Our Story

Preserving & Repairing Antique & Classic Wood Boats

Arriving in 1970 to begin our teaching careers and grow our family, my wife and I bought four acres and a dilapidated circa 1826 house in Addison, Vermont. Putting four sheep on the land offered the “perfect” solution for keeping it open. Well, four soon became 30, trying to eke an existence on way too little land.

The solution was obvious: Buy land and build our own place, which we did, and in October 1976, we moved into our brand new colonial saltbox sitting on 93 acres of land. We cleared the land, built a barn and figured we were all set.

The sheep had other ideas. Those thirty-odd sheep did what comes naturally, and before our eyes, the flock doubled and then doubled again.

In 1979 we built the 42′x80′ barn that now houses Snake Mountain Boatworks. By 1990, with our lives moving in other directions, the flock was sold and those barns stood empty until 2009, when what would become Snake Mountain Boatworks began rising out of the big barn’s dirt floor. The sheep, hay, and all else that farming means have been replaced by 5,000 square feet of superb preservation space…

About Michael Claudon

Retiring from teaching at Middlebury College has enabled Claudon to create his latest entrepreneurial endeavor, Snake Mountain Boatworks LLC. SMB preserves and repairs antique and classic wooden powerboats in 5,000 square feet of shop that had previously served as the main barn for the commercial sheep operation that he and Shirley, his wife of 53 years, ran from 1976-1990.

Restoring, preserving and repairing these majestic watercraft is so much like doing the same for clocks, albeit on a footprint that is hundreds of times larger. Blessed with his crew of able experts, Claudon is again feeding his passion for trading, for preserving old things, and for meeting and bringing enjoyment to wonderful people… (READ MORE >)