I'm making the call for 2012 Canoe Lake ice out on Monday, March 26th... with an asterisk :-)
The aforementioned Charlie Plant sent me a second email and photo from Canoe Lake around noon today, and it's pretty definitive:
"I went down to the camp and was pleased to see that the ice is completely gone from the north end of the lake. From my estimation the ice is gone from 99% of the lake. There is the remainder that blocks our bay in the south and then there is the strange case of the P-Store bay. There is ice in about half of the bay but as the picture shows, there is a rather formidable ice bridge that blocks the entrance to the bay. There is open water behind the bridge but it is large enough that no boats can get through. That means that anyone could get to their place if they left from the camp but no one could get to their cottage if they tried to leave from the P-Store. Thus the lake is completely open but not easily accessible."
Canoe Lake, looking north from near the P-Store point
Monday, March 26th, 2012. Photo by Charlie Plant
From what I see in the photo there is a strong north wind that has pushed the remaining ice into the P-Store bay (and probably into the river down to Bonita as well). This is pretty typical. The important thing is that the vast majority of the lake is visibly open.
So what is the asterisk? Well, it's the forecast. Right now we are looking at -12°C tonight with a wind chill of -17°C, and below zero every night this week. So there is a small possibility that the lake will freeze over again, assuming the wind drops way off over night. And as Charlie pointed out, that could mean two ice-out dates in one year!
I'll have another update tomorrow if I can get another on-site report. For now, all I can say is...