Flat track on Gideon's Bay

Ensign768 and I just plowed a 1 mile x 30' - 40' oval track on Minnetonka's Gideon's Bay.
The course lies In an East-West direction to be abeam of our spring south winds.
We were able to get through the frozen drifts and down to bare ice. It is still a little rough but sailable. I think a day of sun or a little rain will do wonders. With the frozen drifts gone it should be fairly easy to clean off any new snow. the course is near the North shore and can be driven to from Excelsior's access or the Shorewood Yacht Club.

Wednesday track report

We went out and plowed the new snow off the track this afternoon and tried to sail. Alas the wind was too Westerly again. So... we added a .6 mile track in a NE-SW direction to be abeam of the W & NW winds.
I got in about 4 laps, as Mike kept plowing, before the light gave out.
(a little unnerving to pass a plow truck on a narrow track with an iceboat)
Fun stuff!



The track is much smoother than I suspected based on the drive around video...

Its a bit narrow, ~ about 40 feet. and long at 1.0 miles around the track. The current center island, ~100' hence the turn radius a gentle 50'

They've demonstrated in a long hour with a snow blade that a sailable track is viable, and managable, once ice thickness will support a pickup.

To race, the it needs, imho, to be wider in the straits and significantly wider in the turns.

It's a plausible venue for the WIT Short Course Event.


Tuesday track report

I just came in from the track. What a hoot! Com'in into the down wind corner with a runner flying. WOW. Sailed in 10-12mph SE winds. It seems like we got the radius for the corners right, a pretty natural and easy tack/jibe. The track is plenty smooth and we'll try to keep it plowed. Come on out and give her a try. If the winds look good tomorrow we'll get my cousins Nite on it and see how it does.(then maybe the Skeeter)

So how is the track looking

So how is the track looking today? Did it get warm enough to smooth it out? Inquiring minds want to know.

Looking good

I drove out today, wind was NNW so I gathered up my boat parts. By the time I set up however the wind had clocked over to the West so it was blowing straight down the course. I pushed and sailed 2 laps having to pinch too hard up wind and coast straight down wind. The track is smoother than I expected and is very sailable. I'll try again in tomorrows SE winds. The track lies 245/65 degrees. I put 2 videos of it on youtube, one sailing slowly down wind and one of driving around the track. search youtube under ensign1525 or Iceboat track and Iceboat flat track.

Video links...



Bummer about the winds today. I can't wait to hear how things go with a better angle.

What do you use to make the course?