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Last Updated:  Wednesday, February 05, 2014   |  9:14 AM

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Bringing in the ice

Steve Murdock, Raquette Lake, pushes an almost 300-pound block of ice off a truck and into the icehouse. It was his 11th year helping with the ice harvest in the hamlet. Ice has been harvested from Raquette Lake since the turn of the century -- the 20th century, that is. Back then it was fashionable to have ice from Raquette Lake and it was shipped by train downstate as far as New York City. This year's harvest began Saturday, Feb. 1. The day varies from year to year depending on when the ice reaches 16 inches thick. The weather was perfect, as was the ice. "Perfect," "Best ice" and "Crystal clear" were heard from the volunteer workers, who enjoyed temperatures of around 30 degrees. As the blocks of ice moved up a conveyer belt to waiting trucks, an ambitious group of young men slid them onto rollers and then lowered the blocks, each weighing between 250 and 300 pounds, into the ice house. Raquette Lake General Store and The Tap Room will use the ice during the summer to chill their coolers. 

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