Chanhassen; Eden Prairie
Swimming, Fishing, Boating -
Bluegill; Northern Pike; Yellow Perch; Yellow Bullhead
Common Carp; Curly Leaf Pondweed; Eurasian Watermilfoil
Lake Riley is located about 20 miles southwest of Minneapolis, Minnesota and is shaped a bit like a cowboy hat. Lake Riley straddles the cities of Eden Prairie and Chanhassen, as well as Hennepin and Carver counties. Riley is part of the Riley Creek Chain of Lakes, beginning at Lake Lucy, and is the deepest lake in the district. Lake Riley has a public boat ramp, a fishing pier, and a large public beach as part of Eden Prairie's Riley Lake Park.
~Learn more about the Riley Creek Watershed.
"The present landscape resulted largely from glacial activity during the Quaternary period (2 million years ago to the present). Minnesota's present climate, with its cyclic warm and cold seasons, became established during this time. Glaciers "warehoused" huge quantities of the earth's water supplies. Plant and animal communities migrated, adapted selectively, or became extinct with the changing climate. Minnesota saw the advance and retreat of several major, successive periods of continental ice sheets. Meltwater from the ice masses first pooled in lakes, then overflowed into rivers, which sought sea level." - From DNR Natural History: Minnesota
Thanks to John Bushey for keeping these charts current!
Ice-in date for 2016 is December 13th. After a long and mild fall, winter weather moved in swiftly. Most of the lake was frozen over on the morning of December 10th, but a few lingering holes of open water were host to trumpeter swans and geese for several days. Overnight temperatures below zero finally sealed the ice on the 13th. At least initially, the weight of 8 inches of snow that fell on the new ice on the 10th has caused a slushy, poor surface to the lake.
Ice Out on March 23, 2017. The last day of March puts this ice-out in a solid historically average timeframe. Here is the graph showing the trend line, and despite some very late ice-outs in the last decade, the average has moved slowly earlier over the years, by about a week.
The third-earliest open water came fast this year with the warmth this spring.
Earliest Ice-out dates:
2000 - March 8
2001 - March 14
2016 - March 16
Our latest Ice-out was on April 28th, 2013, a whopping 44 days later than this year!
Although Lake Riley is not included, the Minnesota DNR has a nice chart that shows the 2016 Lake Ice Out Dates.