Visitors will get at least one more chance this year to see the Apostle Islands mainland ice caves near Cornucopia, Wis.

The caves, closed temporarily this week due to a winter storm, will reopen Thursday morning, officials said. They are expected to stay open through the weekend, when temperatures are forecast to climb.

Even though ice on the Lake Superior trail to the caves is still about 16 inches thick, officials are suggesting that visitors not delay trekking to see the natural phenomenon.

"It's that time of year when days are getting longer and the temps are increasing," said Julie Van Stappen, chief of planning and resource management for the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore.

"It's anyone's guess how long they'll be open, but we're pretty confident it'll be through this weekend."

Fresh snow now covers most of the bare ice on the trail, but park officials cautioned on their Facebook page that there are still slippery and slushy areas.

They continue to recommend sturdy, waterproof boots with ice cleats and warned that windchills on Thursday morning are expected to reach minus-30 degrees.

For updates on ice conditions, visit the park's Facebook page or call the 24-hour "ice line" at 715-779-3397 ext. 3.

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Pam Louwagie