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July 30, 2014

Record lows continue, anglers wonder what weather will mean for walleye

How cold is it? It’s so cold, some are wondering if the Minnesota fishing opener might get iced.

First, let’s dispense with the bad news. Or maybe it’s good news: The Duluth New Tribune reports Embarrass set a record for coldest temp ever recorded in the state for April 20, with 14 degrees below zero Saturday. The previous record was zero, at Cloquet in 1928, according the the Minnesota’s State Climatology Office

Our endless winter continued Saturday, with the Duluth International Airport recording a low of 11 degrees, according to the National Weather Service. That broke the city’s record for April 20, which had been 14 degrees, set in 1928. That’s following a snowfall of 17.7 inches, according to the Associated Press.

International Falls also set a record low temperature for April 20 with a low of 4 above zero. The old record was 18 above, set in 1966. And to the south, the Twin Cities fell to 21 degrees on Saturday morning, breaking a 125-year-old record for the date. The old record was 26 degrees, set in 1888, sayeth the AP.

The worse news is that it’s not getting any better, with that old “wintry mix” and snow showers likely across the state, with temperatures ranging from the mid-30s to mid-40s through the coming week.

Meanwhile, there’s hand-wringing among local anglers about whether they’ll wear waders or snowmobile suits on May 11, the state’s fishing opening.

There’s still time for proper ice-outs, the AP reports, but things are getting close.

The Pioneer Press reports that officials in northwestern Wisconsin are already throwing in the towel on the opener.

Meanwhile, the Star Tribune quotes one Leech Lake fishing guide as saying, “Looking at the forecast, I’d say we’re in trouble.” And a DNR fisheries manager tells the paper, “It’s not a certainty the ice will be off the lakes by the opener.’’

Oh, and lest we forget North Dakota. As WDAY-TV reports, there’s a flood emergency on top of all this.