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community weblog - [ SNOW ]

One dead after warm temperatures make for dangerously thin ice

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(Grattan Township, January 1, 2005, 6:00 p.m.) A West Michigan is dead man after falling through thin ice. Authorities say it's a real-life warning on what warm temperatures can do. Forty-five year-old Douglas Clark from Lowell died when he fell into Grattan Township's Byrne Lake Friday.
 
Neighbors first heard Clark's cries for help, but by the time rescue crews could reach him, the wind, ice, and water proved to be too much. 

Also on Friday, in Cass County, Scott Rozeboom was on the ice and ended up in a similar situation.

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2005 Wisconsin Stern Steerer Association Regatta

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Notice of Regatta

2005 Wisconsin Stern Steerer Association Regatta
January 08-09, 2005
Location: To Be Announced
The 2005 Annual Championship Regatta is tentatively scheduled for January 8th and 9th, 2005 (Alternate January 15th & 16th).  More information will be available after 1:00 PM on January 2, 2005. Call either (414) 520-1190 or (414) 559-6503.   more...


 



Sailing  SNOW  

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"Wicked Fast Ice.."

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Even though we won't be sailing on Lake Monona this weekend, here's a picture that shows the effects of the ice being buffed by warm weather.   Photo Credit: Ron Rosten

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Coast Guard promotes ice safety

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DOLLAR BAY - U.S. Coast Guard officials blame complacency and carelessness for most ice rescue cases involving snowmobiles.

The U.S. Coast Guard's Ninth District offices of Public Affairs and Search and Rescue, based in Cleveland, Ohio, are working together to promote ice safety measures as a prevention technique in saving lives for the 2005 ice rescue season.

To help promote prevention, the public affairs office has created a slogan to help inform the public. It reads, "Ice: a clear, solid risk."

According to the U.S. Coast Guard Web site, the Ninth District employs nearly 7,000 active duty, reserve, auxiliary and civilian members. The district includes two air stations, two air facilities, five group offices, eight marine safety offices, 10 cutters and 46 small boat stations.   more...

 



Environment  SNOW  

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Snowkiting Intro

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Snowkiting is a logical winter choice for anyone who enjoys downhill skiing, snowboarding, or kiteboarding. It is also the best way to learn and practice the techniques used in kiteboarding. Because you aren't fighting waves or trying to stand up on a board in the water, snowkiting is much easier to learn as well. Not to mention, you need less wind and can use any wide open, snow covered area to snowkite. Downhill skiers and snowboarders really enjoy the fact that you don't need to drive to a resort and buy a lift ticket every time you want to go out and ride. The fact of the matter is, most of us have stopped going to resorts now that we have discovered just how versatile and enjoyable snowkiting can be.    more...


 



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Snowkiting is the rush of snowboarding but without the mountain

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The Grand Rapids Press

Now that inland lakes are freezing over, cutting-edge snowboarders are looking to the sky. All they need is a steady wind, preferably 15 knots, to really get cooking across the snow and flying high in the air.

No lift tickets required. No standing in line. Just a board, a kite and an open stretch of snow.

"The coolest thing about snowkiting is that you can go by yourself to an open, frozen lake after a snowfall and ride powder all day long," said Brad Knoth of Hudsonville said. "That's a big, big deal. It's what drew me into it."

Snowkiting still is a new sport in West Michigan. Like its sister, kiteboarding, it's all about speed and air. But instead of flying the kite over water, snowkiters look for open land.    more...

 



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Gladwin County man invents snow boat recognized by Time magazine

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BAY CITY, Mich. (AP) — Harry Haney has built a sled that can walk on water.

The 39-year-old's snow boat is a 14-foot custom-made aluminum craft welded into a standard snowmobile. The prototype has been named one of Time magazine's most amazing inventions of 2004.

"I've been fishing a long time," Haney, a seasonal state park ranger from Rhodes, told The Bay City Times for a recent story. "It's just too spooky being on a sled that doesn't float.

"This is a special purpose machine — for people that are scared of the ice."   more...

http://www.snow-boat.com

 



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Snowmobile safety precautions are vital

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At issue: Snowmobile safety.

-- Our view: Wear your helmet, obey speed limits and do not drink and ride.

There was encouraging news this week from the insurance industry: There were 29 snowmobile-related deaths last winter in Michigan, which makes it the safest season in recent years.
 

Last year's relatively low number of fatalities came one year after 45 people died in the 2002-03 season, the deadliest in eight years.

There was one snowmobile fatality in Lenawee County last year, when Jeffrey Lee Hayes, a 39-year-old Clinton resident, went off the road and struck a tree in Franklin Township. Although he wore a helmet, police said alcohol was involved in the accident.  more...


