Lousy wind forcing I think is in part responsible for the copious ice formation in the previous version of the forcing/model. I have taken QuikScat (satellite-derived) winds for Lake Superior and included it in the production of the wind forcing. this should dramatically increase wind speeds over the open lake, especially in seasons when we don't have open water wind estimates from the buoys.
The buoy data and the QuikScat data compare remarkably well. I've always thought of QS winds as only a step or two removed from magic, and am always amazed that the technology works at all, much less works well.