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It's cold enough for annual ice harvest at New Hampshire lake, ice blocks saved for campers

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HOLDERNESS, New Hampshire — It's cold enough for annual tradition of harvesting lake ice at a New Hampshire campground.

Crews started sawing blocks for the Rockywold-Deephaven Camps in Holderness on Tuesday. The event goes back a century.

PHOTO: John Jurczynski loads ice blocks weighing 120 to 160 pounds from Squam Lake during the annual ice harvest Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015, in Sandwich, N.H. The tradition, which goes back a century, stores the ice in ice houses and uses them in the summer at the Rockywold-Deephaven camps instead of refrigeration units. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
John Jurczynski loads ice blocks weighing 120 to 160 pounds from Squam Lake during the annual ice harvest Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015, in Sandwich, N.H. The tradition, which goes back a century, stores the ice in ice houses and uses them in the summer at the Rockywold-Deephaven camps instead of refrigeration units. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)

It's a timely start, helped by very low temperatures. In 2013, the three-day harvest at Squam Lake didn't start until on Feb. 6, due to rain, warm temperatures and wind.

Instead of refrigeration units, campers use lake ice packed into insulated ice houses that keep the blocks frozen through summer. The 16-by-19-inch ice blocks weigh between 120 and 160 pounds each.

On their Facebook page Tuesday, organizers honored Norman Lyford, who headed out to the ice for his 70th year of harvesting. The posting said, "We are grateful that he continues to share his wisdom with us."

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PHOTO: John Jurczynski loads blocks of ice from Squam Lake during the annual ice harvest Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015, in Sandwich, N.H.  The tradition, which goes back a century, stores the ice in ice houses and uses them in the summer at the Rockywold-Deephaven camps instead of refrigeration units. (AP Photo/Jim Cole)
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