May 8, 2023: What’s Left?

Boaters may have abruptly gone from wondering, “Where can I get to?” to “Where’s the ice?”

Wet windy weather has wiped out huge amounts of ice, including not just exposed expanses, but also sheltered areas.

For instance: the ice road between Treaty Island and Rogers Island that triggered the first forays of Ice Patrol decades ago has melted away. Keith and Linda Nelson were able to reach their camp yesterday, reporting that they  found only a little remnant of ice in a quiet corner of a little back bay. They went through Devil’s Gap after going the long way around Coney Island because the floating bridge is still in place. Last I heard, it was slated to come out tomorrow.

But what really blew me away was a comment from Minnie Thompson that ‘LOW was clear.’ I emailed her to ask what part of the lake she had seen, and her reply was:

Looking from the south shore by Morris Point
we can see water as far as we can see. 
There is also a North wind.

That’s pretty stunning news. Morris Point is close to the southernmost part of Lake of the Woods, and it should offer an unimpeded view of Big Traverse Bay. That north wind would be significant, too, as it would likely push the any loose floating ice ashore on Morris Point and the surrounding areas. Minnie didn’t mention seeing any of it. Could it all have melted, or gone somewhere else?

I wasn’t able to look at yesterday’s weather for Warroad, but the Weather Network does have ‘last 24 hours’ data for Morson. Their wind was mostly east yesterday, occasionally backing to north east, so the ice might have been pushed into Muskeg Bay, by Warroad.

Today’s weather will rule out satellite imagery, and it won’t be very nice for flying, either.



Can you see any any ice today? What does it look like?

Don’t worry, your comment will be public, but your email address will only be seen by me. You cannot send a picture using the comments form, but if you have one, say so in the message box, and I’ll get back to you.

If you have news from other parts of the lake, you’re welcome to comment, too.

While we’re waiting for the internet to work its magic, here are a couple of pictures from Byron Byron who watched the ice go out in Poplar Bay.

Candled ice on Poplar Bay, May 6, 2023.

Byron didn’t mention it, but if you’re that close, the sound of candled ice crystals clinking and tinkling against each other is amazing, something like wind chimes.

The very next morning, yesterday, it was all gone.

Poplar Bay, May 7, 2023.

Thanks, Byron.

Signs of spring:

  • Not one, but two float-planes have appeared at the Kenora seaplane base.
  • Grass is now green.
  • More of out-of-province licence plates can be seen. (Welcome back!)



4 thoughts on “May 8, 2023: What’s Left?

  1. Good Morning,
    I am saying Bigstone Bay is pretty much ice free as of May 8th.,2023
    Other than some ice between the docks, no ice visible in Bigstone from Smith Camps.

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