February passed by with only one short ice-fishing trip to show. The fish were as negative as I have ever seen them, usually running away from my presentation as fast as they could. I felt very lucky to manage just 3 small bluegills out of that trip!
So, I sure am glad its MARCH! I went icefishing yesterday (March 1, 2015) with my buddy Jay.
The pond we selected treated us well when flyfishing it this past summer, but we icefished it one day last winter and only managed a combined total of ONE fish for a couple hours of effort. The only fish we marked that day (besided the one caught) were TINY fish not interested in eating. Flash forward to yesterday. I was the first to arrive at the pond, and drilled 5 holes across one end of the pond. I marked fish in 3 of the 5 holes. Good sign. As Jay pulled up and started unloading his gear, I dropped a tungsten jig tipped with a waxworm down one hole, and immediately had a fish on. Then I missed a couple, and then landed another by the time Jay walked out on the ice.
We did well. I don't know Jay's totals, but by the time I left @ 5pm, I'd landed at least 50 Bluegills, 5 Pumpkinseed Sunfish, 5 Crappies, 5 Bass, and at least 10 Hybrid Sunfish. Fantastic! The fish were mostly VERY positive, often charging the lure from 4' away and striking immediately.
The bass weren't big....probably all less than 12". The bluegills weren't very big either, probably topping out at 7.5", although I've caught bigger ones there during the summer. The Pumpkinseeds were pretty decent, fought REALLY well, and are pretty rare to catch while icefishing. In fact, they were the first ones Jay and I had ever caught through the ice. The crappies were healthy.