Cruising Iceboat in Finland

Published on April 5th, 2017

Motor homes and cruising sailboats fulfill our quest for adventure, but most people pack it up when the leaves fall from the trees. However, iceboaters aren’t like most people as Bill Buchholz notes in this report.


Last winter when we sailed day after day on Moosehead Lake in Maine, a couple of guys began toying with the idea of lashing camping gear to the iceboats and setting of for a camping cruise of the lake.

Of course, after a drink in front of the fire at the Birches Lodge they saw life a bit differently. But a couple in Finland have seemed to have it all figured out.

They had been out for a week when DN and Monotype sailor Mats Loftsberg met them on the ice. The cozy cabin sleeps two, and the skunners will cross most cracks easily, while the fuselage actually floats. Mats says the yacht is made of wood, but the people are made of steel!

They are cruising this archipelago in the Gulf of Bothnia, near the city of Jacobstad. It takes a geography like this, Moosehead Lake or Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire to make sense of an activity like this, but imagine the fun.

Maybe a fire ashore in the evening, a little ice fishing, and long days of mellow sailing. Who knows what they do if it snows; maybe one of those Jack Jacobs chain saw drives would get them home.

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