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Hard Water Season

Michigan Ice Yachting

As the weather cools down, ice sailing/yachting heats up. Although highly weather dependent, most organized ice boating occurs on the Western side of the state on Gull Lake, Elk Lake, Muskegon Lake and Grand Traverse Bay. Other regional action can be found on Cass Lake (Oakland Co.), Wampler's Lake (Jackson Co.) or Lake Saint Clair (Macomb Co.).


Because Michigan winters are sufficiently cold to allow for a thorough freezing of inland lakes, ice boating is popular in the state during the winter months. In fact, one of the more popular iceboat classes is the DN class, designed and named in response to a contest sponsored by the Detroit News in 1937. This boat is essentially a small ice rocket (12 feet long, only 21 inches wide) with a maximum speed of 60 m.p.h. Michigan is home to the International DN Ice Yacht Racing Association, which boasts about 2000 members.

There are some peculiarities to ice boating (ice yachting) which are not seen with “soft water” sailing. First, most iceboats carry a single individual (so the need for crew is removed), however two or more person boats do exist. Second, because of the speeds involved (iceboats in general can travel 5-10x wind speed), ice sailors wear protective gear, including helmets. Third, iceboats do not require standard ramps for launching. And lastly, an intimate knowledge of ice conditions and lake topography is essential for a safer experience (although iceboating cannot be made 100% "safe"). The iceboating season can’t start until snow-free hard ice is established on the lakes, usually after Christmas. Ice-sailing events in general are very condition dependent and may arise or be canceled with short notice for safety reasons. Those interested in iceboating should contact the organizations below for expert advice on sailing conditions, tactics and safety.


Ice Boats for sale on Craigslist

How can we help?

Finding a Boat

Sailing, sailboats, SailMichigan

It begins with a boat. Maybe a ride on a friend's boat, but eventually you will want one of your own. 

Finding a Club

Sailing, sailboats, SailMichigan

Sometime a solitary sail is all you need, but often we want to find others to sail with and share sailing with.

Finding a Lake

Sailing, sailboats, SailMichigan

Some are blessed to live on sailable waters, others of us need to find that perfect lake. Its lucky that Michigan is full of them.

Finding an Event

Sailing, sailboats, SailMichigan

Be it a boat show, sailing open house, sailing class, or regatta, sometimes you just want something to do.

Finding a Charter

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Michigan is blessed to have multiple Tall Ships. All of them offer inexpensive opportunites to experience a sail adventure.

Finding a ........


What are we missing? What else will it take you get you to sail? Let us know and it can be displayed in this catagory!

Finding a boat

Boats available via SailMichigan


Our passion for small boats occassional gets us into the position of rescuing a boat, refurbishing and reselling it.  Watch here for opportunities.

Boats available via Craigslist

Sailboat bought on Craigslist

Craigslist can provide the lowest barrier and cost to obtaining your first boat. There can be great deals, as well as scary offers, here.

Launch Craigslist Search

Boats available via Ebay

1959 Interlake Sailboat in Michigan

Some bargans may be found here, however this is a national market. At any given time only a few boats will be relatively local to you.

Sailboats under 20 feet

Boats available to support a cause


Are you a sailing non-profit? Do you routinely have boats for sale to support your organization? Let us know so we can help.

Support TACS (Traverse City)

Boats from our corporate sponsor

Buccaneer Sailboats by WindRider

Are you a for-profit sailboat dealer and wish to support this site? Talk to us and you can be featured here!

Contact Us

Sponsored boat classified

Small and Large Sailboats for sale from individuals

Are you an individual looking to sell your boat to another good home? Contact us about featuring your boat here!

Contact us
Students sail on Flying Scots at Michigan State

Finding others to sail with

Local Sailing Clubs and Organizations

Alpena Youth Sailing Club  - Alpena (Lake Huron)

American Sailing Institute - Oakland and Macomb Counties (Kent Lake, Lake Saint Clair)

Bay City Yacht Club - Bay City (Saginaw Bay, Lake Huron)

Bay Sail (Sailing Education) - Bay City (Saginaw Bay, Lake Huron)

Tawas Bay Yacht Club  - East Tawas  (Tawas Bay, Lake Huron)

Albatross Yacht Club - Harrison Twp. (Anchor Bay, Lake Saint Clair)

Bark Shanty Sail Club -  Port Sanilac  (Lake Huron)

Barton Boat Club  - Ann Arbor (Barton Pond, Huron River) 

Bayview Yacht Club - Detroit (Detroit River, Lake Saint Clair)

Clark Lake Yacht Club - Clark Lake (Jackson County)

Creekfleet Sail Club - Shelby Twp. (Stony Creek Lake / Stony Creek Metropark)

Crescent Sail Yacht Club - Grosse Pointe Farms (Lake Saint Clair)

Detroit Boat Club - Detroit (Detroit River, Lake Saint Clair)

Detroit Model Yacht Club - Detroit 

Detroit Yacht Club - Detroit (Detroit River - Lake Saint Clair)

Devils Lake Yacht Club - Manitou Beach (Lenawee County)

Grayhaven Sail Club of Detroit - Detroit (Detroit River, Lake Saint Clair)

Ford Yacht Club - Grosse Ile (Detroit River, Lake Erie)

Great Lakes Yacht Club - Saint Clair Shores (Lake Saint Clair)

Grosse Ile Yacht Club - Grosse Ile (Detroit River, Lake Erie)

Grosse Pointe Sail Club - Grosse Pointe Farms (Lake Saint Clair)

Grosse Pointe Yacht Club - Grosse Pointe (Lake Saint Clair)

Huron Pointe Yacht Club - Harrison Twp. (Lake Saint Clair)

