I’m going to start with two pictures that are a couple of days old, and then show how things are changing. Bigstone Bay is one of the last places on Lake of the Woods to have ice. I’m not sure why, but this is true year after year. Perhaps there’s not much current.
You can click on the pictures to see them full-screen. That version can be zoomed.
Except the satellite image. Kenora’s Round Lake is about the smallest thing the MODIS cameras can show you, and trying to zoom in will just make it worse.
The first two pictures are from Al Smith, operator of Smith Camps on Thunder Bay.
Still a good extent of ice in this picture from sunset on Tuesday evening.
Eagle pass is the water route around the east end of Hay Island. Al says it looks to be ice free from Route Bay through to Moore Bay.
Now some drone photographs from today, with thanks to Michael Tomashowski.
The west end of Longbow looks open, but zoom in to get a better look at the ice in the more distant east half of the lake.
Michael has operated a DJI Mavic Pro since 2017. Thanks, Michael.
NASA’s Terra Satellite got a clear view of Lake of the Woods today. Here’s the false-colour image.
The bright blue patch at the left is ice on Shoal Lake; it’s shrinking day by day. Less easy to spot is the ice on Bigstone. Near the north end of Lake of the Woods, look for a sizeable island shaped like a battered battle-axe, chopping downward: that’s Hay Island. Just north of it, a dim patch of blue is the thin ice remaining on Bigstone. Longbow Lake is just north of that, but the ice there is not visible to the satellite’s camera. Too thin and waterlogged, I expect. If there’s any ice remaining south of the Barrier Islands, I can’t see it.
Lake of the Woods Ice Patrol has seen a sharp reduction in web visitors this spring, to about half of recent years. Fair enough. Many visitors won’t be able to come in the early part of spring. Also, my being laid off from my flying job for three months (because of the pandemic) has meant that there have been far fewer aerial photographs this year, and that some areas have had much less coverage. Sorry about that.
But there have been pluses: I’ve had a lot more guest contributors this year. Many have taken the time to email me photographs to share with you. Some have made multiple flights in their small planes, and for the first time, I’ve been able to feature drone photography.
Despite the problems, it’s been gratifying to be able to do this blog while grounded. I never dreamed I’d get this much help. Thank you all.