Thinning ice causes shanties to break through the ice on the Big Eau Pleine

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MOSINEE, Wis. (WSAW) -- The Wisconsin DNR is investigating several reports of shanties breaking through the ice on the Big Eau Pleine.

Warden Paul Leezer said rain and temperature fluctuations resulted in thinning ice. He said right now it is not safe to venture onto thin ice to retrieve a shanty. And he urged anglers in the area to wait until ice conditions improve.

"No, we never had this happen to us before so there's a first time for everything," said Brandon Karlen, who had to help his uncle get his ice shanty after it broke through the ice near Eau Pleine County Park. "Couple shacks went down so we got the news. Saw it on Facebook actually, that's how we found out, so we came out here and helped him pull his shack out."

It's unclear how many shanties went through the ice.

"There was a good amount. We drove past earlier, they were just pointing them out like oh there's one, there's two, there's three. We didn't see his right away, then we got word that his was under," said Karlen. "One side tipped in, and luckily it wasn't all in so it was little bit easier to pull it out. A good three-quarters of it was underwater."

If you own an ice shack that has gone through or is partially submerged, please report it so the DNR can keep track of where they are.

Ice shack owners are responsible for the removal of any shack that goes through the ice.

"We took two four-wheelers, hooked up two winches, actually got one farther down into the ice and ended up winching it out that way. Tied a strap around it, and yeah it pulled out. Better than we expected," said Karlen. "There was a couple other guys here and a couple other guys swung up by us. It was really nice, they offered a hand to help."