The U.S. Coast Guard reports that Coast Guard Cutters Mackinaw and Mobile Bay will be kicking off the break out of the Sturgeon Bay Ship Canal on Monday. In the afternoon, Motor Vessel Kaye E. Barker departs Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding and will proceed west and then north into the bay of Green Bay. On Tuesday, Captain of the Port Lake Michigan will open the southern half of Green bay to commercial navigation. This area was previously closed but will reopen and the cutters will create a rack through the ice from Sturgeon Bay to the Fox River entrance. The Port of Green Bay resumes commercial shipping activity on March 18th.
The frequency of ice-breaking efforts is expected to increase next week as ice conditions deteriorate. This winter was unlike previous ones, as regional ice cover did not reach traditional thickness. All snowmobile, ATV operators, ice fishers, and other recreational ice users should recognize the ice's instability and be cautious near ice.
Photos courtesy of the US Coast Guard