January 31, 1855

in Thoreau’s Journal:

A clear, cold, beautiful day. Fine skating. An unprecedented expanse of ice.

At 10 A. M., skated up the river to explore further than I had been….

By noon, though it was a pretty cool day, the water had generally burst through and overflowed the ice along the shore and once more stood at a level there; i. e., water and ice made a level where the ice was uneven before. Before skating up-stream I tried my boat-sail on the meadow in front of the house and found that I could go well enough before the wind, resting the mast on my hip and holding by the middle with one hand, but I could not easily tack.