Rotary Club’s Dillon Ice Melt Contest ends early as device turns upside down |

Rotary Club’s Dillon Ice Melt Contest ends early as device turns upside down

Rotarian Rob Phipps, of Breckenridge, helps Summit County Water Rescue Team members Drew Fontana, center, and Jody Patrizio, right, load the Rotary Club’s Ice Melt Contest device into the team’s hovercraft on Lake Dillon Saturday, March 22, 2014.
Alli Langley / Summit Daily file photo |

The Ice Melt Contest is over.

The Summit Rotary Club’s device placed to measure when the ice on Dillon Reservoir has officially melted rolled upside down the night of Tuesday, May 6, said Diane Monaghan, chair of the Ice Melt committee.

From the time the device was placed March 22 for the club’s 29th annual Dillon Ice Melt Contest, a team of watchers has checked the device twice daily, once in the morning and once at night. Monaghan said the device was sideways during the May 6 evening check, and by the May 7 morning check it had flipped upside down.

The official ice melt time ­— and the winners of the $4,000, $2,000 and $1,000 prizes — will remain unknown until the device can be retrieved by boat with the help of the Dillon Marina in about a week.

This year was unusual because the lake still appeared mainly frozen, she said, so the club waited until after a committee meeting Tuesday, May 13, to announce the end of the contest.

Monaghan didn’t suspect any foul play.

“No one could even get out to the device at this time because the ice is so thin,” she said.

She thinks the metal device absorbed heat from a string of four or five sunny days with highs near 50 degrees and warmed the ice below it.

With the winter storm that blew in over the weekend, the area around the device is now covered in snow, she said, so it doesn’t look like it’s floating.

In past years, the rest of the lake has melted, leaving the device floating on its own little iceberg for a couple more days.

“That’s why this contest is so fun,” she said. “You never know what’s going to happen.”

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