March 2011 Archives

Smoke Lake crossing

I received this wonderful photo from Morag Paton of her husband and kids setting off across Smoke Lake yesterday. Almost April, but looking like February. Hard to believe that last year the ice went out just six days from now!

Setting out across Smoke Lake - Sunday, March 27th, 2011.  Photo by Morag Paton

Winter is back - ouch!

Well, just like that winter is back--and with a vengeance! It snowed all day today in Toronto and I had to sweep the car and shovel the driveway twice. And on top of that the forecast is showing at least 5 or 6 more days of very cold temperatures--as low as -15C in Algonquin on both Friday and Sunday nights. That's awfully cold for March 27th!

Given this forecast I'm not feeling very confident in my choice of April 21st--I think we could be looking at a May ice-out date for the first time in 14 years.

I have finally caught up and posted all the dates I have received so far (130 of them), as well as the usual graph showing the distribution. April 22nd is the overwhelming first choice, with almost 50% of people choosing a date in the week between April 19-25.

We shall see!

Clan Matthews!

Carrying on a great tradition here's a wonderful shot of the Clan Matthews on Canoe Lake on Sunday, March 6th -- two weeks ago. Clark reported a minimum of 12" of solid ice, likely more.

The Matthews Clan enjoying a cold March day on Canoe Lake - Sunday, March 6th, 2011.  Photo by one of the Matthews Clan

Cache Lake Ice Report - Algonquin Outfitters Blog

Gordon Baker (the other ice-out blogger :-) has posted an update over on the Algonquin Outfitters Blog with an update on the Cache Lake ice thickness from Wednesday. The short version: 8" of snow, 14.5" of white ice, and 5" of black ice.

I have observed total (black plus white) ice thicknesses in the winter ranging from 8" - 24", usually about 16"-18", so this sounds about average. The temperatures have been a little low in March so far, and the layer of snow will keep the ice insulated. So I think we're looking at an average ice-out this year -- mid to late April.

I have received almost 100 ice out date predictions so far, but have been too busy to update the site. I will have time this weekend, so look for the big list to appear tomorrow or Sunday.

The 2011 ice-watch begins!

Is it March already?!? It must be, because I'm getting emails asking when the Official Canoe Lake Ice-out Poll begins :-)

Well, it begins now!

After last year -- the winter that wasn't, and an ice-out date to shatter all records -- we seem to be back to normal. It feels like I've been shoveling and scraping every morning since well before Xmas, and we're a week into March without much relief. We were up on Canoe Lake two weeks ago, just after the big February Thaw that we seem to get every year, and although there wasn't as much snow as usual, the ice looked clear and solid.

As always you can follow the action with updates, photos, rules, weather forecasts and archives of past years right here at the official Canoe Lake Ice-out website.

So, get your date before someone else does! You can submit it by e-mail to:, and if you haven't already, be sure to sign up for the mailing list so you will be notified of important ice-out events, like, well, when the ice goes out ;-)


Contact Email

You can contact Jeff about Ice-Out by email at 'iceout' + '@' + ''

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  • 2013 Predictions!

  • To make a prediction just send your date to Jeff by email at 'iceout' + '@' + ''

    See what dates people chose in past years.

  • 2014 (May 2nd)
  • 2013 (April 29th)
  • 2012 (March 26th)
  • 2011 (April 29th)
  • 2010 (April 3rd)
  • 2009 (April 24th)
  • 2008 (April 25th)

Historical Sites & Data

    Here is a table and graph of all the ice-out dates since 1989 (plus one very old data point for 1953!)

    In 2008 this site was converted to a blog format, so historical posts are now available via the archives. Previous sites have been preserved here for posterity...

  • 2007 (April 22nd)
  • 2006 (April 20th)
  • 2005 (April 28th)
  • 2004 (April 22nd)
  • 2003 (April 23rd)
  • 2002 (April 19th)
  • 2001 (April 23rd)
  • 2000 (April 26th)
  • 1999 (April 20th)

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