As we flew along the Lake Ontario shoreline near Sodus Bay, NY this past Friday, we got a quick shot of the shoreline using a mobile phone. As you can see there is no evidence of pack ice along the shore. Compare this with the second photograph showing the more typical ice pack, taken on January 2015 from Durand-Eastman Beach. It is only about thirty miles west of this location; you can see a dramatic difference.
Year-to-year ice levels will almost always vary. However, the overall trend is for less Great Lakes ice. You can the view graphics showing change over the years, based on scientific data at NOAA’s website.