UPDATE: Weather Conditions Have Not Been Favorable For Lake Superior Ice Caves Near Apostle Islands
Did you get to see the ice caves last year? I regret I couldn't find the time to travel to Bayfield and see the amazing Wisconsin Ice Caves. They had said that predictions looked good that we may get the chance to visit them again this year, but recent reports are saying that's not the case, yet.
---UPDATE 1/19 6:30 PM---
Officials at the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore posted the photo below to their Facebook page, showing extreme wind damage to the ice from over the weekend. While this doesn't completely rule out the chances of ice reforming for visitors to make the trek out the the caves, a lot of calm and very cold weather would need to set in for a significant amount of time.
I must be living in a vacuum, because until last winter, I had never heard of the Apostle Island Ice Caves. Mother Nature at her best, using snow and ice to create a shoreline of ice caves that entices people of all ages to travel long distances and walk at least a mile along the frozen shore of Lake Superior. The further you walk, the more you'll see.
As we continue to monitor the weather conditions we are finding that it has gone from a great chance that we'd be allowed another glimpse of mother nature's finest to a not so great chance due to reported holes and open spots along the shore line.
That's what park rangers were saying as of January 15. The ice is still to thin to safely allow visitors to access the caves. But, don't give up hope! If extremely cold conditions return it would allow the ice to harden to the point the caves may open again this year. Stay tuned, we'll continue to monitor the situation for you.
Remember, if the weather is favorable and the caves do open again this winter for visitors, they are planning to charge a new visitor fee. The National Park Service spent more than $450,000 dealing with visitors and monitoring ice conditions and that has lead to the decision to charge a fee.You can learn more about the fees here.
To receive up to the minute updates on ice conditions and whether or not the caves are open to the public, you can call the Ice Line at (715) 779-3397.