ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — A survey crew from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ St. Paul District will begin measuring the ice thickness on Lake Pepin Wednesday.

The annual survey helps the towing industry decide whether towboats will have a hard time breaking through ice on the Upper Mississippi River and when to start navigation to St. Paul.

Lake Pepin is on the Mississippi between Red Wing and Wabasha in southeastern Minnesota. Ice measurements are done on Lake Pepin because it’s the last part of the channel where ice breaks up, due to the slower river current on the lake.

The crew will take an airboat to travel on the ice. They will use a global positioning system to find their exact location and a tape measure to measure ice thickness.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (4)
  1. Bill says:

    And this will cost how much? Why don’t you just survey ice fishermen?

    1. dan says:

      Usally the places the corps checks the ice are lanes the barges use , The ice fisherman donot fish these lanes because they are too deep to fish and avoid the places the corps checks.

  2. SE MN Guy says:

    I understand the need for this to be completed to estimate when the barges can start going thru but my question is why is this news? As stated, it is an annual survey and is business as usual.

  3. ice boater / ice fisherman says:

    Come on…

    can’t be more than a foot or two, the whole lower half of MN and WI
    has had thin ice all winter
    please spend the money on something else


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