Lake Superior Nearly Ice-Free this Warm Winter

Ice coverage at less than 5% as temps are higher than normal.

DULUTH, Minn.- This winter’s unseasonably warm temperatures have left Lake Superior almost entirely without ice.

According to experts at the National Weather Service, less than 5% of the lake is covered so far, while at this time last year 40% of the lake was covered.

While less ice may make the water seem warmer, experts said that it’s still icy cold.

“Since we have more open water, people might want to take advantage of that and take their kayaks out, for example,” Meteorologist Josh Sandstrom said. “We just want to let people know that the water is still very cold, even though there’s not widespread ice cover it’s still dangerously cold, we don’t want peope to go out on the open water, it’s still very cold out there.”

The lack of ice, Sandstrom added, leads to more evaporation on the lake, which in turn leads to more lake effect snow along the South Shore.

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