Wisconsin DNR reminds snowmobilers to be careful as ice thins statewide

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is reminding snowmobilers to be careful amid the ongoing warming trends thin ice across the state and make certain areas extremely unsafe.

“With these unusually mild temps and International Snowmobile Safety Week coming up Jan. 14-22, we urge snowmobilers to be extra careful when driving on ice,” said Lt. Jake Holsclaw, DNR Off-highway Vehicle Administrator. “Remember that no ice is ever completely safe, and that even areas that seem thick and covered with snow may be hiding patches of black ice that could break apart under the weight of the machine and riders.”

The Wisconsin DNR offers these reminders:

  • Contact local sport shops to ask about ice conditions locally on the lake or river you want to cross.  
  • Wear proper clothing and equipment, including a life jacket or float coat should you fall through the ice and to help retain body heat.
  • Do not travel in unfamiliar areas.
  • Slow down when traveling at night.
  • Know if the lake has inlets, outlets or narrows that have currents that can thin the ice.
  • Watch for pressure ridges or ice buckling. These can be dangerous due to thin ice and open water.