We live an hour from the eastern end of Lake Ontario. The lake plays a large role in the amount of snow we get each winter. Unless it freezes over, or in large part, the winds pick up moisture and drop it to the east and southeast. The wind fishtails, so it can be snowing here and not 15 miles north of here.
At this, the eastern edge, at Sandy Island Beach near Pulaski, ice barriers form through the winter. They become covered with sand from wave action as they form, and they are slow to melt because of this covering.
Last week Joli and I took a long walk along the shore, all the way to the South Sandy Pond outlet. Tomorrow you will see that Joli doesn't mind water temperature one bit.