It aint over, but.....

Sorry, folks, but the end is near. First, the “Powers-To-Be” moved up the the first day of spring. We traditionally celebrated the beginning of spring on March 21. Now, however, astronomers and calendar manufacturers say spring starts one day earlier, March 20. By my calculations, that’s one day of sailing we will never get back.

Adding insult to injury, if you sail out of Duluth Harbor, where there is still over 24 inches of ice, you better move your boat. The Coast Guard reports that the ice cutter named ALDER has begun spring ice cutting operations. The ALDER is huge. It is a 225' multi-mission buoy tender homeported in Duluth. ALDER's primary missions include law enforcement, search and rescue and, yes..... ice breaking.

The ALDER will get an assist from the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker SAMUEL RISLEY. With a clear path, the Soo Locks in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., connecting Lake Superior to the lower Great Lakes, are set to open March 25, signaling the beginning of the 2019 shipping season.