Sunday, March 14, 2021

Video Round up of Winter 2021- Athens & Orange Lake

 A collection of some of the video taken this winter at Athens & Orange Lake.  enjoy!


Athens sailing 2/13/21   courtesy of Jesse Turnquist 

Athens, Flare sailing:    (this will take you to the page in the blog where originally posted)

Orange Lake:

Glen's videos    Orange Lake1  3/6/21            Orange Lake2   3/6/21 

Red Bank sailors' Video:     Orange Lake Stern Steerers 3/6/21 

Sunday, March 7, 2021

Last Day Orange Lake New video from Saturday! Season over

 One & done as it is said...  It was a short few days but some great sailing took place at Orange Lake. 

There were a few hours this morning of fickle winds, but half the fleet got in a few tacks and a race or 2 took place. By noon boats were being dismantled as the strong sun, softening ice and dying winds spelled the end for this season.  

Georgie II and Genevieve toward north end of the Lake, taken from the Lakehouse. 

Kevin, with kids, aboard Ice Queen.

Reid taking the tiller of Ariel as winds begin to die. He first sailed Ariel with Ray Ruge at EIYA races at Croton in 1970. 

 Boreus, ghosting back into the pits.       Warm weather made breakdown a lot easier! 

More edited footage from Saturday sailing. Watch first 30 seconds for A Boat race start & a wild hike!  Also DN sailing with 3rd generation iceboater from the Burger family.  Nice hiking here Daniel!

Saturday, March 6, 2021

One last sailing weekend - with an awesome collection of antique stern steerers! March 6, 2021 with new video.

 After a few good weekends of sailing on the Hudson at Athens, the river ice was quick to break up after a few warm days and strong winds.     Those warm days though,  were enough to help local snow covered lakes to smooth out & with a string of cold nights we were rewarded with nice hard surfaces with sufficient thickness.  This set up nice ice at Orange Lake, which had been snow covered for some time, and the southern fleet of ice yachts were rigged for sailing this first week of March. 

High winds limited sailing late this week but Saturday saw some spirited racing and a strong hand on the tiller was needed to keep the boats down! It was cold, gusty and a fabulous gathering. The Lawrence family again extended themselves most graciously making visiting sailors most welcome & well fed.  A big contingent of ice yachts from Red Bank, NJ arrived and we had a great showing of big & small classic stern steerers for  racing & pleasure sailing. Other ice boats included Arrow class, DNs,  & Lockley skimmers.  

Hudson River Ice Yacht Club boats included:   Ice Queen, Ariel, Whirlwind, Sweet Marie, Genevieve, & Boreus. 

 The fleet from the North Shrewsbury Ice Yacht & Boat Club included  Ymir, Georgie II, Ruth, Phantom, Icicle, Trudle, Old 33, and another D class stern steerer.  

Many of the Big "A" boats ( sail area in the 350 sq ft range) spent the day racing on the North side of the Lake. Gusts up to 20-25 mph had boats hiking at times.  The Whirlwind came down hard from one hike resulting in a break in the starboard side of its hollow backbone. Repairs will be forthcoming before she is ready to race again.   Boats traded first place finishes over the many races, including Ariel, Georgie II, Ice Queen & Ymir.    

Ice Queen, Ymir, Ariel ready to race.   These are considered "A" boats - "A" being class size of ice yachts with 350 sq ft of sail area.                                                                      photo courtesy of Dave Drawbaugh

Outside the race course Skippers gave rides to friends and onlookers. Don sailed Sweet Marie , which he recently acquired from the Gilbert family, who had sailed & maintained her since 1900 at least. 
Capt. Steve took young and old out on Boreus &  Brett used the party boat cockpit of Genevieve to take many out for rides.  

Looks like there is one more day of sailing at Orange Lake, boats will likely be dismantled as the upcoming second week of March is bringing very warm temps which will end the season. 

Here's a short video from Glen. It captures the very beginning of one of the A boat races - if you look carefully you'll see Georgie in a nice hike;  The majority is Glen in his DN, chasing Capt. Steve on Boreus, around the Lake.  Nice capture Glen!

So great to see Sweet Marie ( circa 1900) back in action!  She last sailed in 2004 on the Hudson at Rokeby.  I recall former long-time owner & skipper Tom Gilbert sailing her on Orange Lake in the late 90s.  He told me the story of he and his family fashioning the new backbone for her in the 1930s.  

