Today the historic Steamboat Minnehaha
operates on Lake Minnetonka.

If you travel 12 miles west of Minneapolis, Minnesota on a Saturday or Sunday and sit on the banks of Lake Minnetonka chances are you will spot a big yellow wooden boat gliding along with passengers between Excelsior and Wayzata, sometimes taking a spin around Big Island. If you listen you might hear her mighty steam whistle blow. Chances are you won't hear or smell her engines, she operates with a very quiet, almost odorless, two ton, triple expansion, steam engine.

You might wonder about her design, her color or her strange hull shape and if you take a peek inside you will notice the woven cane seats and skillfully crafted windows similar to those found in streetcars.

Why would anyone put a hull on a streetcar?

If you walk off her length you will find her to be 70 feet long and looking across her beam you'll find she is approximately 15 feet wide. But a fact you may not so easily come up with is her displacement - 62,000 pounds!

What an amazing design as she slices through the water so efficiently, keeping her passengers calm even in choppy waters.


It wasn't always that way...
...for over 50 years she lay on the bottom of the lake.




continue with story...arrow