Work is getting underway this week to open ice roads in Saskatchewan’s north.

Steve Shaheen, senior communications consultant with the Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure explained work crews are currently gearing up to start work on the roads.

“They should be in full construction mode later this week,” he said.

Preliminary work includes clearing snow after it is found the ice is thick enough. Shaheen said in total the province operates four different ice roads along with two winter roads.

He added they expect the ice roads to open to the public in the coming weeks near the end of the month.

“Normally the first one to open up is the Stony Rapids to Fond-du-Lac, that’s the 85 kilometre stretch over land portion, that’s typically the first one to open up and then the others sort of follow suit,” said Shaheen.

Shaheen said generally ice roads open in early or mid February, however due to the recent cold snap the province experienced he said it could be possible to see the roads open to traffic at the end of this month.

“We anticipate that as a result of the colder weather that this will expedite the clearing of these roads,” he said.

The importance of ice roads to the communities they serve is something which the ministry is aware of and Shaheen said they do their best to get the roads open as soon as they can.

“If the weather is conducive to cold weather, where we can get the roads open earlier, we will,” he said.

(Photo Courtesy of Saskatchewan Highway Hotline Facebook)