Captain Steve, giving some young sailors their first ice boat ride.  Ice Yacht Boreus ( circa 1924) 


the"pits".. there were about 20 boats on the ice. Boats took a break from high winds for a wonderful feast on shore. 

Food nourishment, giving old bones and muscles a needed break...  Thanks Rick & Jane!!

It was so nice to be at Orange Lake again. There is a lot of ice boat history here, and  nice to be part of a new chapter. 

GeorgieII, Ariel, Ice Queen.    Georgie & Ariel have been racing and sailing for over 110 years!  


Ymir was built by George Buckhout in Poughkeepsie. 
She eventually ended up in NJ with the Red Bank club.

Ruth, formerly known as"Red Jack" She sailed at Orange Lake in the 60s. 

Sunday, February 21, 2021

Incredible Day at Athens 2/21/21 Check ice conditions------>


Photo courtesy of Bob Wills

Beautiful sunshine; good wind (shifty winds with sudden puffs, but less intense as Saturday); there were 2 more DNs and 2 Arrow class boats.  The large expanse of ice got a lot smaller today with many boats, people, dogs, kite skiers and even more people.  You needed to be very alert to keep clear of the throngs.  All went well!  also... Hot pancakes and muffins;  an impromptu accordian-tuba band; Spinning tops; lots of smiling faces.  A glorious day on the ice! 

Steve's Boreus; took many guests for fast rides! 

Greyhound - Her first sail with new caretaker John. Fine day sailing with family & friends! 

Took a nice late afternoon sail on Vixen. Sail plan looks a bit different from this angle.  Vixen's owner, Reid,  again gave many many rides to young & old alike. John A. Roosevelt's yacht, built in 1885. 

You never know what might materialize at an Ice Yacht gathering....  accordions and tuba serenade the ice boaters...  ( You may remember the Brass Band at Astor Point in 2014)

and giant spinning wooden tops! care of Paul ... 

Breakfast Crew provided pancakes, muffins, bacon & coffee...  photo courtesy of Bob Wills


Boats wrapped up tight in the cove.  Maybe more sailing in days to come??  Will watch ice conditions this week - always ready to mobilize quickly if we need to get boats off the ice.  

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Athens - 2nd weekend 2-20-21

 A large crowd gathered on the ice in the cove behind the historic Van Loon  House in Athens on Saturday. The snow left from the storm of Thursday-Friday reduced to about 2 inches. The brisk winds helped the boats runners cut through the fluffy snow well.  Boats navigated in gusty and shifty winds, making for some tricky sailing with a steady hand on the tiller and keen readiness for wind shifts. Some folks were able to catch a ride, and Reid gave a steady stream of on lookers fast rides on Vixen. Puff caught a strong gust resulting in a tear in her old mainsail. We'll have to locate another 250 sq ft mainsail to get her up and running again.

The marconi-rigged Boreus (circa 1924)  arrived, bringing the total number of stern steerers to six.  There were 2 DN class bow steerers, an Arrow, and a Lockley skimmer. It was a lovely day on the ice, with Chef Kendall brewing up a pot of hot dogs. 

Another day on the ice Sunday! 

The boats are in a nice protected cove with easy access. Close to a hundred folks came and went over the morning & afternoon.
     2 seater Arrow class.  

Vixen, Dan the kite skier, Puff, Mary Ellen
Puff just wrapped up her mainsail after it tore. 

 Vixen, Mary Ellen, Puff (earlier) 

Friday, February 19, 2021

Wednesday at Athens...from above!

Some beautiful images from Wednesday, 2/17/21
Aerial photos courtesy of Daniel Spitzer 

These photos courtesy of and copyrighted by Daniel Spitzer. 

And, here's some great drone footage of Flare on the Athens ice sheet, 2/17/21.  
Many Thanks to Derek Brown for sharing. 

Video courtesy of Derek Brown

Another great video, courtesy of Jesse Turnquist 

Waiting out the latest snow...


 Greyhound (circa 1905), with her new caretakers arrived Thursday. She is originally from the Huntington estate in Staatsburgh.  There was no wind & no sailing.  3-4 inches of snow fell Thursday into Friday. Will be seeing if surface recovers enough to be back out on the weekend.

Meanwhile, here is a movie made by Sam Sebren, with footage from the last time we sailed Athens in 2009. Ice Boating in Athens.