A sure sign that spring is on the way is when the US Army Corps of Engineers begins to take ice measurements on Lake Pepin in preparation for the upcoming shipping season on the Upper Mississippi River.

Fortunately, the initial readings taken of February 13th found significantly less ice than a year ago when many of the readings were approaching 30 inches of ice.  The thickest ice this year was 21 inches thick running from mile markers 767 to 772.  Hopefully this bodes well for a much earlier river open than in 2018.

(click to enlarge)

Here’s a video the produced by the Corps of Engineers:

KSTP Channel 5 did a nice story about the process the Corps of Engineers goes through to measure the ice.  Click on the image below to view the story.