And the winner is … Little Averill Lake up on the Canadian border on May 6 or 7.
Last week, I was checking in with volunteers in Averill, VT about putting out the loon nesting rafts and discovered that the ice had just barely left Great Averill Lake on May 4. Little Averill Lake was still mostly ice covered at that time. The ice did go out this past week at some point, but the road was closed due to “mud season” (IN MAY!). It will be another week before the road is open into Little Averill Lake below Brousseau Mountain and the peregrine falcons that reside there. The new VCE loon seasonal biologist, Angela Apicelli, and I paddled all of Great Averill Lake this past Friday May 9 to place and vegetate two nesting rafts and found ice along the shorelines and very cold water. We had to make two nervous crossings. It will always amaze me how feathers and down can keep loons and other waterbirds warm on ice-cold waters.