Minnesota lakes becoming ice-free just in time for the fishing opener

Green Lake is the home of the 2018 Governor's Fishing Opener.
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Just 16 days ago there was more than two feet of ice on most Minnesota lakes, but a big warmup following the historic blizzard in mid-April has resulted in a fast-growing list of lakes that are now ice-free or close to it. 

That means Gov. Mark Dayton will have no worries when he hits the water on May 12 for the 2018 Minnesota Governor's Fishing Opener. 

The celebration is happening on Green Lake in the west-central town of Spicer, Minnesota, which is pretty much ice-free as of Wednesday, according to the West Central Tribune


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The definition of an ice-out varies from lake to lake, but it generally means that either the water is completely ice-free or at least 90 percent clear of ice, according to the DNR

All of the pink markers on the DNR map below show lakes that have reported ice-outs since April 29.

According to the State Climatology Office, via the Duluth News Tribune, there has been ice on lakes for Minnesota fishing openers just seven times in the last 70 years: 1950, 1966, 1979, 1996, 2008, 2013 and 2014.

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