The Properties of Ice

view from Lake Side Inn in February 2014

This picture was taken about a month ago, when temperatures hovered in the low single digits. We’d had a couple of warm days, and it rained. After the rain stopped, Rose took this picture outside the front door of the Maple Springs Lake Side Inn. It looks like the ice is beginning to melt, blue water puddled near the shoreline. But it was minus 14 degrees outside.

The ice fishermen were not discouraged. We heard reports that the ice was over thirty inches thick, and one story about a guy who went fishing with his father-in-law. They had a 48-inch auger, and after five tries, could not poke through the ice.

Here’s what happened:

The rains caused the streams to flood, and when the water ran into the lake, it lifted the ice. Water around the perimeter, but a solid, thick mass of ice over the rest of the lake. The fishermen now wade through water to get to the ice, or jig up little bridges to cross over.

“The lake outgrew the ice,” Jeff Kelderhouse said as he was sitting in my dining room, wet to the tops of his boots.

We’ve had a few spring-like days, but I think the lake is still far from melting. We’ll wait with anticipation. Some years it simply melts, but some years, the melting is spectacular! Stay tuned.

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