Lake Minnetonka is officially ice-free, according to the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office.
Officials said ice-out was official at 4 a.m. Wednesday. It’s among the latest ice-out dates every recorded and only the third time ice-out has occurred in May since record-keeping began in the late 1880s. The latest ice-out on record is May 8, 1856.
Though snow was expected in the Twin Cities today, the absence of ice on Minnetonka is good news for the annual Lake Minnetonka Crappie Fishing Contest, set for Saturday at Lord Fletcher’s. The event is sponsored by Minnesota Bound. See www.mnbound.com for more information.
The Sheriff’s Office said ice-out is declared when a boat can be piloted on Lake Minnetonka through the narrows around Big Island and back to the Sheriff’s Water Patrol Unit in Spring Park.
Officials noted there are many navigational buoys not in place yet on the lake, and they noted that it’s especially important to wear a life jacket when boating now because of the cold water temperatures.
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The DNR says members of the committee will contribute to the broader understanding of biological, social and economic aspects of the lake
The Department of Natural Resources will have field testing stations in Kandiyohi, Meeker, Morrison, Pope, Stearns, Swift and Todd counties.
Results mirror results in Minnesota, South Dakota.
Previously, the DNR said it would wait until an annual fall walleye survey was complete on Mille Lacs before determing whether winter walleye fishing could begin Dec. 1.
Deadline to apply is Sept. 24