Every winter the commute from Garden to Gladstone in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula gets quite a bit shorter. Instead of heading up to US-2 and back down the other side of the bay… there is a shortcut… across the ice on Little Bay-De-Noc (part of Lake Michigan) The ice road is an actual maintained road that gets lined with Christmas trees to prevent blowing and drifting. I am sure that Bear has a bridge from De-Noc… or part of Garden to Gladstone.
A new show on TV called “Ice Road Truckers” tells the stories of several truck drivers who make the garden ice road look like a joke. They bring heavy freight to places like Yellowknife Canada a distance 10 to 15 times longer than the distance from Garden to Gladstone. It is amazing how these drivers have to take everything from speed, to ice depth, to water depth, to temperature, to weight into consideration for every moment of their journey.
With the heavy loads, they don’t want to get going fast because the vibrations can cause waves under the ice, causing it to crack in front of them. While in many sections they can’t go too slow because the weight can break into weak sections of the ice.
Have you ever been on an ice road? Do you know of any ice roads in your area?