Monday, January 25, 2016

2nd Icefishing Outing of 2016

My buddy Jay and I  caught a BUNCH of fish...Mostly bluegills (some really nice ones!), some crappies and just a few bass.

I fished 2 ponds (I say "I", because Jay had to leave before I did because of a bad battery on his Vexilar...he didn't fish the 2nd pond).  Both ponds had  large areas cleared for hockey.  If you see NOT drill holes in those cleared areas.  Refrozen holes (and open holes, of course) can be very dangerous for the skaters (usually kids).  I met one kid yesterday who said somebody drilled a hole in the middle of their cleared area last year, and he was skating backwards and fell over he wears a helmet, but he still gets headaches and has other issues.  That sucks!  Other people had clearly fished both these ponds recently, but thankfully everyone stayed away from the cleared hockey areas.
It was interesting...Jay and I had one pond to ourselves.  After he left, I went to the other pond, and also had it to myself...for awhile.  Soon, it practically became a neighborhood party!!  Kids skating, parents and dogs roaming around, guys coming down to socialize and icefish.  The amount of recreation and socializing supported by that one pond was incredible, and really great to see!  Everyone was really friendly.  Kids were skating over and checking out my gear and watching me pull fish out of the water...I let them release the fish, which they thought was GREAT, several of them asked their parents to let them icefish, and one kid even DID fish for awhile, and caught a couple.  Smaller kids were coming over and poking sticks into my icehole, and their parents admonished them to leave me alone....but it was all good, and the fish were still hitting good the entire time.
It was an awesome day to be out on the ice!  :)

Oh...and at the first pond, a Muskrat swam under the ice, nosed my transducer puck for a few seconds before swimming on.  Pretty cool!  In the past, I've even had Muskrats swim right up into my icehole to get a few breaths before diving back underwater.

Monday, January 18, 2016

First Fish of 2016

I ice-fished Saturday, January 17.  Here in central Iowa, the temperature was 11 degrees F.  The ice on a local pond was 8" thick.

I drilled 7 holes in the ice, fished 3 of them.  I ended up catching 25+ Bluegills, 2 Largemouth Bass (13" and 14"), 2 Hybrid Sunfish, an 2 smallish Pumpkinseed Sunfish.  I was hoping for some Crappies, but did not encounter any on this trip.
First fish of 2016!