Magic: Ice boating in Michigan


2006_01_20icebt042, photo by gretchdorian.

Gretchen Dorian has a great set of photos from a day of DN ice boating at Indian Lake State Park near Manistique. – makes a great slideshow!

Michigan has a long history of iceboating. The Detroit News’ excellent Rearview Mirror series includes Sailing on Lake St. Clair’s icy winter winds. They write that ice boating or ice yachting began over 4000 years ago in Northern Europe and was a source of entertainment in Michigan lumber camps. DN IceboatThe article also relates what the “DN” you see on so many ice boat sails stands for:

During the winter of 1936-37, in the sawdust covered hobby shop of the Detroit News, master craftsman Archie Arroll along with ice boaters Joseph Lodge and Norman Jarrait designed a racing ice boat they called the Blue Streak 60. Later the craft would come to be called the DN 60, the DN standing for the Detroit News, and the 60 referring to the size of the sail. Howard Boston, whose family remains in the sailing business, helped construct the first sails. (Doyle Boston Sailmakers of Holland)

Ice Boating Timeline reminds us not to forget about the other side of the state and Gull Lake and (as usual) Wikipedia can tell you more about iceboats & iceboating.

Update: I was just sent a nice video featuring Jack Jacobs (owner of Magic) talking about ice boating.

2 thoughts on “Magic: Ice boating in Michigan

  1. I think that iceboating and boats are one of the finest subjects for color photography there is – blue, white and rich wood – amazing. Be sure to look through Gretchen’s set, there are some great detail shots.


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