April 19, 2016: Changes

Some rain fell over the weekend, although not as much as expected. Now we’ve had a couple of days of warm weather, so it’s time for an update.

Let’s begin with Longbow Lake.

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Longbow Lake

This photograph of Longbow is cropped from a bigger picture, but you can still click on it to see a larger version. If you do, you’ll see that the ice is looking weak and dark, especially in the distance at the west end.

Next, Bigstone Bay and Hay Island.

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Hay Island, Pipestone Peninsula.

At first glance, you might see only ice, but on Andrew Bay (at the left in the middle distance) that ice is getting dark. If you zoom in on the part of the picture above the center, you can see an expanse of water between Allie Island and Mather Island, where the current flows strongest through the Barrier Islands. That patch has grown a lot in the last few days.

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Hay Island, Middle Island, Scotty Island.

We swung the plane north to take a look at Middle Island and beyond it, Scotty Island. Here, too, you can see dark ice, and there’s more open water by Town Island.

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Town Island.

Keewatin Channel is wide open now, and water is lapping at Town Island, extending to Anchor Island and almost reaching Copeland Island, off the nose of the King Air.

Last, a look at the area south of Devil’s Gap.

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Shragges Island, Treaty Island, Rogers Island, Galt island.

Partly hidden by the dashboard of the plane is a big patch of open water by Shragges Island.  South of Devil’s Gap, water reaches as far as the north tip of Galt Island now. In the distance, beyond Treaty Island, you can see the ice darkening around Gun Club Island.

So far, so good. Ten days ago, the forecast called for double-digit highs for the rest of April. If the forecast still called for a week of warm weather, I’d be optimistic. Sadly, the latest forecasts are not so rosy; now they say we might be looking at cooler weather for a bit. Normal highs this time of year are around 12°C, but we might see temperatures staying below 9° until the end of the month, with overnight lows dipping to just below freezing. If that’s so, we might be into May before all the ice is gone.

One local guy put it like this: “We didn’t have winter, why should we have spring?” Be strong, Lake Dwellers. Maybe the forecast will change again.

2 thoughts on “April 19, 2016: Changes

    • Ptarmigan is looking a bit darker, but not like it’s going right away. Haven’t been able to get as far as Rush Bay or Ash Rapids yet, but I’ll try when things have progressed more. Shoal Lake usually goes out later than Lake of the Woods.

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