ICE OUT: BLUE IS BACK

21 Mar

At approximately 1:30 p.m. Minocqua Time, the last big ice floe in Blue Lake’s west basin gave out, providing clear, navigable access to shorelines all around.  Here’s how it went down:

Tuesday, March 20

Spring commeth, in a major way!  At 10:00 a.m., a huge ice floe still floated about the west basin.  The northern shores and the southern shores both had huge clear areas extending out from the bank line.  A paddle of mergansers bobbed and flew about a thin clear slice of water near the weed bed.  By 12:30 p.m. the area near the weed bed was completely melted with a nice swath of calm, boat-ready water opening up on the north side of the lake.

Blue Lake Melting Underway

The Southern Shores Long to Meet the Northern Shores O'er the Water

Under a fiery sunset, with pleasant temperatures holding steady in the 60s, a large ice floe still remained in west Blue Lake.

Wednesday, March 21

8:00 a.m.  Would I look out the window to see bright blue water rippling over open Blue Lake?  No.  The darn big ice floe was still there… but I knew it couldn’t keep it up for much longer.  At 12:00 p.m. I peeked again and… the thing was STILL THERE!  I had faith.  At 2:00 p.m. I glanced out the window and lo and behold!  Here’s the lake I’ve been waiting for!  Judging by the thinnest of ice fragments sneaking up from the water surface in the middle of the lake, I calculated that the bulk of the ice from this morning must have given way at about 1:30 p.m.

Open Water on Blue Lake At Last!

…and it seems just yesterday that I secured the kayaks for the winter.  But not to wax sentimental, I am ready to take to the water!  (That is, in a safe boat, avoiding all direct skin contact with the electrifyingly-cold substance.)

In bittersweetest of bittersweet news, Wisconsin maple syrup producers got a paltry 1 to 2 day syrup tapping season out of 2012 – the worst season on record – because there just haven’t been enough warm days with cold nights to get that syrup crazy flowing.  The trees are already starting to do their budding which means any syrup that now flows out is going to be bitter.  So, the authentic Wisconsin maple treats that you do find up here this year are going to be out-of-control expensive.  Which bites, because I LOVE MAPLE SYRUP!  I’ll try not to forlornly eat my lonesome waffles this summer and attempt to keep happy memories of this early warmth in my thoughts!

THE CORRECT ANSWER WILL BE REVEALED IN THIS BLOG’S NEXT POST.

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One Response to “ICE OUT: BLUE IS BACK”

  1. Bucky March 22, 2012 at 1:32 pm #

    Way to early!! Have you been in swimming yet?

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