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Skating On Thin Ice

February 3, 2010 — The verdict is in. Most places will see six more weeks of winter, but has it even been cold enough yet to hit the ice?

All in all itís been a pretty forgiving winter so far in southern Ontario.

After temperatures plummeted this past weekend, the cold weather has once again moved out for now. Snow has finally landed in Toronto though. The last measurable amount was only two centimeters and that was exactly one month ago. Before that, the last major snowfall was at the beginning of December when just under ten centimeters fell.

Despite a few flurries in the forecast this week, it wonít be looking or feeling much like winter.

So what does that mean for skating hopefuls?

Even after a cold snap like the one that was felt recently, a mild day can easily change the thickness of the ice. The best way to know for sure if the ice is safe is to actually measure it. Itís recommended that the ice is around fifteen to twenty centimetres thick before lacing up and heading out.

Itís the same story for snowmobiling. A deep freeze may give you the impression that riding over open waters is safe. Ice and snowmobiling drowning is one of the leading causes of snowmobile fatalities in Canada.

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