DNR stresses caution on ice ahead of Free Fishing Weekend

MADISON, Wis. — With the recent warmer temperatures, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is reminding people to be safe before venturing out onto the ice on Madison area lakes for Free Fishing Weekend.

Conservation warden Jake Donar said people should have a plan in case something goes awry on the lake. While it’s best to go out with at least three people, another safety tip is to make sure someone else knows where you’re going and when you’ll be back.

“The ice is always changing, you can get cracks and heaves and stuff like that, so regardless of how thick it is, it can always be changing,” Donar said.

Donar also warned against walking on frozen rivers and streams because of the possibility of the top freezing and water continuing to flow under the frozen sheet.

RELATED: Madison ice rinks, lagoons closed until further notice due to warmer weather

Warmer weather also led the city of Madison to temporarily close its ice rinks and lagoons on Wednesday.

Temperatures are expected to drop in the coming days, helping the ice to freeze again. This weekend is a Free Fishing Weekend, meaning you don’t need a license to head out to the lakes to fish.

For more details about the Free Fishing Weekend, click here.