Friday, January 17, 2014

chum plus jig fishing equals feisty northern pike

Hi Folks, Been a nice month thus far for guiding ice fishing trips and the fishing has been very consistent. Been into chasing pike through the hard water.  Even after all of the rain over the weekend the ice is still in good shape.  We found 17" of solid black ice with a couple of inches of snow over the ice to provide nice walking conditions.  The recent rain did make the edges a little sketchy so caution is advised when walking or driving onto the ice.  We choose to walk yesterday though there were folks driving on the ice. So we set tip ups and jig fished.  Tipped the traps with live and dead golden shiners as well as wounded yellow perch.  We had 3 flags yesterday and landed 1 pike, lost another, and had one fish break us off.  Jig fishing was consistent with catching yellow perch.  We hooked two northern on the jig sticks and landed one.  I have been chumming the holes pretty heavily with chopped up bait and perch.  Really brings in the fish.  Every time the perch stop biting you know that a predator is around.  Loads of fun fighting a feisty pike on 2lb test on a soft jig pole.  Trout season opens on Saturday and I will now mix up my fishing between chasing northern and trout.  Have fun and be safe on the hard water.  Willy

Sunday, January 12, 2014

ice fishing in the rain

Hi Folks, Guided the hard water yesterday morning for northern pike and yellow perch.  Pretty interesting weather as it was 40 degrees out and raining steadily.  Seems like an oxymoron fishing on a frozen lake in the rain.  Weird weather winter with extreme temperature fluctuation.  There was 17" of good black ice and you definitely needed creepers for getting around on the ice.  We set a dozen tip ups baited with live and dead golden shiners and wounded yellow perch we had caught jig fishing.  Multiple flags off the get go but the fish kept dropping the bait.  Our first pike of the day was caught on a fire tiger Hali jig tipped with maggots and fished over holes that I had chummed with chopped up bait.  Landed the 25" fish on 2lb test and a really soft jig stick.  Lots of fun.  The largest pike of the day came on a tip-up that was baited with a perch was a nice healthy 32" female pike.  Nice looking fish.  The northern fishing has been consistent and we have been locating pike over weed beds in 8' to 15' of water.  Catching perch just not very many large ones.  Trout season opens next weekend.  Have Fun, Willy

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Happy New Year form the northern pike

Hi Folks, Heck of a way to begin the New Year fishing in minus 14 degree air temperatures.  Plenty of ice here in the Stowe area as we found 15" today pike fishing. Steady south wind that made it feel a bit cooler.   Good solid black ice and we drove my truck out on the lake.  We popped a dozen holes for tip-up dressed with dead golden shiners and yellow perch.  We dead have a few live Goldens but they did receive any love from a pike.  All of the bait was hooked with #2 red hooks.  Big fan of the red hooks in ice fishing.  We vertically fished from large pop up heated shanty for perch and northern.  Lots of chumming in the holes with fat head minnows that were dead and alive as well as yellow perch cut up.  Used Hali jigs and Bibbits with red hooks tipped with maggots and minnows.  We located all of our fish in 10' to 12' of water.  We landed 3 pike measuring 24", 28" and 30".  Lost one other fish and had what appeared to be a large pike get wrapped up on some wood on the bottom and we broke it off, bummer.  It seems when it is really cold the fish do like dead baits.  Less energy expenditure in feeding.  Anywho, fun morning on the ice and real challenge with the weather.  Looking  forward to lots of ice fishing this year and should have good ice everywhere.  Have Fun, Willy