Venues need to be checked thoroughly but reports are coming in of some great potential.
We are keeping an eye on Sunapee in NH.
There were eyes on Bantam in Litchfield CT over the weekend and local wisdom a few cold nights might make it ready to sail. Again this is just a tease, we need some more cold and have it thoroughly checked out.
If you are planning on checking it out please double and triple buddy up. People have been leaving notes in the comments section below as well as the Forum at the top of the page.
Many of us (current count is 10) are planning to head out to the midwest for DN North Americans but I am betting we will have sailing choices closer to home. Be vigilent, scout safely and communicate with the rest of the group. And don’t forget to check in on the guys in Maine https://iceboat.me.
P.S. Don’t forget to report back on your scouting activities.
Decisions, decisions, decisions. Lots of ice has set up over the past couple of days but conditions are challenging. We were on Quabag before Christmas recent weather puts it in the unsafe till proven otherwise status.
New Hampshire has a number of rumors and people have skated including Otter pond, Squam and Winnipesaukee off Leavitts Beach and Wentworth. Sunapee though sailed yesterday is not considered safe now by those who were there a little over 24hrs ago. There have also been reports of ice on Sebago and Mallets Bay in VT has reports of decent ice.
T is trying to find the best option for the remaining unsailed regattas from 2019. His call will be made later in the day. Remember just about anyone can get on the course and if your not racing they can always use scorers or just sail outside of the course.
With so many new plates coming in all at once it is hard to say where the best and safest conditions are. Remember there is safety in numbers. We need further information from people on the ice. Buddy up scout and sail with extreme caution. There have been a lot of pretty ice pictures from skaters (some sail too) floating around on social and the web but we need a little higher confidence level.
I believe there are good sailing venues out there but things just need to be checked and please share so that we can spread the word.
Thinking about checking out ice leads and following the skaters? Buddy up. Don’t have a buddy post a comment below. Report back your findings via comment below or firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be rewarded when others come out to sail with you.
Sail Fast and Sail Safe,