May 19, 2013

When will Lake Louise melt?

Spring comes late in the Rockies, and when the lakes start to melt, you know that summer is around the corner.  We've been keeping track of the melting date of Lake Louise for 20 years, and the range is quite surprising.  The earliest “ice off” date we've recorded is May 25, and the latest is June 13!

Lake Louise on May 19, 2013
If you're curious about when the lake will be ice free this year, you can watch from home – the Chateau Lake Louise has installed a web-cam on their rooftop!  It looks down and across the lake, and updates every few minutes for a realtime view of the lake.  As we write (May 19 at 10:30 a.m.), the current photo clearly shows full ice coverage.  You can see the outlines of the half-dozen rinks that were used for the pond hockey tournament in February, and if you look along the right hand side of the lake, the thick white stripe is the cross-country ski trail from earlier this winter.

What's your vote for when the ice will come off the lake?