While the polar vortex brings a gut-punch of cold, it also brings with it something far less obvious: black ice. While seeing snow often cues drivers to slow down, what likely isn’t seen in extreme cold is ice, which can even form from condensation caused by car exhaust.
Rescuers pulled two bodies from a car that plunged into the Mississippi River in Winona, Minn. on Sunday. The Winona County Law Enforcement Center said they received a report around 7:19 a.m. from someone who saw tire tracks going over the dike at Riverview Drive and 2nd Street.
The winter months bring many snowmobilers, ice anglers and other winter sports enthusiasts to the St. Croix River. But this year, they’re finding that there’s one area that’s off limits. For Guthrie Pritchard, the icy surface of the St. Croix River creates the perfect terrain for four wheels and a sled. “It’s fun and I can pull my friends around, and I can throw myself off and wipe out,” Pritchard said.
It’s hard to believe any birds can tough out our Minnesota winters. Swans in Monticello choose to stay through the ice and snow, some even living on ice with only a patch of water nearby. But lately, the Department of Natural Resources has received a lot of calls about birds on ice. Nongame Wildlife Information Officer Lori Naumann says people think they’re stranded, but that’s usually not the case.
With 104 lakes and three rivers in Hennepin County alone, Sheriff Rich Stanek says it’s a busy time for ice rescues in Minnesota. “Maybe you had subzero temperatures, but you’re going to go through,” Stanek said. The Hennepin County Sheriff’s office responded to 25 rescue calls out on the lakes last winter from people falling through the ice. Three people were killed. “The most important thing is to stay calm,” he said.
One of the Twin Cities is getting new snow plows and new leadership after last week’s snowstorm. Five days since the snow started falling, streets in Minneapolis and St. Paul are still caked in slippery ice. Extremely cold temperatures haven’t helped. Salt can melt five times as much ice at 30 degrees as at 20 degrees. However, when it’s colder than that, it’s pretty much useless. But St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman isn’t waiting for a warm-up. He’s making changes in his public works department.
You’ll want to give yourself some extra time on your way into work Monday morning. The plows haven’t been able to clear all the snow that fell Sunday. And the biggest reason for the delays? A coating of ice beneath that new layer of snow.
Some Minnesotans say “bring on the winter.” They want the snow, the sports and the ice. But others say “It’s not even Christmas. Can’t this all wait?” Bryn Mawr-resident John Padgett is definitely a Christmas guy. The lights go up early in his yard display, a 15-year tradition. “I usually start the first week of November to be done by Thanksgiving,” Padgett said. “And they’ll probably be up until I can get them unfrozen from the ground.”
Among our weapons to fight winter is an ingredient that’s also on our kitchen table. Salt gets rid of the slick spots on our driveways and sidewalks. But how does salt melt ice? Good Question.
As Minnesota’s lakes start to freeze, safety officials are warning outdoor enthusiasts to be cautious when venturing out onto any lake that’s covered or partially covered with ice, especially those with aeration systems.
An ice fisherman is in critical condition after falling through thin ice.
The Minnesota Wild has a brand new Zamboni – it’s first new ice resurfacer in 14 years. It’ll be a few weeks before the 8,620 pound machine is in “game shape,” but that had us wondering: how do Zambonis work?
You may not even want to think about it, but winter is right around the corner. WCCO-TV meteorologist Chris Shaffer says we could see our first frost by this weekend.
Many of you ended up with dents in your cars and roofs from all of the hail that came down last night. Reports ranged from hail the size of a pea to the size of a tennis ball.
As cold as this spring was, and as chilly as this Thursday feels, it would probably surprise few to learn that a WCCO photojournalist captured what appeared to be a chunk of ice floating down the Mississippi River in June.