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Lake Superior still had ice chunks as late as June 1

Image: Jorma Mirza

Image: Jorma Mirza

Daniel Martins
Digital Reporter

Friday, June 6, 2014, 1:58 PM - No, Lake Superior isn't frozen over still. Despite reaching well past the 97-per-cent mark at the height of the last winter, the lake is now officially at zero-percent.

But as you'd expect after such a frigid winter, there are still plenty of ice chunks floating in the largest of the Great Lakes. The shot above was taken near the end of May, and on June 1, there were enough ice chunks in the southern part the lake to cause forecasters at the National Weather Service in the U.S. to warn people to be careful of swimming near them.

Although most of Superior does have open water, the Canadian Ice service on Friday had a special ice in effect for western Lake Superior, warning of "an unusual presence of very thick lake ice" in the southern parts of the lake.

Officially, the ice season came to an end on June 5, Thursday, according to data released by the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, after a total of 194 days with some kind of ice cover. Of those, there were 44 days where ice coverage on the lake was more than 90 per cent, and it reached a peak of 95.74 per cent on March 2.

In the United States, researchers in Michigan told Phys.org the deepest parts of the lake could be as much as three degrees celcius colder than average by August, and lake levels could be slightly higher due to lower evaporation.

Weather Network meteorologist Doug Gillham says the eventual lake temperature will depend on the amount of sunshine received and regional average temperatures, but areas closer to shore will eventually reach decent levels.

"It's certainly off to a cold start, and you'd expect lake temperatures to be low, but the beaches won't take as long to get up to more comfortable levels," he said.

RELATED VIDEO: Hopefully the water wasn't too cold when the wedding party in the video below was unceremoniously dumped into the drink. You have to see the moment when it happens:

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