Winter in Wisconsin is a magical time there is snow as far as the eye can see, and the rivers and lakes freeze over leaving a thick sheet of glass. When this freeze happens many Wisconsinites make there way outdoors to enjoy the winter season through ice fishing, ice skating and even snowmobiling.
This year however mother nature has played with our winter patterns and we have seen multiple large temperature changes. These drastic changes in weather can cause uncertainty in the ice conditions on the Wisconsin frozen rivers and lakes. It is important for those venturing out onto the ice during these times to take safety into account.
“No matter what month or how cold it has been you need to consider ice pretty unpredictable. There is no ice I would consider safe ice ,” said Nathan Kroeplin, Wisconsin DNR Warden.
When you go out on to the ice this winter it is also important to always be aware of your surroundings. If you see a patch of broken ice stay clear of the area and make sure to tell other around to avoid it as well.
“When you do go out make sure you tell some buddy where you are going when you are going to be back and even take a friend with you. Then when you are out on the ice carry something like a spud bar to check the conditions as you go,” said Kroeplin.
Along with a spud bar Kroeplin also suggests to bring out and wear a good pair of boots out on the ice that can help grip onto the ice and prevent falling. It is also a good idea to bring some ice picks in case the worst would happen and you fall into the water the ice picks can be used to get out of the water. Rope can also be used to get out of the water if you or a friend falls into the water.
If you do see open ice while out this winter you can report it to your local bait shops or Lake Link, a digital guide to Wisconsin lakes and fishing. This information can help keep other outdoor enthusiasts safe when out on the ice this winter.
For more tip on how to be safe on the ice this winter visit, https://dnr.wi.gov/