Warmer winter weather causing ice fishing dangers to increase

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January 26, 2021 — Our warmer than normal winter weather has become a safety concern for those who enjoy ice fishing. “Ice fishing is a fun winter activity, but it does require attention to safety,” said Alan Osterland, Wyoming Game and Fish chief of fisheries. “Many fisheries around the state are warmer than usual, so staying safe on the ice is very important to prevent accidents.” One Wyoming resident already died this year from falling through the ice.

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According to a recent article on the WGFD website, ice should be at least four inches thick to ensure safe ice fishing. Anglers should make special efforts to check the thickness of the ice every 100 to 150 feet. Avoid fissures in the ice and significant sized cracks that can emerge in a lake. Clear ice is stronger than cloudy or white ice, which has frozen, thawed, and refrozen and is not always stable. White ice can also be from air bubbles or frozen snow and is much weaker than clear ice. For white ice, double the recommended thickness.

Ice anglers are encouraged to call their regional game and fish office to inquire about ice conditions.

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