 



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ICE BOATING & GULL LAKE CLUB HISTORY IN MICHIGAN

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The traditional beginning of ice boating is placed in Holland in the middle 1600’s. The first iceboats were actually sailing ships fitted with ice runners. These vessels were used for moving cargo around the bays and canals adjacent to the North Sea. Over the course of time the iceboats original purpose would metamorphosis from a tool of labor to an agile racing machine.

During the past 117 years, Gull Lake has been home for some of the fastest ice yachts in the world. During the year 1886, D.C. Olin of Kalamazoo introduced Ice Boating to Michigan on Gull Lake. Mr. Olin started with the first sail powered craft, and before long, there were several other boats on the lake. It was during the year 1893 that The Kalamazoo Ice Yacht Club was formed. As the story goes: The new iceboat club was an outgrowth of a card-playing club where every kind of card game was played. When it came time to name the iceboats, it was suggested that they be named after the cards.   more...

 



Sailing  SNOW  

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1905 Madison-Style Stern Steerer Finds Home in Minnesota via Lake Geneva

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Vintage iceboat with a historic past is now skimming across White Bear Lake.

If the wind is good and the ice is clear, you may see a piece of history glide by on White Bear Lake, where a group of men sail a century-old ice boat once owned by the Wrigley family of chewing gum fame.

A ride across the ice in the Wrigley, as its owners call it, resurrects the grace and aura of a bygone era.

"It's all about being on a boat that's almost 100 years old and still functioning," said Terry Thompson of Vadnais Heights.

Thompson is one of four owners, along with Mike Parenteau, Bill Reed and Mark Tregilgas of White Bear Lake. All of the men also own the compact fiberglass speedsters more common on Minnesota's frozen waters, but their recent acquisition is a standout.   more...

 



Sailing  SNOW  

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Grand Slam Regatta

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The Four Lakes Ice Yacht Club Grand Slam Regatta is tentatively scheduled for January 1-2, 2005 somewhere in the Madison area. Because of the unusually warm weather forecast, final announcement will be made at noon on Friday, December 31.

The 2005 Wisconsin Stern Steerers Association newsletter and the official entry form for the Hearst and Stuart are now.  more...

 

 

 



Sailing  SNOW  

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Rescue on a Ice Floe

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Ice fishing on Saginaw Bay has been a way of life for area fishermen for over 150 years. We have heard news reports during the winter of fishermen getting caught on the ice in a "white out", losing sight of land and spending a night on the ice. It is also a little heart wrenching to see your car or truck go through the ice.

A few years ago I was on the ice, walking behind three ice fishermen who were about 100 feet in front of me. They were walking side by side carrying some tackle and pulling a couple of small sleds. The snow was blowing very hard across the surface of the ice on this cold and windy Saturday morning. As I looked ahead, the fellow in the middle dropped through the ice like a "lead balloon". How could this have happened? The snow blowing over the surface had covered up a three feet by three feet hole where a fish shanty had been a few hours before. The man went in up to his neck and was lucky to have immediate help in getting out of the hole. That's what I call a bad day on the ice. There are also other ways to have a bad day on the ice!   more...

 



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Early ice tempting, but dangerous

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MARQUETTE - Recent warm temperatures haven't deterred ice fishing enthusiasts from the tip-up prime time that occurs at the beginning of the season.

Although the surface is mushy, anglers have confidence there is plenty of ice on inland lakes to support a person, if not yet a vehicle or heavy shanty.

"The cold nights and cold days we had before Christmas stiffened 'er up pretty good," said Ernie Lindsey, co-owner of Wilderness Sports in Ishpeming.

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DNR cracks down on ice-shanty identification

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PhotoWith subzero temperatures in December creating acres of frozen water, many ice fishermen on Anchor Bay are preparing for a successful winter fishing season.

State and local authorities are reminding them what to do now and at the end of the season -- label ice shanties and get them off the ice when it starts to melt.

About a half-dozen shanties are abandoned on northern Lake St. Clair at the end of each season, said Ron Pinson, state Department of Natural Resources conservation officer.

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Rangers warn people not to adventure onto shelf ice

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PORTER | It is lovely, but potentially deadly.

You almost expect to see penguins among the carved arches and mesas of shelf ice along Lake Michigan's southern shoreline, but the formations are only for looking, not touching, officials warn.

"It doesn't freeze as solid as it looks," said Cliff Goins, public programs coordinator for the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.

Shelf ice forms when winds from the north push waves up against Lake Michigan's southern shore. Breaking waves and spray freeze in frigid air temperatures, creating irregular ice formations.
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