Yesterday was our warmest day yet, with a high of 11ºC. This produced slush on the lake. In some places, a lot of slush. Here are two pictures from Gerry Rummery, who was out taking down trail markers for the Sunset Trail Riders. Trail L106 runs from Clearwater Bay down to the North West Angle. This first photo was taken on Monument Bay, which is south east of Big Narrows.
Gerry reports that the slush was 12 to 18 inches deep!
You can’t enlarge these pictures because Gerry kept them small in order to email them to me. But you get the idea.
The more northerly parts of the trail were not so bad. One or two inches of slush.
With another day of warm temperatures, this will probably get worse.
Now I need to talk to you about the Covid-19 Pandemic. Kenora’s Lake of the Woods District Hospital is in trouble. Five of our local doctors are quarantined. We are always short of doctors here, and use visiting doctors from elsewhere in Ontario to make up about 20-30% of the shifts. Those locum Doctors aren’t coming. They cannot. Many are needed to staff emergency wards in their home cities. Others are in quarantine. Overall, Kenora is down to about half of the doctors we usually have, and quarantine has meant a shortage of nurses as well. Here’s a link to an news story about it from CBC Manitoba.
The LoW District Hospital has only four ICU beds, and no advanced care. Ordinarily, patients who need surgery could be transferred to Winnipeg, especially if they were from Manitoba. Right now there are Manitoban patients who are quarantined because of their travel history: they cannot be returned to Manitoba.
Dr. Sean Moore is the chief of emergency services at Lake of the Woods District Hospital. He urges Manitobans to stay where their doctor is. He’s not alone. Dr. Brent Roussin, chief of Manitoba’s provincial public health office, says travel to areas with small hospitals could overwhelm them. And the Manitoba government is advising cottage owners not to go to their summer properties during the pandemic, in or out of Manitoba.
Don’t forget to keep an eye on the Kenora Online Covid-19 page. It’s kept up to date. Some stories there: City of Kenora has declared a state of emergency, Manitoba requires self isolation for people entering the province, Ontario Provincial Police can fine people for violating an emergency order.
Please keep yourselves safe. Going to the cottage is not essential travel. I never thought I’d say this on Ice Patrol, but please stay home until things are better.