A cold, snowy winter is causing plenty of unusual sights on land, and it’s doing much the same to the Great Lakes.

And if current conditions continue, some parts of the Grand River watershed could find themselves in a similar situation as in 2009 – when Canadian Coast Guard icebreakers were called in to break up ice jams near Dunnville.

Approximately 76 per cent of the Great Lakes are currently frozen over.

Some projections suggest that the lakes could reach the record ice coverage levels set in 1979, when 97 per cent of all water was iced over.

If anywhere close to that level of freezing occurs on Lake Erie, says a Grand River Conservation Authority spokesperson, melting snow will quickly pose a problem.

“When we get the spring melt, it starts to melt and rush down the river,” Dave Schultz tells CTV News.

“The problem is, it gets to the mouth of the river and there’s nowhere for it to go because Lake Erie is iced in.”

Even if ice jams do not occur, officials expect the sheer amount of melting snow heading for Ontario waterways to cause high water levels in both the Grand River watershed and Great Lakes this year.