We’re a couple of days behind Chickawaukee with four inches of pencil ice. I could get through the dark perimeter with the kayak, but not the white center. Just for the record, four inches of white pencil ice will hold 160# and even withstand aggressive boot stomping. But you didn’t hear it here!
Here is a fascinating bit of ice crystal. The vertical part is the usual rotten formation and I believe the curving part, with horizontal crystals, is an ice fishing hole. They always freeze differently from the surrounding ice and now we see the crystals behaving oddly, like they really want to go vertical but just can’t get with the program.