From wars to watersports, Lake Champlain is steeped in history.
Directly outside the front door of the Community Sailing Center lies several hundred years’ worth of history, as Lake Champlain has experienced waves of human activity that have shaped its waters and shores. Before European settlers arrived in the early 1600s, local Abenaki tribes fished pristine waters surrounded by nothing but mountain views. After serving as a naval battleground during the war of 1812, Burlington Bay became a gritty industrial hub with factories and raw material companies turning the lake into a busy shipping highway laden with goods and people destined for points north and south. Factories gave way to oil refineries with underwater pipelines and massive storage tanks dotting the shallow waters for several miles.
Today, Lake Champlain is calmer. The horizon is flecked with not steamers, but sailboats. Burlington Bay’s primary industry has become recreation, with plenty of places to swim, bike along the path, paddle, explore underwater shipwrecks, fish, and enjoy sunsets. We’re proud to have helped the people of Burlington get re-acquainted with all the adventure and respite this storied lake has to offer for the past 20 years, and are excited to be a strong presence in the future of Lake Champlain.