Ice Sailing in Nova Scotia

5 02 2009

Nova Scotia is surrounded by sea and has a vast number of Lakes, making  all water sports a major part of life here. Sailing, kayaking, canoeing, speed boating, wind surfing, surfing, kite surfing, water skiing, jet skiing, wake boarding, parasailing, rafting and fishing are just some of the activities you can participate in here.

However, once the sea and the lakes freeze, it becomes impossible to move in the water and so you have to consider moving on the water.

Ice sailing,  or ice yachting is the sport where your boat becomes a sledge and is propelled by the wind in the  sails, just as a yacht moves in the water.

Ice sailing began in Holland in the 18th century as a means to transport goods over frozen lakes and spread as a sport to America and Canada.

We were just on a trip around Rose Bay here near Lunenburg, when we caught sight of these two yachters. Rose Bay is part of the sea, but in winter it freezes over and obviously the ice is thick enough here for these lads.


The yachts were moving quickly and the runners made plenty of noise on the ice. I have read that ice yachts can travel at 85 to 90 miles an hour.

I have just been reading about the Nova Scotia Ice Yacht Club and will add the article here ………

Iceboating In Nova Scotia

Welcome to the Nova Ice Yacht Club. Our iceboat members are distributed all over the province of Nova Scotia, some even come from Prince Edward Island. Ice conditions in this area of the world are great.  We have a constant weather change from snow to rain and mild to cold which gives us exceptional ice. The province is littered with both large and small lakes, giving us a variety of sailing seasons.  The small lakes freeze early but are also covered by early season snow while the larger lakes freeze later and generally receive less snow and last until late in the spring sailing season.

This picture below was on their site and I wonder if you can spot the yacht I photographed at Rose Bay?


Here is another photo I got from an Ice Sailing site. I think with the blue sky these yachts could be on a beach in the Bahamas.


Will I try ice sailing? I think I’d better learn to sail first!

If you want to see some action, here are a couple of videos of ice yachts.

Please add your comments if you think this looks fun or even if you think this is a stupid sport.




One response

7 02 2009
Anne Logie

I think it would be great for the young.For me it makes me dizzy just looking.

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