Part of the beauty of YouTube is that you can find content covering just about anything. Sometimes, you run across something that you just can’t help but hook your peepers onto. A boat out on Lake Minnetonka, Minnesota didn’t get pulled out of the water before the lake froze over. The recovery operation is going over 16 hours strong and I can’t stop watching.
The YouTuber at the helm of the live streams, Turbine Guy, doesn’t give us much context about what’s happening, so I did some digging. The boat is a 58-foot 1970 Chris Craft Roamer Riviera.
It’s known to locals as the Sea Note II, a former charter yacht for a yacht club of the same name.
The boat has been sold a couple of times since 2020, with the most recent buyer picking it up at the end of the season. Previously, the boat was lifted out of the lake using a large boat hoist. Our host says that the local marina doesn’t want to deal with the boat anymore, so the new owner is getting it out of the lake both far too late and the hard way.
My first reaction was a little bit of shock. I’ve been to Lake Minnetonka this year and it’s not too far from me. I’m not ready for snow cover and frozen lakes just yet!
In the first stream the boat took about 30 minutes to reach the dock after tearing through ice that is said to be up to six inches thick.
On arrival, someone can be heard saying that the boat has a hole in it. It’s said that the bilge pumps are running non-stop to try to keep up with the water coming in. The first stream ends with a semi truck showing up with the custom trailer and reversing down the boat ramp.
According to a former for sale ad for the vessel, it displaces 90,000 pounds of water. It’s a heavy beast even without water in its hull. In the second stream, the boat was pulled onto the trailer with the help of a tow truck, but there wasn’t much care taken with the straps.
About three hours in, a strap hooked up to a tow truck snapped with a number of people in its path.
The police also took interest in the recovery, ensuring the operation has a permit before it continues. But by the end of the second stream, by golly the boat was actually mostly on the trailer.
Day three and six hours into the stream and things were just as wild as Wednesday.
Thursday, they tried to inch the boat along using a come along attached to a piece of lumber. They managed to get the boat mostly onto the trailer, but now the truck needs recovery on its own. As of now, the video shows the boat on the truck and a tow truck hooked up to pull the whole rig out.
The whole thing is a bit silly and at times, horribly unsafe. The crowd isn’t keeping their distance from straps already shown to snap. And I’m not the only one that can’t stop watching. The boaters of the Hull Truth are right there. So if you need a stupid time sink, this is it. Who knows what’s going to happen next!
Correction: December 20, 2021: Local marina Tonka Bay Marina has contacted me to say that our host and other locals got a couple of facts wrong. The current owner did not buy the boat at the end of the season but in June. Previously, the boat was removed from the water not with with a hoist, but with an appropriately-sized A-frame trailer.