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Old 02-28-2006, 09:40 AM   #1
DRH
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Default Ice Conditions

This past Sunday we took our snowmobiles out on the ice for the first time this winter, on the newly-fallen 10" - 12" of light powdery snow. We rode from near Minge Cove toward Smith Point, out around the northwestern end of Rattlesnake and down its north side, over to Alton Bay, down to the bandstand, back out of the Bay, northwest to Sleepers Island, around Sleepers and back to the Minge Cove area. Ice conditions were generally good, except for a number of ridges. We did encounter one small area that looked just a bit slushy southeast of Treasure Island, but it appeared to have solid ice under the damp snow. We did not encounter any open water in the areas we visited.

Anyone going out on the ice on a snowmobile or ATV needs to be very mindful of the numerous ice ridges (as well as the much-reported open water areas). Many of the ridges are 12" - 18" high, and there are also some fairly large chunks of ice near some of the ridges. All the ridges we encountered had low or flat areas where we could safely cross, and the ice around them was solid. If you go out on the ice, be alert to the many ridges. In bright sunlight they are easy to see but if the sky is cloudy, creating "flat" lighting on the ice, they could be more difficult to spot.

We did not venture over toward Diamond Island or across the Broads to Winter Harbor or Wolfeboro.

Has anyone ridden over the ice to Wolfeboro from Alton Bay, Rattlesnake Island or Treasure Island yet? If so, please let us know what the ice conditions are between Rattlesnake Island and Jockey Cove, between Moose and Barndoor Islands, between Ship and Moose Islands, around Sewell Point, and in Wolfeboro Bay. We'd like to ride from the Minge Cove area over to Wolfeboro this coming weekend, but we'd like to get an ice condition report first if anyone here on the Forum has ridden over that way yet.
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Old 02-28-2006, 11:15 AM   #2
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Default Ice Conditions - Rattlesnake

Don,

I have been reading your posts over the past few years and want to thank you for all of your time and effort in posting informative info. Can I assume from your post that a trip from Rattlesnake Landing to the South West side of Rattlesnake should be fine? I was hoping to venture out this weekend with a group on snowmobiles.
Thanks again.
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Old 02-28-2006, 12:07 PM   #3
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buddy
Don,

I have been reading your posts over the past few years and want to thank you for all of your time and effort in posting informative info. Can I assume from your post that a trip from Rattlesnake Landing to the South West side of Rattlesnake should be fine? I was hoping to venture out this weekend with a group on snowmobiles.
Thanks again.
Buddy,

Thanks for your comments.

We visited Rattlesnake Landing by car two Saturdays ago and the ice there looked good, with a number of fishermen and bob houses out on the ice a short distance from the boat ramp. We didn't take our sleds over there this past Sunday so I can't give you a current report, but since the ice there looked fine a week ago it is probably safe now. Here's a photo I took when we were there:



The ice all along the southern side of Rattlesnake looked good to us as we rode by there this past Sunday. We were riding about halfway between Rattlesnake and Treasure/Sleepers Islands and the ice was solid in that entire area.

I believe you should be fine traveling from Rattlesnake Landing to the southwest side of Rattlesnake Island.
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Old 02-28-2006, 08:11 PM   #4
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Default ...,...open water?

Driving down Route 11 today, going south from Gilford to Alton, there's open water from aproximately Interlakes Park to just north of Diamond Island. Is this new or is it an area which never froze over?

Last edited by fatlazyless; 02-28-2006 at 08:13 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 02-28-2006, 10:58 PM   #5
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Default

There's two fairly large areas of open water...one below Belknap point, and another out off Lakeshore park / Ellacoya area. big enough to run a small aluminum boat around!

Here's a link to some pics on Snakeeyes website with an aerial photo by Flyguy showing the large areas.

http://www.rattlesnakecam.com/pic.htm
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Old 03-02-2006, 03:22 PM   #6
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Exclamation Update!

Today we took our snowmobiles to various places around the southern end of the lake. We stayed east of Diamond Island to avoid any open water.

The ice from the northwestern tip of Rattlesnake Island down to Alton Bay appears very solid. We did not encounter any dampness or areas that looked questionable in that entire area. (The ice along the northern side of Rattlesnake was solid as well when we were on that side of the island last Sunday.)

However, there are dangerous ice pressure ridges everywhere. The expanding and moving ice has created these ridges, and itís done a great deal of dock damage as well.

When we went out last Sunday there was a relatively small ice ridge between Rattlesnake Island and Diamond Island, but we were able to find a spot close to Rattlesnake to travel over it. Today, that ridge is much higher than last Sunday and we could not find a place to safely cross it. So we turned around and went along the southern side of Rattlesnake and headed over toward Jockey Cove in Wolfeboro. Much of the ice out in that area is bare now, as a lot of the 12Ē inches of light fluffy snow we got last weekend has blown away. There were still enough areas of snow on the ice to keep the snowmobiles cool, however.

Just west of Jockey Cove, a large pressure ridge runs from the mainland all the way over to Little Barndoor Island. As with the ridge between Rattlesnake and Diamond Islands, we could not find a suitable spot for crossing. This ridge pretty much cuts Wolfeboro Bay off from the rest of the lake for safe snowmobile travel. We didnít try going around Barndoor Island to get to Wolfeboro Bay, but it appeared that unless thereís another ice ridge over that way, that would currently be the only way to get to the Wolfeboro Bay area from the main part of the lake.

We then rode to Clay Point, around Chestnut Cove, over to Black Point, and down Alton Bay to the bandstand. Other than some relatively small pressure ridges running across the Bay in several places, the ice there is solid. However, the ice has done damage in Alton Bay as well. Hereís a picture of a dock we encountered along the east side of the Bay:

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Old 03-02-2006, 03:29 PM   #7
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Exclamation Rattlesnake Landing Update

Buddy,

We rode our snowmobiles from the southwest side of Rattlesnake to Rattlesnake Landing this morning and the ice is solid everywhere in between. You should have no trouble safely getting out to Rattlesnake this coming weekend.
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Last edited by DRH; 03-02-2006 at 07:03 PM.
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Old 03-02-2006, 05:29 PM   #8
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Default Thanks for the updates!

DRH Becareful and thanks a ton for the updates. I am still leery....
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Old 03-03-2006, 09:06 AM   #9
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Default Rattlesnake Landing

Don,

Once again, thank you for the informative info. Hopefully you will see a few lights out on Rattlesnake this weekend! I am very jealous that you get to enjoy the lake on a daily basis.
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