Massive 'ice shove' swallows Mille Lacs lakefront

Ice tsunami damages deck and pushes against lakefront home on Mille Lacs

Weather conditions Monday drove a massive ice shove ashore on Lake Mille Lacs.

The wall of ice appeared to be over 10 feet high in some places. It damaged this deck and pushed up against this lakefront home on Mille Lacs near Isle.

Monday featured sustained strong northwest winds with gusts to over 50 mph across much of Minnesota.

Wind gusts Monday afternoon
Projected wind gusts at 5 pm CDT Monday afternoon

Gusts over 50 mph were common Monday like this one in Coon Rapids, Minn.

Wind gusts Monday
Wind gusts Monday
Twin Cities National Weather Service

The strong wind produced significant frictional force on the ice sheet. The combination of ice breaking up and high winds on Mille Lacs created ideal conditions for the ice shove.

Here’s NOAA’s definition of an ice shove.

In hydrologic terms, on-shore ice push caused by wind, and currents, changes in temperature, etcetera.

MPR News is Reader Funded

Before you keep reading, take a moment to donate to MPR News. Your financial support ensures that factual and trusted news and context remain accessible to all.