Saturday, April 27, 2013

Home stretch for Red Lake's 2013 ice-out

With just three weeks to go before the start of fishing season, this is the home stretch for ice-out on Red Lake, Ontario.
It will take a miracle for all the ice and snow to melt by then, basically above-normal temperatures and ideal wind and rain. But since yesterday, that is just what Red Lake is getting!
The temperature hit 16 C yesterday and is supposed to be something similar today and tomorrow. Even more importantly, it is not predicted to go below freezing at night. There is also some warm rain in the forecast. These are all perfect ice-melting phenomena. There are a few below-normal temp days seen after this weekend but the 14-day forecast then shows above-normal all the way afterward.
Could it melt three feet of ice by May 19? I just don't think it can but here is one thing that might help. If there is a sudden melting of the snow as is happening right now, all the runoff into the lake can lift the ice loose from the shore. It won't make much of a difference right now, but in a few weeks, when the ice thickness has diminished, this factor could help the ice sheet shift back and forth in the wind. If it can shift and there is a strong wind, the ice pack is finished. It can disappear in a day. It can do this even if it is still fairly thick, say 14 inches.
But this is probably just me grasping at straws.
For us at Bow Narrows Camp, I think the best we can hope for is if the ice melts in the narrows where camp is located and in the shallow bays where we fish. If that happens in time then we can fly everybody from the Chukuni River in town over the ice to camp on May 19. Hopefully, the rest of the ice then will breakup before the end of the week. Even that would be miraculous but then, miracles do happen sometimes, don't they?
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