We still have one venue in play about an hour north of Madison that reportedly survived last night’s weather quite well. The snow was absorbed into the moisture on the surface and has frozen on top of the 5” of original ice. It has not formed into shell ice, but the surface is reported to be somewhat pebbly. Even now, the new layer of ice is solid under the footsteps of a 200+ lb. walker. Temperatures will be in the teens this evening, which should further firm things up. The sheet will be inspected and sailed tomorrow by a highly experienced racer and ice checker. There’s potential for a small amount of rain/show (less than 1”) on Friday. Weekend wind forecast looks very good—10-20 mph both days.
Presently, there doesn’t appear to be any other sailable ice in the region. The long-range forecast does not look favorable for forming new ice on the many lakes that returned to a liquid state or have yet to freeze. This venue will not be available to the DNs the weekend of Jan. 11-12, and after that, we are bumping up against our North American Championship, the Gold Cup, and also the Northwest and ISA for sailors who also race in other fleets. If we postpone, we’re likely off until March, and at that point, we may not get it in at all. SO, if we can make it happen this weekend with acceptable conditions, we’ll likely go for it.
That’s what we know for now. Be ready!
Western Region Rear Commodore