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Ice Conditions in Northwestern Ontario

4/24/14 @ 1:58 PM
Your Northern Connection
User since 4/24/14
As opening weekend approaches, lots of people are wanting to know what our ice conditions are like here in Northwestern Ontario. This past weekend, my Dad and I flew from Vermilion Bay, Ontario to Kapikik Lake (about 140 air miles North, near Cat Lake). We got a good look at many area lakes and took note of the different stages that the ice is at.

In general, the snow has melted from the surface of the ice, many lakes are turning brown, and some even have open water. The brown ice that we see is caused by large amounts of runoff going onto the lakes and this type of ice will erode quickly if we see temperatures of +10 degrees Celsius or higher. The open water (mostly seen on Lac Seul), is also caused by runoff, but also from a current that runs through the lake. Every year, the the water level drops around this time, which causes current and causes the narrows to open up. Having said that, compared to previous years there is far more open area this spring on Lac Seul.

Will the ice be out by opening weekend? This is something we still cannot predict. We are on schedule IF we see lots of days with temperatures reaching the double-digits (Celsius). The 7-day forecast is looking pretty good. We fly between Vermilion Bay and Cat Lake on a regular basis and we will be the last ones this season flying on skis, so we will try to keep everyone updated on the weather and the ice conditions in our area.

I have attached some pictures that I took from the air. The first is of Lac Seul (near McKenzie Bay), the second is of some brown ice on a lake North of Lac Seul, and the third is a picture of the ice on Perrault Lake. These pictures were taken on Sunday, April 20th.

- Meagan Stansfield, Clark's Resorts & Outposts

5/20/14 @ 9:37 AM
J-Man 2.0
J-Man 2.0
User since 4/16/14
Lake of the Woods Update:

Ice-free in the areas around Morson, but there was solid ice in the Little Traverse a few mile west of Firebag Island on Opening day (Saturday.)

Some rain last night and sunshine/warmer temps this week should get things softened up out there soon.

5/14/14 @ 3:18 PM
User since 1/19/05
Lost Bay Resort yesterday!!! Winter will not quit!!!

5/10/14 @ 8:33 PM
Big Dad 73
User since 3/15/12
Anyone have any information on the ice conditions on Lac Seul? I am particularly interested in the Sioux Lookout area. Thanks

5/7/14 @ 9:16 AM
Your Northern Connection
User since 4/24/14
A couple of weeks ago, when I did my first ice report, we were on track for the ice to be gone by opener. The ice had deteriorated quickly in a short amount of time and all we needed was some warm spring days to take it away. Unfortunately, the weather has not been cooperating the last couple of weeks. Although we had some very windy days, the temperature never rose to that 10-degree minimum that we needed and the sun barely came out.

They are calling for rain today, Thursday and Friday, and very warm temperatures for Saturday and Sunday. Hopefully the rain will do some damage and those warm temperatures will carry on throughout next week. If the weather cooperates, there is still a chance that the ice will be gone by opening weekend on some of the smaller lakes as well as lakes that are connected to river systems. We will know a lot more by Sunday evening after this rain and warm weather plays out and we can see May 17th in the seven-day forecast.

Stay tuned!


4/29/14 @ 7:22 PM
Your Northern Connection
User since 4/24/14
Good news! Today was the third day of strong winds in the Vermilion Bay area and it has done a number on the ice! Rain is supposed to start tonight and continue throughout the day tomorrow and possibly Thursday too. My Dad thinks he will be able to fly for the rest of the week and possibly the weekend, but not much more after that. I will try to get some updated pictures of the ice from the air later on in the week. The temperature is supposed to keep going up reaching +13 degrees Celsius by Tuesday! Things are looking up Smile

- Meagan

4/28/14 @ 3:42 PM
Your Northern Connection
User since 4/24/14
My Dad was up North again over the weekend and he took some more pictures of the ice. The ice isn't looking a whole lot different than it was last week (from the air), but the conditions are continuing to deteriorate throughout the area. This time I am attaching photos of slush on Bertrand Lake (one of our outpost lakes), an aerial shot of Wabaskang Lake, and a beautiful picture of the ice in front of our camp on Edward Lake (Vermilion Bay).

Although there hasn't been a whole lot of change in the ice over the last week, the good news is that we've seen warm temperatures and very strong winds yesterday and today. The rest of the week doesn't look too bad not quite reaching the double digits, but hopefully the sun will be warm enough to do some melting. There is also a couple of rainy days in the forecast, which is always good for taking down the ice.

I will have another report in a couple of days when my Dad returns home from Kapikik Lake. Stay tuned!

- Meagan Stansfield, Clark's Resorts & Outposts

4/27/14 @ 8:37 AM
Your Northern Connection
User since 4/24/14
Glad the ice report was helpful! I should have another report in the next couple of days. My Dad will be returning soon from working up North so he will let me know what the ice is looking like now.

- Meagan Stansfield, Clark's Resorts & Outposts

4/26/14 @ 6:46 PM
User since 6/5/03
Awesome report and extremely helpful. I have read countless posts on a couple of websites and all the teeth gnashing over whether or not we all will be fihsing in a few week. The picutres are worth their 1,000 words.


4/26/14 @ 9:48 AM
User since 6/20/13

Thanks for the update.. We fished Grace Lake last year at the end of May and delayed our trip by a couple of days due to ice conditions.. We still had a great time and caught a lot of fish. We are fishing Antenna this year and looking forward to the trip.

Have enjoyed your posts on getting Kapkik ready for the year. Made me appreciate all the work involved with getting a new cabin built in a remote area..

4/25/14 @ 9:36 AM
User since 3/27/06
Reports like this are very much appreciated!! Can you give us an update in two weeks?

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