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News From 91.3 KUWS
Madeline Island Ferry Line will continue through Monday
The recent bitter temperatures may help the Madeline Island Ferry retire for the season after Monday. Joe Gigliotti has the story.
This will be the first rest the ferry’s taken in awhile. In fact, it’s been running year-round since March 2011. So, Ferry Line Director Robin Trinko-Russell says the frigid weather is more than welcome.
The ferry didn’t shut down last winter because of the mild temperatures. That’s very rare. The only other year it ran year-round was 1998. Trinko-Russell says laying up the ferry depends on Mother Nature. .
“If we can keep this cold weather and not a whole lot of wind, we might be lucky enough to get enough ice so the wind sled can run.”
Once the ferry is retired for the season, the wind sled takes over.
“When I describe it to people, I think of it kind of like a swamp boat, like the swamp boats that they run in New Orleans and Louisiana. It’s a flat bottom. The one that we use a majority of the time for transporting people and freight…it’s got skis on it.”
After the wind sled and more cold weather, Trinko-Russell says the locals are looking forward to the ice road.
“It gives them the freedom to go get groceries, dinner out, or just drive back and forth as many times as they want to.”
In turn, the staff is looking forward to closing out the Ferry season.
“It gives us some time for people to take vacation, for us to catch our breath and catch up on our marketing and other things, and it gives us extra time to do some added maintenance and projects that maybe we didn’t have time to do during the season.”
Trinko-Russell urges wind sled and ice road users to proceed with caution.
“They definitely want to give us a call because it’s not something you want to just come off Highway 13 and go drive on the ice road. You want to make sure you know what condition it is and you don’t want to take any chances.”
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