The rain and warmth that produced the slush is now gone and with it staying below freezing all day Thursday and colder at night, the slush has frozen. Most places on the lake are passable but there are still issues. Always be careful when out on the lake in winter!
In general, the lake ice is safe and it has been measured 6 to 8 inches thick in places a few days ago. On Wednesday, the slush was about three inches deep along the shore although the ice underneath made it so you didn’t sink to the bottom. With the cold weather, all of that is now frozen and travel is possible on the lake.One thing that was very evident is that there were not swimmers on the North Beach of Stamp Act. There was some ice that was smooth enough for ice skating but the crust was in most places.
Snow mobiles had been out on the lake and their tracks are shown below. They probably were out when there was snow on the lake, before the rains and warmth, but their tracks are quite impressive. These go from the west end of Stamp Act north. This is actually tracks of two snow mobiles and although it looks like they are from a four wheeled vehicle, the separation distance doesn’t stay constant. They were made by snow mobiles.
Around Loon Island, there was open water around the rocks. This is typical of areas around rocky areas, especially on the south side of them. If these areas skimmed over and then there was a bit of new snow on them, you could easily fall through.
The surface of the lake was generally something you could XC ski on with a little bit of crusty snow. In places, such as in the shiny parts of this picture, the crust didn’t exist and you had to push yourself across on glare ice. Under those conditions, you push off, skitter across and hope that you don’t fall.
Around Bass Island, the buoy was a bit atilt as the ice was moving a bit when it froze. Many of the regular small cylinder buoys are actually under the ice with the rest at 30 or more degrees from the vertical.
Along the shore, the slush where people had walked has frozen the footprints “for eternity” or at least until the next snow and definitely not past the ice out. What was a very sloppy place to walk on Wednesday was now completely frozen.