Ice Conditions for Southeast S.D. Jan. 2

Below is an ice conditions report for some of the lakes in Southeast South Dakota sent out by GF&P. Conditions right now are extremely dangerous and ice is unstable at best. On Lake Mitchell a large pocket of open water can be seen in the middle.  If you think you must go on the ice please take proper precautions.

Southeast South Dakota Ice Reports 

Ice conditions are EXTREMELY UNSTABLE at this time throughout the Southeast Region of SD.  The mild weather has deteriorated ice to the point where extreme caution is advised to anyone who may want to venture onto the ice.  If you do go, the following suggestions are advised:

  • Go with a companion, walk in single file with one person testing the ice while the other person stays on shore, or on good ice, as a rescue person
  • Test the ice often
  • Wear a life jacket
  • Carry ice picks
  • Take a length of rope in case you need to pull your companion out
  • Carry a cell phone where it can stay dry, but easily accessed
  • Have a plan on how you will get out of the water if you happen to go through
  • Don’t go if the ice is unsafe


WilmarthLake- Very few fishermen on lake.  Four inches of ice reported last week. There is sheet water starting to be visible on top of ice, with spots opening up on lake. Conditions Very Poor.  


All lakes are 6-10 inches but very UNSTABLE.  Sheet water is starting to develop on ice along with places opening up on some lakes.  Still fisherman activity on ice.

Brookings area lakes had about five inches of ice on average, but there were areas of open water along shore on both Nature Park Ponds.  A couple of holes, drilled near the access point on Gustafson’s a few days prior, had caused the ice to deteriorate around them so that you would have gone through if you were not paying attention. 

LakeMenno- Around 4 inches of ice with fishing activity present

LakeThompson- Open water on south side of Oldham Grade.  Quite of bit of fishing activity reported on 2 mile, and up around Schaeffer’s Slough.  6-10 inches in places with some open water around the main lake.

Ice on all other lakes is UNSTABLE, with ice anywhere from 5-10 inches.  Some sheet water occurring on lakes.

MadisonandBrantLake- 4-7 inches of ice.  Some fishing occurring.

Herman – Due to aerators main lake is open and very dangerous around rest of lake.

Other sloughs/lakes – Thin ice throughout area.

LakeAlvin- No fishing activity reported.  Ice is 4 inches, but starting to turn blue and becoming very unsafe.

LakeLakota- Minimal fishing activity. Ice starting to turn blue and becoming unsafe.

LakeVermillion- Open spots on lake with some people still trying to fish. Thin ice around 4 inches.

IslandLake- Fisherman activity present with some thin spots on lake.

LakeCarthage- Shack went through ice—EXTREMELY DANGEROUS.  Still some fishing activity.

FamilyPark- Ice is unstable and honeycomb like. No ice fishing advised at this time.

Beaver – Lots of open water in the middle of lake.

TwinLakes- Some open water around the points 7-10 inches some fishing activity.

ScottsSlough- Ice conditions could be unstable.

There is no good ice throughoutSanbornCounty.  No ice fishing advised at this time.

Ice is UNSTABLE ON LAKES          

McCookLake- EXTREMELY DANGEROUS.  No ice fishing advised at this time.