Navigation
  • Protecting Door County’s Beaches

    In an era of growth pressure, private development has dominated the battle for access and control of Door County’s treasured shoreline over the past two decades. But the county’s public officials have mounted a powerful rebuke in recent years, launching an 11th-hour effort to secure and protect the peninsula’s beaches for generations to come. After […]

  • Hanging on the Hook: Moorings 101

    Sailboats swing in Eagle Harbor to a new wind brought up by the break of a new day. Like birds at rest, boats on moorings huddle together in safe harbors tethered to the seafloor. For sailors onboard these vessels and shore-side voyeurs, the picture of sailboats in a haven has been likened to tranquility or […]

  • Stories in the Wreckage

    The cold, mercurial waters surrounding the Door Peninsula are literally legendary. Because they began vanquishing ships long before there were local newspapers to report losses or technology with which to plot locations, much of the havoc they’ve wreaked on maritime travel remains the subject of speculation and fable. Door County’s very name derives from an […]

  • Guarding the Door: The Peninsula’s United States Coast Guard

    Mariners through the centuries have faced the reality of Lake Michigan’s relentlessly changing moods. Violent storms, raging windswept waves, fog, shoals and reefs have ushered ships and their crews to their ice-water graves off the shores of Door County. Those conditions are no less imminent today as they were then; yet, through it all there […]

  • Sail Maker Charlie Klein

    The Dorsal Sail Loft is a place where old world methods meet new world technology. Here, above an old boat yard on the Sturgeon Bay waterfront, Charlie Klein stands above an archaic blueprint of a 40-foot sailboat. His mind is calling upon formulas as he deciphers facts and figures from an age-old era of sail […]

  • Keeping Your Boat and our Water Clean

    Keeping your boat clean means something different to each boater. For some it means rinsing off fish guts after a successful catch, washing away scuff marks from a lively sail, or keeping a yacht detailed to shine. The thing that all boaters have in common is a love for both their craft and being out […]

  • Springtime Kayaking: The “Door” to early season paddling

    There’s a mellow May breeze rustling the reeds and wild rice along Reibolts Creek. Yellow water lilies bob gently in the wake of the boat, and the high whistle of a Blue-winged Teal breaks the stillness of the foggy dawn as the sun rises over Moonlight Bay. A morning like this one is not uncommon […]

  • Taking the Plunge: Choosing the sailboat for you

    Another summer day culminates in the sun sinking over the bay. The setting sun is framed by cumulus, birds in flight, and softer tones of an evening beginning to awake. Sails, too, are on the horizon, seemingly the only human element that could complement the tranquility of twilight – a piece of perfection in your […]

  • Laying Up the Winter Fleet: Bringing Great Lakes Freighters to Port

    “The iron boats go as the mariners all know, with the gales of November remembered.”  – Gordon Lightfoot, Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald The predawn morning is met with a blanket of fog that hangs heavy over the thickening ice of Sturgeon Bay’s outer harbor. Harsh, cold winds pile snow into ripples and drifts across […]

  • Frostbite Sailing

    The fall wears on toward winter, and the signs of the changing season are everywhere. As the days get even shorter, the geese as well as the summertime crowds have mostly moved south. The marinas and harbors are emptier after each weekend. As the temperatures fall and the waters of Green Bay darken, sailors might […]

  • Yachtsmen in Training: The Sturgeon Bay Sail Training Foundation

    Door County’s access to Lake Michigan and the Green Bay waters has afforded the peninsula a rich maritime heritage. A piece of that heritage continues to thrive off the shores of Sturgeon Bay thanks to the Sturgeon Bay Sail Training Foundation. Each summer this organization trains young and old alike to learn and perfect the […]

  • Ephraim Yacht Club: 100 Years

    The summer of 2006 will mark the 100th anniversary of the Ephraim Yacht Club (EYC) and its famous Ephraim Regatta. The Ephraim Regatta is the oldest continuous regatta in the United States and it continues to draw many sailors and enthusiasts to Door County’s shores. July 24th of 1906 was the inception of the charter […]

  • Yacht Works’ Annual Boat Show

    As boat-launching season nears, Yacht Works in Sister Bay is preparing for their 4th Annual Boat Show. This exceptional two-day event takes place over Saturday and Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, May 27th and 28th. Representatives from boat manufacturers Chris Craft, Everglades by Dougherty, and Cranchi will all be present to perform sea trials and […]

  • Evidence of a Fish Story: Charter Fishing in Door County

    I’ve always thought the best way to see Door County was from the water, looking back toward the peninsula. Whether paddling a kayak along the shoreline of Lake Michigan or island hopping aboard a sailboat in Green Bay, there is nothing better than peering at the sandy beaches, rugged bluffs, and quaint villages and being […]

  • Kevin Barta

    Iceboating: Pure Speed

    The scene is late December. Whistling winds breathe freezing temperatures upon the Door County winter landscape yet not a flake of snow has fallen. On a bed of ice from an inland lake a distant thunder may be heard from an oddly shaped craft traveling at a remarkably high speed. To be on the ice […]

  • Palmer Johnson: Building the World’s Finest Yachts

    Back in 1918, a company called Johnson and Gmack was busy building and repairing boats for the Great Lakes commercial fishing fleet. But it wasn’t until 1928, when a man named Palmer Johnson, the founder’s son, built the company’s first wooden pleasure boat that an entirely new era began. Its history has had many chapters […]

  • The Spirit Renewed: Wooden Boat Restoration

    Sturgeon Bay is a boat town and has been ever since the area was settled in the mid-1800s. A trip through the Founder’s Gallery at the Door County Maritime Museum demonstrates the fierce pride this bustling little city of 10,000 has in its maritime heritage to even the most casual observer, and justifiably so. During […]

  • With the Wind: Kiteboarding the County

    When people envision extreme sports, Door County usually is not the backdrop in their brain; however, there is a group of individuals who have rejuvenated the notion of what Door County could be. No longer just the picturesque surroundings for fine dining, art galleries, and antique shops, this crew has found a new vitality in […]

  • Racing Home: Sailing the Hook Race Death’s Door Challenge

    Sailboat racing has brought friends and families together off the shores of the Door Peninsula for nearly a century. And as intriguing and adventuresome as these races are, none can compare to the granddaddy of them all – the Hook Race Death’s Door Challenge. Spanning 197.4 nautical miles, this course pits experienced crews against each […]

  • A Jacksonport Tradition: The Polar Bear Swim

    Winter in Door County brings to mind cross-country skiing, sledding, ice skating and…swimming in Lake Michigan? Usually swimming in the lake is reserved for the summer months, but an exception is made on New Year’s Day as hundreds of people start their year off with a swim in Lake Michigan. If you are up to […]