About the time when I'm thinking that winter will never go away, and the only way my hands will be warm is to keep them in hot dishwater.....then we get a day like today. The sun made an appearance for the whole day, instead of just a part of it, and really did a number on knocking down the ice on the lake. In the morning, it was frosty white with patches of gray. By day's end, it was mostly black. The wind was down, so there wasn't a lot of movement to the ice sheet. This evening, however, the wind is back up, so I expect it all to move around overnight. Some years, we've gone to bed thinking that it would be a few more days 'til ice out, only to wake up the next day and it was all gone completely. I wonder what tomorrow will bring?
We've been watching our usual markers for spring, and one of them is the melting of the ice in the creek above Sharlene's driveway. The water has been pouring steadily through the culvert for many weeks now, but the ice mass has not gone down. Instead, a channel for the flow was deepening itself. Tonight, Greg noticed that the channel is about three feet deep. Our fishermen have noted in the past how useful this ice is for coolers and keeping the catch chilled. It looks like we will have plenty of it available for whomever needs it. Greg thinks that remnants will still be clinging to the bank in early June.
Another thing we are watching is the progression of the lake level. We'd like to see the level reach at least the middle of our ramp. That would make a good starting point this spring. When the water reaches the top of our ramp, that is exceptionally high, and it can mean that objects on shore get pulled into the lake and go floating away. One year, we went down to the east end to retrieve a large dock that had escaped its moorings from a neighbor's property. It's almost like a treasure hunt when that happens.
Speaking of treasure, when we were out walking on the ice a few weeks back, Greg spotted a hat on the rocks along the shore line. He headed to pull it out, and found that it was a Heston's Lodge hat. It was a good mile and a half from our place, so someone had probably lost it to the wind while boating on some past day. He carefully hung it on a tree branch near shore, so that if the owner spots it, he/she can retrieve it. It's a little worn down, but still usable.