Think Twice Before Going on Ice 16 Dec 14

With the recent weather fluctuation and inconsistent ice conditions, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is urging everyone to think twice before going out on the ice.

“Ice is never 100 percent safe,” according to Maj. Greg Salo, DNR enforcement operations manager. He says “Don’t put yourself in needless danger. Check ice conditions before venturing out. No fish is worth unnecessary risks.”

Anglers and snowmobilers need to be cautious. Several ATV’s, trucks and fish houses have gone through the ice in recent days. Ice that is 6 inches thick in one area may only be an inch thick in another location.

So far this year, one person has died after going through the ice. Last winter, three people died after falling through thin ice.

Salo recommends anyone heading out on the ice should: carry a set of ice picks, check with a local bait shop or resort— ask about ice conditions— and measure the ice. 

If ice at the shoreline is cracked or squishy, stay off. Don’t go on the ice during thaws. Avoid honeycombed ice, dark snow, and dark ice.

Ice is generally thinner where there is moving water, such as inlets and outlets, bridge abutments, islands, and objects that protrude through the ice.

The DNR clear ice thickness recommendations are:

  • Four inches for walking.

  • Five inches for a snowmobile or ATV.

  • Eight-12 inches for a car.

  • 12-15 inches for a medium-sized truck.