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The ice fishing bug is growing here on the regions lakes and rivers. I would like to offer some words of advise and caution to those who wish to test the ice.

With lower river levels and a moderate to low flow conditions are not the norm on the local rivers. With the lower river flows the current will meander around snags and man made objects in unpredictable fashions. Producing even more areas of danger then usual. River ice is always unpredictable and deserves extreme respect.

Areas that should be avoided and treated with great respect are bridges, dams, necked down areas that may focus the flow, storm drains, any inlet/outlet from water treatment plants or agricultural processing facilities. These areas are high risk areas with highly unpredictable ice thickness that will vary on a daily basis!

Another existing and very real danger is "Cave Ice". Cave ice is a result of frequently fluctuating water levels. It is the flex point that the river meets the shoreline or structures within the river itself. Because levels rise and fall the ice often has air pockets under the surface and open water below. It may appear as downward or upward protruding sloping ice, or the surrounding ice and shoreline may appear wet. Steer a wide birth of these high risk areas, they are highly dangerous and unpredictable.

When testing access points to the ice use a ice chisel and test the ice every 3 feet. NEVER assume because you tested the ice here, it is OK over there, NEVER assume with ice!

Do not group up on thinner ice, it will increase you risk, disperse your weight over a wide area. I would recommend you check with the NDG&F and read up their ice safety guidelines and apply the precautions recommended.

So far in my personal experience locally here on the Red River the ice may vary widely from 3-6", or less. The Cave Ice is an issue and deserved great respect. With the lower water levels on the Red River basin I anticipate this to be a concern most of the winter if not all winter.

I would also wish to mention urban retention ponds may also exhibit fluctuations. Be sure you check them out thoroughly and often if you allow your children access to them this season.

Please be very cautious in your dealings with rivers and ice this season!

Be safe, and have a happy ice season.

------------------
Ed "Backwater Eddy" Carlson

Backwater Guiding
"ED on the RED"
[email protected]
><,sUMo,>

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi all.

I would like to offer a word of warning on the present ice conditions on the Red River and other rivers in the region.

The ice was fairly thin to start with, and with the new snow cover and the warmer weather it is dissolving very rapidly.

I would HIGHLY recommend snowmobiles, ATV's, and other recreational equipment stay off the Rivers at this time.

Bride areas are points of very real danger and should be completely avoided and not used as crossings for recreational vehicles or pedestrians!

The surface is very wet and slushy resulting in further dangers. This ice is extremely unpredictable and dangerous!

Thanks,

------------------
Ed "Backwater Eddy" Carlson

Backwater Guiding
"ED on the RED"
[email protected]
><,sUMo,>

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Ed,

What's the latest from the river situation? Is the ice holding up ok or is it getting progressively worse since your last post on it? If it's holding up ok, are you still finding fish?
Scoot

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Brianf.
      Saw on MPR that this year had been even warmer than 2012.  If this weather pattern continues, Lake V will be ice out before the March 28th date from 2012. 
    • Dash 1
      Awesome fish. Way to go.
    • gimruis
      That is a true giant slab around here.
    • chucker1101
      I did a lot of crappie fishing in 2012.   I'd say April 1 is a conservative guess. March 25 seems doable. Depends on the rain and the wind in March. 
    • CigarGuy
      Do you park at The Landing or have someplace closer? That would be a hall from The Landing!
    • SkunkedAgain
      I hate to start this thread early, but this ice doesn't have much of a chance this season. It's about half as thick as it should be, there is no snow cover to protect it from the March sun, and it continues to be abnormally warm. Let's hear those ice-out predictions.   I expect the smaller bays to be open by the last weekend of March with the main lake soon after, likely prior to April 1st. Earliest ice-out on record is March 28th, 2012.   On the plus side, the spawn be done long before fishing opener. Combine the reduced walleye harvest with the longer growing season, and this should translate into a better walleye class for the lake.
    • SkunkedAgain
      I walked into my place late Friday night. It was beautiful - a full moon, no snow and single digits so the lake was making all kinds of noise, wolves howling, and the kicker.....no wind. The only difficult component to walking was the ATV and snowmobile impressions left in the ice. Every once in a while my foot would catch a rise in the ice and I would stumble and almost fall. Besides that, it was a perfect night. Unfortunately I had a schedule to keep, otherwise I would have started a midnight bonfire to stay out and enjoy the evening even longer.
    • Mike89
    • Kettle
      Maybe a replica but it's still swimming 
    • smurfy
      So is it going on the wall??
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