“ICE OUT” on Lake Winnipesaukee was officially declared at 9:30 am today,, March 23, 2012, by Dave Emerson of Emerson Aviation in Gilford.
Observers have maintained a close watch of the disintegrating ice over the past several days. David Emerson has been making regular flights to monitor the last strongholds in Center Harbor and Meredith Bay. “Yesterday before sunset there was still ice in the bays near Center Harbor” Emerson stated adding “The wind picked up overnight and broke it up (the ice) and cleared the route for the Mount Washington Cruise Ship and Ports of Call.”
Dave made the flight this morning and reported the official “ICE OUT” at 9:30am..
“ICE OUT” becomes official when the route of the MS Mount Washington is clear and navigable. That is, the ship must be able to cruise among its five ports: Alton Bay, Center Harbor, Meredith, Weirs Beach, and Wolfeboro. Records of “Ice Out” date back into the 1800′s. This year’s “Ice Out” breaks the previous earliest “Ice Out” record reported on March 24, 2010 and the latest on May 12, 1888. On average Ice Out appears in mid-April. The event serves as one of the annual omens of warmer weather, creating much speculation locally. More importantly, the occurrence signals the advent of another tourist season.
The Lakes Region Tourism Association is a non-profit organization established in 1936 to promote the region in-state, out-of-state and internationally to attract more visitors to the area. The Association publishes the “Where to Guide” and the “Official Lakes Region Map & Guide” and maintains an award-winning web site www.lakesregion.org. To request a free vacation package, call 1-800-60-LAKES.