Coast Guard Breaking Ice Between Mackinac Island, St. Ignace

United States Coast Guard icebreakers will begin fracturing ice separating Mackinac Island and St. Ignace next week.

They state that at the request of Mackinac Island community leaders, Captain of the Port Sault Sainte Marie will open the water between St. Ignace and Mackinac Island effective at 8 a.m. on Monday.

Breaking up the ice advances deterioration and enables local ferries to resume service to Mackinac Island. Additionally, ice breaking activity weakens the ice beyond the tracks created by the icebreakers.

The Coast Guard recommends that individuals who recreate on the ice, particularly those who fish, operate snowmobiles or all-terrain vehicles on ice-covered waters of the St. Marys River plans their activities carefully, use caution on the ice and stay away from charted shipping channels.

For more information, contact the U.S. Coast Guard Vessel Traffic Service at 906-635-3232 or email them here.

The Coast Guard also announced that icebreaking vessels will begin the break out of the upper St. Mary’s river and Whitefish Bay on Monday.

Samuel Risley, Mackinaw, Hollyhock and Neah Bay will pass through the Poe Lock and then will begin establishing tracks leading out to Lake Superior, along with charted shipping routes.

They say Mackinaw will remain in Whitefish Bay, and the other three vessels will travel west to conduct the break out of western Lake Superior.

The icebreaking comes in preparation for the March 25 opening of the Soo (Poe) Lock, starting the 2022 commercial navigation season.