Jefferson Yacht Club - St. Clair Shores (Lake Saint Clair)

Lake Fenton Sailing Club - Fenton, MI (Lake Fenton)

Lake Shore Sail Club - St. Clair Shores (Lake Saint Clair)

Lansing Boat Club - Lansing, MI  (Grand River)

Lansing Sailing Club  - Haslett, MI (Lake Lansing)

Mac Ray Yacht Club - Mt. Clemans, MI (Lake Saint Clair)

Michigan Sailing Club - Dexter, MI (Base Line Lake)

Monroe Boat Club Monroe (734) 243-8935

North Cape Yacht Club La Salle (734) 242-5081

North Star Sail Club Harrison Twp.(586) 463-2192

Pontiac Yacht Club Pontiac (248) 682-8020

Portage Yacht Club Pinckney (734) 426-4155 

Port Huron Yacht Club Port Huron(810) 985-9424SE

Saginaw Bay Yacht Club Essexville (989) 892-5905

Saginaw Bay Community Sailing Bay City (989) 922-7245

Swan Boat Club Newport (734) 586-2002

West Shore Sail Club Trenton

Wolf Lake Yacht Club Jackson (517) 522-4211

Wyandotte Yacht Club Ecorse 

Boyne City Yacht Club Boyne City

Burt Lake Yacht Club Brutus

Charlevoix Yacht Club Charlevoix (231) 547-9170

Crystal Lake Yacht Club Frankfort (231) 352-4691

Glen Lake Yacht Club Glen Arbor (231) 334-4013

Grand Traverse Yacht Club Traverse City (231) 946-9779

Leland Yacht Club Leland (231) 256-2681

Little Traverse Yacht Club Harbor Springs (231) 526-7919

Ludington Yacht Club Ludington (231) 843-9904

Pentwater Yacht Club Pentwater (231) 869-8921

Torch Lake Yacht Club Bellaire (231) 377-7829

Traverse Area Community Sailing Traverse City (231) 922-5922

Walloon Lake Yacht Club Walloon Lake

Bayshore Yacht Club Holland (616) 399-9844

Crystal Sailing Club Crystal (989) 235-4065

Diamond Lake Yacht Club Cassopolis (269) 445-3201

Eagle Lake Sailing Club Edwardsburg (269) 699-5820

Grand Rapids Yacht Club Grand Rapids (616) 949-8466

Grand River Sailing Club Grand Haven

Gull Lake Yacht Club Richland (616) 629-9714

Harbour Towne Yacht Club Muskegon (231) 755-4892

Indian Lake Yacht Club Dowagiac

Lake Michigan Yacht Club New Buffalo (269) 469-8100

Macatawa Bay Yacht Club Macatawa (616) 335-5815

Muskegon Yacht Club Muskegon (231) 755-1414

New Buffalo Yacht Club New Buffalo (616) 469-0808

Paw Paw Lake Yacht Club Coloma (616) 468-6300S

River's Edge Yacht Club Grand Haven (616) 846-0408

Saint Joseph River Yacht Club Saint Joseph (269) 983-6393

Saugatuck Yacht Club Saugatuck (269) 857-8665

Singapore Yacht Club Saugatuck (616) 857-2442

South Haven Yacht Club South Haven (616) 637-2305

Spring Lake Yacht Club Spring Lake (616) 847-8322

Tower Harbour Yacht Club Saugatuck-Douglas

White Lake Yacht Club Whitehall (231) 894-4516

Escanaba Yacht Club - Escanaba (Lake Michigan)

Marquette Yacht Club - Marquette (Lake Superior)

M & M Yacht Club - Menominee (Lake Michigan)

Mackinac Island Yacht Club - Mackinac Island (Mackinac straits)

Onigaming Yacht Club - Houghton (Lake Superior)

Learn More

There are over 80 yacht and sailing clubs in Michigan. One or more are bound to be near you. Many of these offer sailing classes and look for volunteers to crew on boats for weekly races. Click on the links to the left to go to their respective sites.

We recommend checking out:

  • American Sailing Institute
  • Creekfleet Sail Club
  • Saginaw Bay Community Sailing
  • Traverse Area Community Sailing
  • Michigan State Univ. Sailing Center

Finding a Tall Ship / Charter



Tours on the Manitou are conducted by the Tranverse Tall Ship Company in Traverse City, MI

Appledore IV

Appledore IV photo by

Appledore IV and V are owned and operated in Bay City, MI by BaySail.


Cutter Champion - image from Maritime Heritage Alliance

The Cutter Champion is owned and operated by the Maritime Heritage Alliance in Traverse City, MI

Inland Seas

Inland Seas, Tall Ship, Sailing, Sailboat

Inland Seas is maintained and sailed by the Inland Seas Education Association in Sutton's Bay (Lake Michigan).

Tall Ship Celebration


2019 is the year the Tall Ship Celebration will again be in Bay City, MI Multiple ships from several countries will be here.

Future Charter Info


Do you offer sailing charters and wish to be featured here. Let us know.

Finding an Event

Events Calender: If you want to promote your sailing event or regatta, contact us.

No upcoming events.

About Us

What Happened?


Since 2009, has endeavored to make entry and enjoyment of sailing easier. If you have visited us before, you will note the change.  As much as we hated to do it, we could not financially support the changes necessary in the old site and had to retire it. We are now recontemplating our naval to see what is possible.

The future?


This is unknown. Will the full functionality of SailMichigan return? Perhaps, but not in the immediate future.

Our Mission


This has not changed. Our mission has always been to lower the barriers to sailing, especially small boat sailing.

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Contact Us

Send us your questions and feedback about this site or general questions about sailing resources in Michigan