Ice Out Contest Update: March 17, 2021

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

It sure seems like spring is coming along at a fast pace! Here’s a look at what it looks like today:

More grass…less snow.
Looks like water levels are super low!
View from the lake a couple days ago…looking solid.

So let’s recap how the contest works…

I have to remind everyone that the contest is open to anyone reading the blog. No need to be a guest, but if you win and want your “prize” you will need to show up to collect it (barring continued border closure!). Anyways, it’s simple. First person to pick the correct date the ice leaves Vermilion Bay will be the winner. All guesses are kept secret till ice out. I’ve had a good response so far, so if you are still on the fence you better get ‘er done!

Clearwater Lake ramp rehab…

So if you recall from some earlier blog post, the boat ramp I have the portage boats on in Clearwater took a beating during the ice out last year. I waited to this spring to tackle it hoping lake levels would cooperate….and they did. The water is so low the whole mess was exposed.

So assuming the water goes back up to a somewhat normal level the ramp should work just fine. I’ve added more of the “slippery stuff” to make getting the boats on and off easier for some of us more mature individuals. Some new spark plugs and fresh gas….the boats are ready to go. Even fired them up to satisfy my curiosity. Hopefully things will transpire so that they get used this season. More on that at the end of this blog.

The last photo was taken yesterday. I worked on the ramp over three days. Day one the ice was free of water. By day three in front of the ramp I had a couple inches and holes were appearing where I could see the lake bed. Still plenty of ice on the lake, but some warm weather coming…I’m glad I got it done when I did.

The weather has been so nice we even did a cookout on the point:

Chicken nachos over a campfire. Apparently a dog favorite…

Border predictions…

So unlike in the US where the vaccine rollout is going strong, and many people seem to be getting back to a more normal condition….here in the great white north we seem to be far behind, with talk of a 3rd wave and exotic variants. Vaccinations? Well, maybe by September, some talk of end of June…it seems confusing at best. For that reason and a few others we are not optimistic about May or June. If you are booked into that time frame, and don’t have the luxury of hoping for the best (ie. you may require advance notice to consider other options) then you may want to consider moving things to the same time in 2022. This is not ideal and we wish it was otherwise, but I think it’s best to be realistic.

Let’s end on a good note…

Some reminders of a more normal time here at VBL….and everywhere else!

11 thoughts on “Ice Out Contest Update: March 17, 2021

  1. Nice job on rebuilding those ramps. I do hope that is a view I get to enjoy this year. We shall see. Most of my fishing partners have been vaccinated and I get my first on April 6.

  2. Thanks for the subtle nod on St. Patty’s day. Even I could pick up on the correlation between the pic and the holiday ….LOL.

    Nice Joe on the ramps. That had to be a lot of work over the three days. Now…..if only they had winches, for us mature guests, to pull the boats up with 😝

  3. Wow, 2020 was a crazy year all around but things are looking up, all be it slowly. Looking forward to Sunday fish fries later this summer and for sure in 2022.
    We were honoured that Gord and Susanne opened one of their cabins for us last summer while we rebuilt. It was easy to see why their guests return, super place. They have been busy keeping VBL up and ready for their guests return.
    Good luck with your “ice out” guess and Stay Safe as we close in on a return to “normal”.

  4. Cannot wait to see all of you Gordon and Susanne, Mary and Rick and all of your wonderful guests! We are experiencing withdrawal from the north.Love and miss all of of you!

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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!

Trevor Benner

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