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Progress report, first from Vladimir Brezina, of Windagainstcurrent.  In Vlad’s words, “I did see Ceres, motoring down the Hudson past Stockport Middle Ground, where we were camping, just a few minutes fter sunrise yesterday (Monday). At first I couldn’t believe that it was Ceres—she wasn’t sailing (there was no wind, but wouldn’t a PROPER sailing barge just wait for the wind?) and making quite a racket for an eco-friendly boat… “

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At first Vlad feared they gotten out for fotos too late.  Here’s more on Stockport Middle Ground.

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After these fotos were taken, Ceres stopped in Hudson.

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The following fotos taken yesterday come from Michael Kalin, who writes,  “North Germantown Reach. My wife & I launched from North Germantown Landing 10AM, paddled to Catskill, around Rogers Island, ate lunch, went back, lost hope, took out, looked upriver one more time and there she was!”

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Thanks much to Vlad and Michael for these fabulous fotos.

The next fotos of Ceres I hope show full-bellied sails!   Click here for more on VSFP.

So here’s a prime example of a sixth boro delight.  No, THAT inspector is not immersed in the sixth boro!  But the object of the inspection sailed into the East River last year in late August from the Sound and then out again heading north, up the Hudson River.  Note the place and date on this foto, which I borrowed from Richard Hudson’s Issuma blog.  Click here if you don’t know (like me) where the “Dolphin and Union Strait” is located.

I took this foto of Issuma last October just off the Rondout, where Issuma anchored.  Who would have guesed that Issuma, one year on, would be NORTH of Whitehorse!

Here’s another from that same morning.  Another schooner . . . Rosemary Ruth . .  was buddied up alongside.

This foto, also from Richard’s blog, shows the exact date.

So how does one get a 50′ schooner from the Rondout to the Yukon is less than a year?   Some thoughts come to mind:  very large truck, a C-17, squadrons of helicopters . . .  or by just sailing it through the northwest passage, doing what a namesake failed to do some 400 years back!

Congratulations to Richard Hudson and his crew, who on Columbus Day 2010 poured me a distinctly tropical drink on Issuma, docked in Long Island City, Queens.  Cheers.  I trust you passed the mustachioed one’s inspection gloriously.

This holy grail of sail is the Van Nostrand Cup, crafted by Tiffany in 1888 at the behest of  Gardiner Van Nostrand, “held since 1891 by the North Shrewsbury Ice Boat and Yacht Club,” put up for competiton only once (1978)  since then.     Getting it back is tricky.  Races can only happen when waters are frozen;  you need good ice, though, not just any ice.  You need wind but not too much.  Last Saturday winds gusted to 50 mph, and then Sunday . . . in spite of this beautiful ice … puffs happened only sporadically.   And with good wind, how fast can they go?  Answer follows.

John Vargo, here with a formidable hat made of skins of two Great Plains coyotes, talks about the sport as

over on the far side of this lake (which I will refer to as Lake Shangri-la . . . located somewhere between the sixth boro and the St. Lawrence) two old stern-steerers race.  If you haven’t seen bowsprite’s  video of the last run of Galatea from February 2010, click here.

A little over 100 years ago, ice boats like these were THE fastest vehicle on earth!  This youtube video from the 1930s touts the fact that a Chevy can outrun an iceboat, an appeal that seems quite bizarre today.

To me, these vessels seem too beautiful and delicate to be so fast.

Varnish, polished brass, marlinespike are all lovingly cared for on Ariel.

Genevieve is a beauty returned recently from Wisconsin

by Brett, whose passion for iceboats was quite evident.  This type of passion and

obsession one who blogs incessantly of water can easily empathize with.  Wonder why the nameboard looks so untraditional?

Genevieve was built not far from a certain temple of baseball in the Bronx.     Here’s a list of vessels built there, but there’s no mention of their iceboating endeavors.    While we’re on NYYL&E history, check out their Bronx-built Linmar and  Olympus.  Another long-gone Morris Heights-based builder built lightships.

A two-person crew pushes off in light wind  before lying in the basket.

Genevieve’s bigger basket accommodates more crew, more pushers.

Waiting for the wind here from near to far:  Ice Queen, Whirlwind, and Ariel.

Lake Shangri-la beckons; when the wind blows, these boats are eager to bring the Grail back to New York ice.  All fotos by Will Van Dorp, who’s grateful for the hospitality.

For a wide variety of European iceboat images and links, click here.

Ice boat speed records:  Debutaunte . . . 143 mph?    Miss Wisconsin . . .   200 . ..  has it been clocked?

Check out John Vargo’s Boating on the Hudson FaceBook page here.

Welcome home, schooner Anne and Reid Stowe.  (Doubleclick enlarges the fotos.)  Quoth my favorite talking pigeon upon seeing these fotos:  “Na dat fella Reid him make too much gallivant long one.”  Mermaids and seamasters and dolphins and fish armies have decorated the hull nicely, adding outlandish

designs.  Reid waved as excitedly as he did 1152 days ago.   Click that link for NYTimes video and article from yesterday.

A lively breeze  was like music for the weathered schooner, inviting it to dance spritely once more before kissing a dock.

Well-seasoned athletes, these hermits in from over the wet curvature of the earth, maybe over almost everyone’s horizon.

From my vantage, they tacked all the way in;  after all, what other way is there to

return if you’ve moved on the waves and wind so long as well as added so many patches sail upgrades.

And the New York, the sixth boro he returns to has signs about an . . .  air race?!!?  Air race signs in the harbor?  That would be more than enough to befuddle someone even returning from a proverbial  three-hour tour.

And my conveyance, a 125-year-old schooner that raced on the waves at 8.4 knots,

heeling over, scudding before the wind, drinking deeply through the scuppers . . .  well, I’ll post about that tomorrow.

Meanwhile, come to Pier 66 for the party on Sunday night.

Here’s the AP story.  Here and here are posts I did on the interior of Anne three + years ago.

All fotos by Will Van Dorp.

Unrelated but very exciting:  NYHarbor Shipping!! Check it out and leave a comment.

And more from the NYTimes: where NYC families learn to sail . . . on the sixth boro of course.

April 22 2007 . . . schooner Anne heads out for

a very long time.  Goal:  to sail without landfall for 1000 days.    I took this foto several miles outside the Narrows, one of my last of Reid, Soanya, and Anne bound for sea, and I was nervous for them.  Today . . .

Anne returns.  Capt. Mike has already seen the schooner and posted about it here.

More later.

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Graves of Arthur Kill

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My imaginings and bowsprite's renderings of Henry Hudson's trip through the harbor 400 years ago.

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Blue Marlin spent 600+ hours loading tugs and barges in NYC Sixth Boro. Click on image for presentation made to NY Ship Lore and Model Club, July 25, 2011.

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