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Ice sailing - for those who can't fly to the Caribbean

by Des Ryan on 11 Jan 2011
North Shrewsbury Ice Boat & Yacht Club prepares .. .

They do it in Canada, they do it in Norway. They do it in America and they even do it in Iceland. But it has to be good conditions to last long, and the further south you are, the more caution is needed, if you don't want to end up swimming (or worse) instead of sailing.

In New Jersey this week the word is out, that there's sailable ice on the Navesink River in New Jersey.


So if you go down to the ice today, you'd be in for a big surprise, as there's a handful of determined ice sailers preparing their vessels for an outing from the North Shrewsbury Ice Boat & Yacht Club.

According to local news outlet www.redbankgreen.com!redbankgreen, this is the first time this season that the vessel that serves as the Borough of Red Bank’s official logo image has returned to the frozen river. That wouldn't have happened without the determination by the North Shrewsbury Ice Boat & Yacht Club’s safety committee that sailing was safe.

According to a recording on the club’s 'iceline,' the committee determined that there was sailable ice beneath about an inch of compacted snow Sunday morning.

But with safety the first priority, many precautions were taken. A line of Christmas trees was laid out, and sailers were cautioned to stay south of it.

In addition, orange cones were arranged to show a safe passage to a large plate of ice to the east.

On Monday, www.redbankgreen.com!redbankgreen found temporary rear commodore Dan Clapp of Fair Haven and a handful of other iceboaters preparing for their first sail of the season.

'We heard they were sailing, so we said, let’s give it a try,' Clapp said.

To this tropical sailor, it sounds cold and it sounds dangerous. But it does go to show that just because it's winter in a cold country, there's no need to give up sailing - and you don't have to go to the Caribbean to do it!

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