ERIE, Pa. (Erie News Now) – People are already heading attempting to head out on Presque Isle Bay. But earlier this week, the bay was still moving.
It’s safe to say it’s definitely a late start to ice fishing season.
“I’ve already seen people out checking ice, trying to see if it’s worth it or not and then advising other people of if it is or not,” said Asst. Fire Chief Greg Summerson of Lake City Fire Dept.
According to NOAA, only 1.9% of Lake Erie is frozen, as of Wednesday. That’s much less than the historic average of 15%.
The ice on Lake Erie, Presque Isle Bay and most bodies of water in our region is not stable yet. “Anything over two inches is stable. Four inches is preferred for a person to be on the ice,” said Summerson.
That’s why at Lake City Fire Department, the rescue team is getting ready for water rescues. “We go over stuff in house, go over equipment we would be using. Little scenarios that we could practice inside until we can go outside to a pond, Edinboro Lake, or even Lake Erie,” he said.
In addition to that, they’re recommending tools ice fishermen should take with them when it is safe to venture out.
Safety picks, an ice staff and a throw bag are all essentials.
“If you fall on the ice and the ice isn’t thick enough to get out, you can lay this across a chunk of it. It will help disperse your weight,” said Summerson.
Even though it is mid-January, it’s still far too soon to safely head out on the ice.