Mar 21, 2012 at 6:44 am
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Thanks to the balmy weather, the Hennepin County sheriff's office already has declared an "ice-out" on Lake Minnetonka.
The ice-out was declared at 5 a.m. Tuesday. Usually the ice-out on the big western Twin Cities lake doesn't happen until mid-April.
This year's ice-out is among the earliest since record-keeping began in the late 1800s. The sheriff's office says a March ice-out has happened in only a handful of years. The last time was in 2000 when the ice-out was declared on March 18.
An ice-out is declared when a boat can be piloted on Lake Minnetonka through the narrows along Big Island and back to the sheriff's Water Patrol Unit in Spring Park.