In early February of 1998, the team had great plans for their first trip to the ice. Sonic Wind would be put through a series of tests that would include the steering, parachutes,brakes and controllability. Then, if all testing had been satisfactory, they would make two or three low power runs on the ice with the rocket engine pushing Sonic Wind up to speeds of 150 to 200 miles per hour.
They made the trip to Castle Rock Lake in Northern Wisconsin with the hopes of starting the journey to be the fastest vehicle on ice and possibly the fastest land vehicle on Earth.
One little problem arose as soon as they arrived, it was too warm in Wisconsin. The ice just wasn't thick or hard enough to take the weight necessary to do the testing.
After Waldo and his crew had made the trip to Wisconsin, the ice proved to be unsafe, Mother Nature wasn't being too cooperative. With day time temperatures above the freezing mark and the snow melting, winter was rapidly leaving as Sonic Wind arrived at Castle Rock Lake in early February.
Even the local ice fishermen were home bound by the warm temperatures. On a lake known for its winter activities, it had an unusually barren surface with no snowmobiles or ice fishing shanties visible anywhere.
The first trip to the ice for Sonic Wind turned out to be only a photo opportunity, with no testing possible because of the thin ice. It may have been caused by El Nino, like everything else this year, but for whatever reasons, no runs were possible.