This morning dawned clear, always appreciated in winter here in the Pacific Northwest, so I decided to take a drive through the wheatlands to see what the ice on Sprague Lake might look like. And it seemed foolish to travel that distance without Scooter, just in case. Halfway there I drove into a massive fog bank that persisted til I arrived at the ramp, where I could see to the southwest, what appeared to be approaching clearing. The ice was a mottled grey, and looked punky, a distinct possibility since we've had rain and temps in the high thirties for days. But it dropped well below freezing last night, and the surface was hard, if grainy. I strap on the blades and set out to inspect. The sun begins to reassert itself, a faint breeze begins to develop, and the ice is thick enough, though justbarely. I return to the ramp and commence to assemble the machine.
I have remembered most everything needed, and can fudge the missing bits. I push off into very light zephyrs, getting short rides but grinding to a halt in the lulls. But the sunshine is glorious, I've got the lake to myself, and this lovely new toy is whispering promises to me. I stick with it for about an hour, occasionally returning for some tuning or fussing, and the breeze gradually builds to about 10 mph, which is enough to hook up solidly and drive Scooter into the thirties. This allows me to cover some ground, and I carefully expand my territory. The boat feels great, I'm a happy fellow, and the glee continues for over an hour, til it just stops. Now. I'm not far from the put in, I walk her back, and strap on the skates again, and in dead calm sunshine, I proceed to have the sweetest gliding session I've ever had. Somehow I found my groove, the strides felt effortless and liquid, and I covered more miles than I've ever done before, truly magical.
Impending sunset finally urges me back, and it becomes apparent that there's no more pressure coming, so I load up and motor home in the dying light, smiling inwardly that another glee machine has found it's way into the stable. Just need more ice and air........
Dave of Spokane