Lake Minnetonka yearns for ice out - KMSP-TV

Lake Minnetonka yearns for ice out

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On Lake Minnetonka, the average ice out date is April 15. That's just hours away. There's still plenty of ice out here, about a foot thick in some spots, so if you're trying to ride around in a boat you'll have to wait a little longer.

In the Land of 10,000 Lakes, it's a springtime ritual to guess when the ice cover eventually melts away; something Steve Hage is taking to another level.

"My wife laughs at me because I sit in the kitchen and I stare at the lake, and it's not going to melt, you're not helping it melt by staring at it," Hage said.

The boating season is short and every weekend counts, but Hage, like so many others aren't getting on the water this weekend because of the lingering ice everywhere.

"We're ready, and we're just waiting for mother nature to melt the ice," Hage said.

In Minnesota, the ice is considered ‘out' on a lake when it's possible to travel by boat from any one shore to another.

According to the Fresh Water Society, the earliest ice out happened on March 11, 1878. The latest, May 8, 1856.

But on average, ice outs happen on either April 14 or 15.

The majority of boats are still in storage or on showroom floors.

"We will only be able to get so many out in a given day and have so many trailers and everything is going to take longer," Denise Tetrault, co-owner of Hallberg Marine.

Tetrault says business is fine, but is anticipating a crush of people when they come to pick up their boats. Meaning, it's going to take even longer for people to actually get on the water.

"You're so anxious to get out there, you're looking and finding things to do to get ready."

That means Steve Hage is loading up on boating supplies hoping the ice melts away soon.

Due to the unpredictable weather we've seen this spring, some are saying we may not see an ice out till the first week of May.

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