2003 Annual Pawtuckaway Lake
Ice-Out Date Guessing Contest
Wednesday, April 16, 2003
Drum Roll Please.
It's ICE-OUT 2003.
The Official Pawtuckaway Lake Ice-Out Guessing Contest Jury, after extensive measurements, field study, and deliberations, have declared today, Wednesday April 16, to be Ice-Out for the year 2003.
The phenomenal melting of yesterday gave today a run for its money, but the delayed melting of large portions of the north lake kept the overall average below the 90% threshold until this morning.
The 2003 winner of the coveted and legendary Pawtuckaway Ice-Out Trophy is Nikki Rose of Mountain Brook Cove.
In her entry Nikki explained a little about the sophisticated method she used to forecast the winning date. "I choose April 16 for Ice Out. (mainly because the other dates I wanted were taken!). Thanks, this is fun. I hope if I don't win, Ice Out is some day BEFORE my pick!"
In addition to having her name recorded for posterity on the trophy, and having a year's worth of bragging rights, she wins a $10 Gift Certificate, and a free kayak rental from our sponsor Mountain Road Trading Post. In a couple of weeks we'll be having a party/award ceremony. Watch the PLIA website front page for more details.
My congratulations to Nikki for her great guessing. And thanks to all who entered a Guess, even if you didn't win, the excitement helped us make our way through the final days of a winter that seemed like it would never end. You can see all the Guesses revealed now on the Guesses Page. And last but not least, thanks to our Ice-Out Jury, Tom Duffy, Randy Hale, and George Voltz, who carefully observed and calculated each afternoon to give us our Daily Number.
See you next year. Ice-Out 2004 will begin on Ground Hog Day 2004.
Now, let's go swimming!
Jack Hodgson, Ice-Out 2003 Chairman
Yesterday was amazing, the amount of ice that went away in one day was unreal. The Dolloff Basin (South Lake) went from an amazing 77% ice cover to a lot less then 10% in one day, even more amazing was Neals Cove which went from 50% all the way down to less then 1% in an afternoon. The Pawtuckaway Basin (AKA "The Big Lake" or "The North Lake") didn't see the ice go away like the rest of the lake did, as of last night they still had 60% of the ice remaining. As you can see by the picture that Jack posted below, the Pawtuckaway area still had a huge ice cover. Hopefully this will be gone by this afternoon.
The ice has broken up overnight. There is a small amount against the north side of Chases Grove. The rest of what remains has blown up against and beyond the 2 islands which begin the shallow area, toward Log Cabin Island and the Nottingham beach area. But we are certainly navigable up to somewhere near the 2 islands. There are numerous pieces, but the area north of that is nominally full, I would say.
A tale of two lakes.
7 am -- We're still waiting to hear from the Jury about yesterday's official
Ice-Out number. But it's interesting to see that although the
south lake ended the day nearly ice-free, the north lake still
had a significant ice cover when this picture was taken at 6
pm. (Click the image for a bigger version.)
Tuesday, April 15, 2003
Not Quite Yet
Late Afternoon -- There is clear water from the convergence of the north and south channels about half way to Hooker's Island. The cover around Riley's Island is about 2/3 open. From here to a line a little north of Chase's Grove across to Big Island is all ice. Most of Gove Dam cove is clear of ice. The ice is not moving. It is blocked against the north side of Chases Grove area.
AM -- Forty Percent! Yay! Tax Day. Boo.
Monday, April 14, 2003
...we have big holes.
We have big holes in the south end, all the coves are clear as is the channel. It also looks black under the ice. I wonder how thick the ice is ?
If things continue as they have been going, the lake will make it back to the high that it originally reached on Mar 28. It was a mere two week detour in the arrival of Spring.
Won't be long!
The southerly wind is moving the main ice sheet away from here, so I have maybe 75' of clear water here now. There is a very dark spot about half way across, 3 or 400 feet away but I can't see any water motion in it with the binoculars. There is definite water motion on this side of the ice.Ê
Won't be long!
...slicing through the frozen slush...
The warm weather and the light wind on Sunday took away a lot of the ice yesterday. In Mountain Brook Cove the entire lower half of the cove is currently ice free. Yesterday, I was watching some kayaks paddling around and they were just slicing through the edges of frozen slush. With highs predicted around 80F and a 15-25 MPH wind for Tuesday, the ice will go very fast. Be sure to watch on Wednesday.
Sunday, April 13, 2003
...can't last a lot longer...
Well, the re-freeze is gone now. And a little more, perhaps. The overall ice is a bit darker, but I can't see any holes. The north end, viewed from here is open northward from a little way south of the two islands. The long string of rocks north of Hookers Island makes an open slit in the ice. It can't last a lot longer, I think.
...boating around the edges...
Yesterday pretty much brought us back to the stage that we were at the beginning of last week. Over the night a lot of the ice went away in Mountain Brook Cove, we can actually go boating around the edges now without to much problem.
Well, the lake is finally rising again. Two days ago the State
(did you ever notice that when you're trying to type the word
state, it's really easy to accidentally type satan instead?)
added 3 layers of boards to the Dolloff Dam, and it shows. The
lake is up almost 6 inches in two days. (Click on the small chart
to see a larger version.)
Saturday, April 12, 2003
Surprised how little it actually changed, ice-wise. The open water is slightly bigger, but not much. Not sure how much is from melting and how much is from higher water.
Double Digit Ice Free Numbers Again
Finally, we are back to seeing the ice going away again, it is nice to see double digit Ice Free numbers again. We have been in the single digits for 5 days now. Also, with the good news that the Water Resources Board put another 3 layers of boards and with all this rain, we should see the ice go away very quickly now. Especially with 60F-70F days on the horizon.
Be sure to check back to the Ice Out page daily, the remainder of the ice could go away over night.
Things seem to be progressing a little more slowly up at Seaman's Point. Ice-Out juror Randy Hale reported last evening, "Well, stuff is darkening a lot, but free water at the edge hasn't grown much, maybe a foot since yesterday."
Friday, April 11, 2003
Alert the Media!
For the first time in a week, the ice-out out percentage went up yesterday. Does this mean spring is here?
Thursday, April 10, 2003
Pam Kelly, who guessed that yesterday would be ice-out (sorry Pam!), wrote with her guess, "Please put me down for April 9th. That was the date on my calendar that Jim took his first swim in the lake last year, so why not?"
Did Jim go for a dip on the 9th THIS year? Now THAT would be worth a prize.
Wednesday, April 9, 2003
2003 Pawtuckaway Ice Age
Today appears to be the last day of the 2003 Pawtuckaway Ice Age. The temperatures will be rising for the next 10 days to bring us some much needed spring weather. We should see temps in to the 60¡F by April 19th. Who will be the first to launch a power boat this year and cruise the entire lake? Any predictions?
Tuesday, April 8, 2003
April Ice Fishing?
The weather this year has really been off from the norm. Yesterday we saw a high of 34F, our normal high for yesterday is 54F and the normal low is 30F. Our highs have been closer to the normal lows this year so far. The first bass tournament is scheduled for April 26th, will this become Pawtuckaway's first April Ice Fishing tournament?
Monday, April 7, 2003
Probably can't walk on it, but even the edges around here are frozen again. It will be really interesting to look at after the snow(?) tonight.
Slush and Puddles
The only difference I can see is more slush (from unthawed snow in water) and less dark area on the large ice. This confirms my previous suspicion that the dark areas on the ice were mostly from puddles from the rain rather than water soaking through from below.
Note that the ice-out observations are taken each afternoon, and are reported here the following day. The date under the percentage is the date that the observations were made.
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