As ice begins to form on lakes and ponds, Maine Game Wardens are sharing ice safety tips.
Colder days and nights are starting to freeze over the lakes and ponds here in Maine. However, the ice still isn't close to ideal in many areas. The Maine Warden Service put together a short video demonstrating a few techniques to keep you safe on the hardwater. A very important component to venturing onto a body of water is testing the ice thickness as you move further from shore.
Testing the ice can be done with an ice chisel, or even a crowbar. Ice thickness can vary wildly in the early season. Wardens recommend the thickness of the ice to be between 4 and 6 inches. The video also gives a visual of ideal ice, compared to poor ice conditions.
Wardens also recommend having ice picks at the ready if you were to go through thin ice. Amazon sells various styles for around $10. Picks should be kept on your person, readily accessible in case of emergency. They do you no good if left at the bottom of your pack basket.
If you fall through, stay calm. Grab your picks and drive them into the ice. Use them as handles to pull yourself out of the water. The video above will show you how.