View Full Version : Stupid Question

12-03-2006, 09:11 AM
allrighty, this is probably dumb, but i always get confused so maybe other folks get confused about it also.
clear ice is weaker ice right?

12-03-2006, 09:15 AM
Oh no!!!! Clear ice is the best ice.

12-03-2006, 09:16 AM
i thought that clear ice was ice that froze really quickly and was therefore weaker than cloudy ice at the same depth. see, i guess i was confused. thanks.

12-03-2006, 09:23 AM
I will take 3" of clear ice over 6" of cloudy ice any day of the week.

12-03-2006, 09:24 AM
Know your ice color meanings. Although a useful indicator, color alone should not be relied upon. For instance, ice of any color subjected to a running water force underneath will be weaker than ice not subject to that pressure. In general, you can surmise the following from ice colors:

Black Ice - this is new ice, very common early in the season.

Clear Blue, Black or Green Ice - this is said to be the strongest ice for its thickness.

White Ice - opaque (cannot be seen through), this ice is generally found mid-winter. It thrives in weather that has being well below freezing for many days. It must be twice the thickness of clear blue, black or green ice to support the same weight.

Mottled & Slushy or "Rotten" Ice - not so much its color but its texture. This ice is thawing and slushy. It is deceptive - it may seem thick at the top but it is rotting away at the center and base. Most prevalent in spring, may be showing signs of browns from plant tannins, dirt and other natural materials that are resurfacing from thawing. Not suitable for even a footstep.

From the Minnesota DNR website:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v305/CrappieMagnet/SAFETYICE.gif Recommended ice thickness for: people - 4 inches; snowmobiles - 5 inches; cars or small pickups - 8 to 12 inches; medium pickups - 12 to 15 inches. Ice 2 inches thick or less: stay off! 4" of new clear ice is the minimum thickness for travel on foot
5" is minimum for snowmobiles and ATVs
8"- 12" for cars or small trucks

Before venturing out on a frozen lake or pond keep in mind:
There is no such thing as 100 percent safe ice!
Recommended minimum ice thickness

(Remember that these thicknesses are merely guidelines for new, clear, solid ice. Many factors other than thickness can cause ice to be unsafe.)

Check for known thin ice areas with a local resort or bait shop.
Test the thickness yourself using an ice chisel, ice auger or even a cordless 1/4 inch drill with a long bit.

Refrain from driving on ice whenever possible.
If you must drive a vehicle, be prepared to leave it in a hurry--keep windows down, unbuckle your seat belt and have a simple emergency plan of action you have discussed with your passengers.

Stay away from alcoholic beverages.
Even "just a couple of beers" are enough to cause a careless error in judgment that could cost you your life. And contrary to common belief, alcohol actually makes you colder rather than warming you up.

Don't "overdrive" your snowmobile's headlight.
At even 30 miles per hour, it can take a much longer distance to stop on ice than your headlight shines. Many fatal snowmobile through-the-ice accidents occur because the machine was travelling too fast for the operator to stop when the headlamp illuminated the hole in the ice.

Wear a life vest under your winter gear.
Or wear one of the new flotation snowmobile suits. And it's a good idea to carry a pair of ice picks that may be home made or purchased from most well stocked sporting goods stores that cater to winter anglers. It's amazing how difficult it can be to pull yourself back onto the surface of unbroken but wet and slippery ice while wearing a snowmobile suit weighted down with 60 lbs of water. The ice picks really help pulling yourself back onto solid ice. CAUTION: Do NOT wear a flotation device when travelling across the ice in an enclosed vehicle!

matt s.
12-03-2006, 12:07 PM
Thanks crappiemagnet,that'll come in useful "if" i ever go ice fishing,since i never ice fished before.

12-03-2006, 12:27 PM
When ask about ice I alwys tell newbies, There is no such thing as safe ice.
Always be prepared for the worst.
1.Always have ice picks around your neck and some kind of floatation device.
2. I always have a complete change of clothes in my vehicle.
3. I always have a good length of rope nearby to help someone else.
4. Never run to someone who has gone through. Throw him something or if you must get closer lay down an scoot out to him. This will distribute your weight over a larger area.
5. I very rarely icefish alone but never go out where no-one else is nearby.
I have been through the ice on a few times. Nothing is scarier. I was on 6 in of good clear ice and was walking around and found some less then 2 inches and went through not 10 ft from the 6 in ice. I figured there must have been a spring or something to cause that but that is why i say I say BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS.

matt s.
12-03-2006, 12:54 PM
yeah,that's one thing i'm scared of,falling through ice.Which is why i rarely ever go.I don't have a buddy to go with either.I can't swim,but yet i do go wading.I do however know my water depth when i do so.

12-03-2006, 01:55 PM
This will also help.Watch this video about 20 times.If it saves somebodies life...it's worth posting it,a thousand times....;)

[Open in new window]

Source...Discovery Channel

12-04-2006, 04:44 PM
Both myself and my father-in-law have been through the ice and it is not a good feeling. Be careful and be prepared for anything.

12-04-2006, 09:54 PM
early ice fishing i always wear a PFD its a smart thing to wear and if someone close by goes in :eek: you can always throw it to them

12-06-2006, 06:43 AM
Terrific educational video and its a shame it can't be shown to more people on a regular basis. Thanks for sharing.

12-06-2006, 10:31 AM
When I go it is usually first ice and we dont go if we dont have at least 4 inches and then when we are going out onto the lake we have a spud that we test the ice in front of us with by giving it a good poke before we move onto it. Before we get to deep water we start cutting test holes to check the condition and thickness as we move out about one every 50 foot or so till we are satisfied that its uniform. I have seen just open water in a spot on a lake that was totally frozen over with 6 inches of ice. Think it was some kind of gas or spring that caused it. But being alert to the surroundings kept us away from that area. As we were approaching that area and spoted it we could see that our weight walking on the ice was disturbing the water in the open water area. Skerry! we slowly backed away from the area and cut a long berth around it to get back to shore.

12-06-2006, 02:18 PM
All of these are great points. But I would like to interject a very important one that I think has been left off(I'm sorry if someone already mentioned it), KEEP YOUR WITS ABOUT YOU. So many times when guys go through they almost make it impossible to be pulled out.

12-10-2006, 03:40 PM
thanks a ton for all the info folks, that's why i love this place! (well, most of it anyway!)