Wednesday, January 18, 2012

cold one on the ice

Hi Folks, Guided the hard water today and it was not for the faint of heart.  Visited a pike lake just south of Stowe for the day.  Wind was blowing really hard out of the west after a cold front just blasted into town.  Made setting up the shanty a challenge, but we managed.  Two of the anchor screw to the shanty were bent by the wind.  Air temperatures dropped throughout the day and it was full on winter outside of the shanty.  Nice having a heated shelter on cold winter day.  12" of solid black ice with a few inches of hard snow pack on top.  Pretty easy getting around.  We set tip-ups for pike baited with golden shiners and and live and dead yellow perch.  All of our sets were in 8' to 12' of water and just off the bottom.  We chummed and jigged in the shanty.  Lots and lots of little perch on fire tiger hali jigs tipped with maggots.  When we tipped the jigs with minnows we caught fewer but larger perch and even a pike.  Pretty exciting catching a northern on a light jig stick that is spooled with 2lb test.  We had 3 flags with pike and a few wind flags as well.  No monster fish today but pretty good action and a satisfying feeling of battling the elements on a hardy winter day.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy

Friday, January 6, 2012

noisy ice

Hi Folks, Went up north last night with a long time guest to chase walleyes through the ice.  We had a solid 8" of black ice that was covered by an inch of snow.  Creepers would have been a good idea as it was slippery walking.  We set up late afternoon and fished into dark.  Our tip-ups were placed from 7' of water out to 25' of water.  Always a good idea to place tips ups in a line when fishing in the dark.  Much easier to find.  The ice was groaning, moaning , and cracking last night.  Pretty cool, but a little unnerving if you are not used to it.  Well, the fishing was slow.  We had one pike break us off on a tip up.  No steel leaders as we were targeting walleye and not northerns.  8lb fluorocarbon leaders do not stand much of a chance against a pike's set of teeth.  We did land one really big yellow perch and have a couple other flags.  Nothing jigging as we worked brightly colored 1/8oz. jig heads off the bottom that were tipped with shiners.  Never deterred and I will be back after it again shortly.  Remember to clean your gear and keep the non-native species at home.  Have Fun, Willy