Four groups of ice fishermen had to be rescued from the ice on Green Bay yesterday after strong southeasterly winds shifted the ice and stranded them at various points off the peninsula’s west shore.
Door County Sheriff's Department Sergeant Brad Moe says the Brussels-Union-Gardner Fire Department rescued two people off of Chaudoir’s Dock and the U.S. Coast Guard sent its airboat and helicopter to rescue two groups with a total of five fishermen north of Sandy Point and three more near Sherwood Point. None of the ice fishermen required medical attention but some had to leave all-terrain vehicles behind.
Moe says the ages of those rescued ranged from 14-69 and none of them were residents of Door or Kewaunee Counties.
The Door County Sheriff’s Department began receiving calls around 11:30 Saturday and sent the Sturgeon Bay, BUG and Southern Door Fire Departments to conduct a search from the shore so they could direct the Coast Guard.
Each year a crack forms in the ice on Green Bay once the Coast Guard breaks ice on the shipping canals and it shifts east to west depending on the wind patterns. Moe says the crack runs almost the length of Door County and warns people to stay on the east side of the crack if they choose to go out on the ice.
Moe expects the wind to change direction within the next few days and close the crack, allowing the ice fishermen to retrieve their ATVs.