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Ice Likely Ruining The Fishing Opener On Mille Lacs

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(credit: CBS) Bill Hudson
Bill Hudson has been with WCCO-TV since 1989. The native of Elk Rive...
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GARRISON, Minn. (WCCO) – For nearly two decades the Enno family has looked forward to the annual state fishing opener at their Twin Pines Resort, just south of Garrison.

But Bill Enno’s launches are still high and dry, where they were stored for the long winter. They stand out like so many docks lining the lake’s icy shoreline.

“We’re getting quite a few cancellations,” he said. “If they can’t fish they’ve got to do something else.”

And that’s lost revenue for hotels, restaurants and charter captains like Steve Smith. He is spending time preparing fishing poles and other equipment while waiting for the ice to go out. The latest complete ice out date for Lake Mille Lacs had been May 7. That makes 2013 historic.

“It’s just basically we’ve got to live with whatever (nature) gives you,” Smith said. “You can’t do anything about it. It’s not going to move.”

What little open water appears on Lake Mille Lacs is covered with a wide variety of ducks, not fishing boats.

Is there a chance the ice will be gone come Saturday’s fishing opener?

“If it opens up along the shore, the wind will blow it around … but probably not,” charter captain Richie Thurmer said.

Standing outside his Twin Pines Resort, Enno shook his head.

“I don’t stress about it,” Enno said. “We got plenty of time to make it up.”

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