STILLWATER, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Warmer temperatures could cause ice to melt on lakes in the area creating dangerous conditions for people who like to ice fish and snowmobile.
A Queensbury man died in December after he fell through the ice on a pond in Warren County. With warmer temperatures Thursday and Friday, ice across the region will weaken.
“There’s no fish out there worth taking a swim for,” Dean Foster said.
Ice fishing is one of Foster’s favorite winter activities. But he knows when it’s time to back away like a time last year on Saratoga Lake.
“I was the only one on the lake and a crack went right out of the hole I drilled straight across the lake,” he said. “I got off the lake.”
Robert Sammons is the Midway Fire Chief.
“Ice is not safe in general,” he said.
Sammons said going on ice always comes with risks.
“It varies, you know, from depth to depth very quickly,” he said.
If you want to head out on the ice, make sure to measure it beforehand. Sammons recommends the ice be four inches for ice fishing and at least one foot for driving a vehicle like a snowmobile.
In addition, Sammons said to let someone know you’ll be on the ice before you go out and to bring a life vest and ice picks.
“Some to dig into that ice in case you do fall in and always remember you want to turn back to the direction you came from because that ice where you walked out on is generally stronger than ice that may be further away from you,” Sammons said.
It’s even more important to be prepared when warmer temperatures and rain hit.
“With this heavy rain and this snow melt, the water starts to rise; the ice becomes much, much weaker,” Sammons said.
Foster isn’t too concerned, however, since the warm up is going to quickly come and go.
“Just be smart and don’t go out there just because somebody tells you it’s safe,” he said. “Find out for yourself.”
If you see someone fall through ice, Sammons said to call 911 and not try to rescue them yourself.