Well, it is New England, what do you expect? The weekend of the 11th and 12th gave the lake temperatures in the high 50s and touching the 60s. It also rained and got rid of most of the snow except in the deep woods and north slopes. It then got cold, it then snowed, it is now sunny. Pictures below tell the tale…..
The melting was quite dramatic on the 11th and 12th. The couple of inches of snow mostly melted onto the surface with the sunny warmth and then the rain. After the rain, the sun came out in places with some fog floating across the lake.
Old snowmobile paths filled with water and much of the snow became saturated. The ice under all of this was not affected by the warmth except for little places where the water drained down through cracks.
Some of those places looked like giant spiders had landed. The roundish centers took some time to freeze but there was little danger of falling through. Places with pressure ridges were another story and there was lots of open water between Stamp Act and Cate Island, for instance.
Not all the “spiders” were alike, must be lots of different species. A lot of the lake was quite good skating although some places were quite rough. One skater traveled around Governor’s Rock, near Triggs to Albee Beach and then along Townsend Shore.
Iceboaters have good communication skills and as soon as the ice was refrozen, they were back out enjoying the lake.
But recently, other forms of travel on the lake have shown up. People now put studs on their bicycle tires and can cruise around the lake by bike when there is ice. This bike was not glamorous in that it was a three speed that was most likely used to keep up after kids on their bikes as they were learning to ride. It doesn’t have to be a fancy bike, just fancy tires.
It then snowed about 6 inches of heavy, wet snow. After the snow, another group of people were out enjoying the lake. A pair of skis and a kite can make for fast travel across the lake. Gusty winds aren’t your friend but with constant wind, the kites can whisk you across the lake almost as fast as an iceboat.
The day after the guy with the kite was out, another inch of snow fell and then the wind picked up and turned the lake surface into thousands of little drifts. Some places have bare ice while others have drifts 8 or so inches deep. I guess any drift that wanted to get taller would be blown away by 30 mph winds.
When the wind died,Saturday brought about a chance to get out and ski on the lake. This skier brought his short-hair pointer who likes to swim in the lake during the summer but finds it great to run on a new playground when the conditions are right. On Saturday night, about 5 more inches of snow came down and until the wind blows it around, the lake surface will look smooth. It probably won’t stay calm so that snow will be blowing around soon.