Sunday, January 15, 2017

Last sailing before the thaw...

Classic sunny day on the ice. Teasing breezes that gets you and the boat a couple hundred yards out of the pits; then it dies. You're then pushing the boat back in.  You keep getting sucked in. But you never know. About 2:00 a stiff breeze came up for 20 - 25 minutes.  Some nice runs for Whirlwind, Whirlwind III and Lady.  Breeze died. Boats were then pulled up on shore to wait out the upcoming thaw.   We accept the hours of set up for that 15 minute spin after 2 years of no ice.  

A bit distant, but Whirlwind dances up on 2 runners across the Lake!

Lady, here piloted by past commodore Brett.

Whirlwind pushes out, looking for a breeze.  
The coating of last night's snow didn't slow the boats down at all.

Whirlwind experimented with different runners  - 2 sets with different angles -
to see how she handled in these conditions.


After the rain  & several days in the 50s, ice at a local Hudson Valley Lake managed to hold on and Friday night's cold firmed up ice and, just as important,  the mud in the front yard.  
Whirwinds I, II, and III, L-R.

There was a harmonic convergence of Whirlwinds outside of Newburgh as Whirwinds I, II, & III took to the ice. 2 of the 3 put runners to Hudson Valley ice for the first time ever.  A few puffs of wind mid-afternoon got 2 of the 3 out for a few nice runs across the Lake. We have about 40 hours until the next "January thaw" puts the boats on blocks for a spell. ( How many January thaws are allowed??).
Take the opportunity while one can.

Brand new plank for Whirlwind.

Whirlwind. Built by George Buckhout, circa 1920. 31' 350 sq ft of sail.
She's fast!

Whirlwind II, circa 1920, originally from Vermont.Was discovered in a barn in Maine and restored by
Chickawaukie Ice Boat Club wizards Bill Buchholz & Lloyd Roberts ( and one other craftsman I can't remember).
I acquired her last winter and this was her first time on the ice. She's a beauty!

Whirlwind II is 22' long. A storm sail was rigged initially to finish her restoration. Plans are to convert it back to gaff-rigged
perhaps a cat boat or sloop rigged.  Not enough wind today to push the small sail area. That's where teenagers come in.... 

Whirlwind III, circa 1930; ~250 sq ft of sail; 30' long. 

Whirlwind III was built in Syracuse and sailed on Lake Onondaga.
Now sailed by the Lawrence family, 2nd owners.

Beautiful double cockpit.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Winter. Ice. Snow. Cold. and the Nothing....

Our friend Ben recently recited this Wallace Stevens poem at an assembly at my school. Felt it was fitting for today. Happy New Year!

The Snow Man

Related Poem Content Details

One must have a mind of winter 
To regard the frost and the boughs 
Of the pine-trees crusted with snow; 

And have been cold a long time 
To behold the junipers shagged with ice, 
The spruces rough in the distant glitter 

Of the January sun; and not to think 
Of any misery in the sound of the wind, 
In the sound of a few leaves, 

Which is the sound of the land 
Full of the same wind 
That is blowing in the same bare place 

For the listener, who listens in the snow, 
And, nothing himself, beholds 
Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.