Last year on this date up here in da Nort' Woods, the ground was bare, the crocus were blooming, garden was emerging, and the temp was in the 70s. Today, we have 20 inches of snow on the ground, wind chill was in the minus territory, and the only green that has emerged was in the bars for St. Patrick's Day. So, as I dream of spring, I started trying to think of what I most appreciate about spring here in the forested north. One thing would be that special moment when you realize that the lakes are open again, an event we call "ice out." It usually sneaks up, with the ice cover getting thinner and thinner, but hanging on through each cold night. Then, usually over a night with a warm south wind, a morning dawns and you can see the sky reflected in each of the 1,200-plus lakes in our county.