It could be when, not how much
Simon Donner has a nice post up describing the complexities governing sea ice extent, how other factors besides temperatures are important. Some time ago, Eli pointed out that not only was sea ice declining, but the time of the minimum was moving substantially later in September. With all the emphasis on sea ice extent (guilty, guilty, guilty) it is useful to return to that point
and take a look at how the Arctic is doing today
The later the minimum, the later the freeze up, the later the freeze up, the less time to grow new ice, and the easier to reach a minimum next year. Eli may up his bet with Stoat. 60 carrots??
UPDATE: Via the Scotsman comes the news from the NSIDC that sea ice reached its minimum in 2007 between the 16th and 20th of September. This leaves Eli in a bit of a quandry. If the day of the minimum went beyond the 20th, the Rabett was going to pile on his bet with Wm Connolley. OTOH, if it came earlier, he was going to gracefully retire to the carrot patch. The current strategy is to wait for a few days and see how steep or shallow the rebuilding is compared to future years. Advice o mice?
Overview of current sea ice conditions
Sea ice extent now stands at 4.18 million square kilometers (1.61 million square miles). This represents an increase of 50,000 square kilometers (19,000 square miles) compared to the value of 4.13 million square kilometers (1.59 million square miles) five-day running mean extent, observed on September 16, which appears to be the 2007 minimum.