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ice yachting on the hudson

More than 100 years ago, people regularly congregated at the Hudson River for winter entertainment and recreation. It was not uncommon to see thousands of people gather on the frozen river for carnivals of music, dancing, food, skating and, most thrilling, ice yacht races.

The enthusiasm for the sport a century ago is not surprising, given that the boats could reach speeds well above that of the trains running along the river.

The sepia-toned era of winter sports on the Hudson is largely dead, not because of advances in home entertainment or newer extreme sports, but mainly because of a pattern of warmer winters, the river simply doesn’t freeze over as often or as deeply as it once did. The long seasons of yesteryear, with dozens of ice yachts and large crowds of onlookers, has turned into the occasional weekend outing, with a small but dedicated group of enthusiasts keeping history alive.

(via: the new york times)

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