Ice Hunting

The ice is melting.  Of course that’s a fine thing, for one wanting to travel by water to the far north.  But something I will miss is the free ice for my cooler.  I just reach down from the trampoline and scoop in out of the lake, but now I have to go ice hunting. 

I sailed Madeline Island on the west side and turned east between her and Michigan Island.  Wind was Northwest at 15 kts so the course was direct for Black River.  The day was sunny and almost warm, warm being a relative term here in April.  But alas the wind died and I motored.  If you expect me to be a purest and sail every last mile, your expectations will be a disappointment.  I’m a traveler as well as sailor and motion is important to a traveler.  So I came into the exquisite little harbor known as the Black River.   There was only one fishing boat, THE THREE SUNS, beautiful in spite of her age, rust and storm tossed life on the lake, a beauty not needing teak trim or even a smooth paint job, but beauty  none the less.  Beautiful as hard honest work is beautiful that speaks without pretence “I am what I am”.  I took a lot of pictures of her.    

I tie up then off to hunt for, you guessed it, ice.  Along the shore was the remnant of the very ice that had held me back from Bayfield and the Apostle Islands only two weeks ago.  The ice was filled with the gravel and sand it must have picked up being pushed up on the shore by the wind and I’m reminded it was ice that made the lakes to start with.   But today I only want enough to cover the bottom of my cooler.  There is something immensely satisfying about picking up a much needed item from nature’s bounty for free.  Ok, it was no free lunch, but free ice to keep a rather inexpensive lunch eatable, is a good thing, don’t you think?   Too late for the milk, though.

Lat 46 degrees 40.0 minutes N ~ Long 090 degrees 02.9 minutes W.  Traveled 36 nautical miles today and 383 so far.




5 Responses to “Ice Hunting”

  1. Tommy:
    We are enjoying so much keeping up with your wanderings. It is an honor to be in your loop! And we just feel so connected to Capt. Lem with all this. He is so proud of you, of that I am sure! Keep up the good work, stay safe and have fun! We will keep checking on you.
    P.S. Pepe says hello too. We are down in FL this week, at Palm Beach, and every time we cross one of those bridges over the waterway we can just imagine the Tony and Donna on her many voyages down this way.

  2. Dan Connolly says:

    Wow—now you put on some mileage–good to see you found open water for a change. Madeline Island is beautiful.

  3. Peter Lee says:

    Nice adventure, I am reading and following along.
    I request that you might tell what kind of anchor your using, bridle or no bridle. How you keep warm at night I am from Florida so we would like to know these things in case one day we venture into cold climate areas. I am also interested in your adventure as I have an aft cockpit 1998 F31 and will be looking for any good ideas and problems related to the boat.

  4. tommy says:

    It’s way too early for me to be giving advice on f-boats. Lot’s of good info on the f-boat chat page at yahoo. Most likely you already have it.
    I use a danforth anchor with 20′ of chain then three strand line. I use a mooring line to hold it out away from the bow and the bobstay and it then acts like a bridle and checks some but not all of the swing. So far so good. I carry a Delta plow type anchor as a spare but have not used it as of yet.

    Thanks for your questions, tommy

  5. Dread Pirate Roberts says:


    Back from the arduous duty of holding my new grandson. Glad to see you are enjoying the trip and making great progress. (I don’t mean just miles.)

    Your comments about duct tape and Red Green reminded me of a statement Red used to make that I have adopted as a sort of byline: “If the women can’t find you handsome, at least they can find you handy.” I really liked that show!! Lots of funny wit and wisdom.

    Any way good sailing and I hope to talk to you soon.

    Dread Pirate sends