Sailboat used for cruises, charters pulled out of Lake Tahoe after taking damage (Updated 1/9) |

Sailboat used for cruises, charters pulled out of Lake Tahoe after taking damage (Updated 1/9)

Griffin Rogers
A tow truck pulls the Woodwind II out of Lake Tahoe at the Cave Rock boat launch Wednesday.
Griffin Rogers / Tahoe Daily Tribune |

UPDATE: The Woodwind II was destroyed Thursday, one day after salvage crews pulled the storm-damaged sailboat out of Lake Tahoe.

The Tahoe Daily Tribune first reported on the catamaran’s troubles Wednesday. Since then, the yacht has been torn apart, according to Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park, which closed Cave Rock boat ramp for the day while the vessel was destroyed.

Parks Supervisor Jay Howard said the Woodwind II had to be destroyed due to insurance and coast guard permitting issues. Allegedly, the sailboat couldn’t be insured after taking damage in a December windstorm.

The original story published Wednesday is below:

The Woodwind II, a sailboat custom built for excursions on Lake Tahoe, was pulled from the water by tow truck today after sustaining damage in a fierce December windstorm.

The 55-foot-long catamaran was allegedly damaged after breaking away from its mooring in harsh weather and washing up on rocks in the area, according to a Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park official.

The extent of the damage is unknown at this time, as the yacht’s owner, Zephyr Cove-based Tahoe Cruises, could not immediately be reached for comment. However, salvage crews had to use inflatable devices in the water just to move the vessel to the Cave Rock boat launch, where it was subsequently pulled out of Lake Tahoe.

Nevada State Parks accommodated the extraction by temporarily closing what is possibly the only public boat ramp open on the lake and removing the dock for a short period of time.

Jay Howard, parks supervisor at Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park, said it may have been the second time an incident like this has happened to a Woodwind vessel. He thinks the first Woodwind also broke away from its anchor and received damage, leading to its replacement: Woodwind II.

Woodwind II can carry up to 50 passengers, is 28,000 pounds, is capable of sailing at over 20 knots and has a mast that is 64 feet tall, according to the company’s website.

It offers public sailing excursions from April 15 through Oct. 15.

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