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Lake Morey Ice Skating

December 31, 2009

The New Year is fast approaching and we’ll soon be holding our annual Skate-a-thon fundraiser on the country’s longest groomed ice skating trail. With temperatures in the “teens”  last night and in the low 20 Fs today, Lake Morey ice continues to build. Yesterday there was 6″ of good sold ice on the northwest section of Lake Morey and our skating trail partner, Lake Morey Resort, has cleared a two mile loop on the south end of the lake.  Ice in the center of the lake is a bit too thin to safely clear for skating but it won’t be long before ice thickens and we’ll have over 4 and a half miles of skateable trail.

If you head off the trail to areas of unknown thickness, please be sure to practice appropriate ice safety techniques. These include occasionally clearing any snow covered ice to observe the type of ice (clear solid ice is the strongest, frozen slushy ice is weaker), use a pointed pole to check for ice strength and thickness, carry ice picks or claws, travel with a buddy but don’t overload the ice by being too close together, and should the ice give way you should be aware of weight distribution techniques.  Be sure to stay away from areas that have river or stream inflow as these spots may have thin ice.

Here’s a ice strength chart that you should consider when planning your next ice fishing or skating trip.

Massachusetts has a slightly more conservative ice strength chart for recreational users.

Here’s the American Pulpwood ice strength chart used when hauling timber across ice.

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