2020 Ice Out Update…5.0

April 17, 2020…

We’ve gone through a pretty good cold snap up here at the lodge. Plenty of wood being burnt in the fireplace but when the sun is out it’s not too bad to be outside. I’m not sure what the cause is, but the lake ice seems to be expanding, buckling, groaning and cracking. I’m used to seeing ice move into shore when pushed by the wind, but the lake is frozen to shore so wind isn’t the likely cause of this phenomenon….the tectonic plates of Eagle Lake…

Buckling ice on shore
Pushing into the deck.
Ice out by the small island.
That’s not a snow drift…that’s ice pushed up in the creek.
Stella and Lilly investigate the mysterious “hump”.
Down by the docks.
Nature’s Brazilian Hair Removal.

My theory on this ice movement is…

O.K., my guess on this is pretty simple. Last fall the lake levels were high and the ice formed accordingly. Over the winter water levels have dropped to their present level but the ice, which is still tight to shore, is trying to fit into a smaller space. Since it can’t shrink, it’s pushing against the shore, and itself causing these bizarre features. If you are an ice expert let me know your thoughts. If you prove my theory wrong there’s a VBL mug with your name on it…

A poplar by cabin 7

So what does a tree have to do with ice?

Not much. While contemplating some of the jobs I would like to get done this spring my thoughts turned to tree planting. Over the last 28-29 years I’ve planted / transplanted a lot of them around the camp….including this tall poplar. Back in the “day” some of the older guests might remember Bernie the horse. Yes we had a horse that would wander around the camp! He was particularly fond of this poplar when I planted it because it was the perfect height for him to straddle for a good belly scratch.

Let’s see a few of the other trees I’ve planted…

The cedar by the lodge.
The red pine (s) by cabin 3

Border update…

Canada and the US have agreed to extend the border closure for non-essential travel for another 30 day period….meaning it is now closed till May 18th. This affects our first week of potentially being open. For those who are impacted I will be contacting you to suggest a few options….moving to a later date in the season, or reserving the same dates for 2021. We will continue to try and keep you updated on any future changes as things become known.

Dogs by the docks
Susanne practising social distancing!

Still haven’t got your ice out guess in yet? What are you waiting for?

11 thoughts on “2020 Ice Out Update…5.0

    1. Bob, I know that times are tough. I will take that under consideration. Hopefully I can run a contest like “Guess how big my fish is”…

  1. Here’s a comment I received on the mystery of the ice movements. A possible reason from Jeff R.

    “To add to your idea…..

    When there is snow covering the ice, the ice stays at a constant temperature. As spring arrives the snow melts and there is nothing protecting the ice from the changing up/down temperatures. The ice becomes pours and full of small cracks, when spring comes and the melting snow causes water to invade the confined spaces. Because of the “cold snap”, the water in the cracks refreezes and the ice really expands?

    So……the ice really expands as the temperature rises and more pressure is put on the ice along the shoreline…………..causing heaving.”

  2. See how this fits with your ice buckling ideas. Ice has a maximum density or smallest volume near freezing 0 C. As it gets colder the ice expands more and more the colder it gets. If the other side of the lake is fixed by rocky shoreline any expansion will force the ice toward your shore and may cause it to buckle at the shoreline.

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On behalf of the Boyes Group, I would like to pass on our sincere thanks for hosting the Muskie Madness Week and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at VBL and had a great time!! This was our 7th year on Eagle Lake and we have stayed at a few other lodges but VBL takes the cake hands down! You can definitely count us in for next year. I’m happy to see you post some of my pics, they turned out well. Thanks again Gord for a wonderful week of fishing and your stellar hospitality, you run a first class operation, we look forward to seeing you next year!

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