1/22 Bite Me

Don't cast away! Get the latest tip-ups on fishing the hard water.

1/22 Bite Me

Postby RonG » Jan Sun 22, 2017 11:17 pm

It's January. I don't care if you think the "earth has a fever", Al Gore. Bite me! There will be ice to fish from every winter for the rest of my days, you stupid Grinch that will NEVER steal winter.

I woke up this morning with fever to ice fish and decided to scratch the itch somewhere west of O'Hare and east of Omaha. I had never noticed the incoming jets so loud there. Probably because it was Sunday afternoon and all the vacationers were returning from their ski trips.

Image

Arriving, it looked a little better than six days ago when I was fishing here in the pouring rain. That's about half the distance of 4" standing water to walk through. I don't believe the temps have dropped below freezing in the last six days either. :shock: I have yet to auger a hole in this pond. I've only used the ones someone else augered eight days ago and they are still open (and enlarged from this warm spell).


I wanted to start out in the daytime for a few reasons. 1) to see what exactly I'm venturing out on. 2) hopefully to get some perch and bass that don't like to play at night 3) get some normal fishing in before the nocturnal roaches come crawling out of every nook and cranny and hog the action

First victim

Image

I'm not quite sure what these mutants are but, man, there are alot of them here. Not quite bluegill. Not quite green sunfish. Definitely part human. Let's just call them screwgills for now. Obviously, their parents are quite loose with who or what they reproduce with.

I set up my lonely tip-up for the first time this season. No fish, but one flag and a stolen minnow. I did get one rinky dinky bass jigging.

Image


Then my main target for today

Image
Image
Image

So beautiful of a fish, you get 3 shots of her. A 2nd smaller perch a few minutes later

Image

Lest I not forget, these creeps

Image

Surprisingly they don't show up much in the daytime. My daytime ratio was only six roaches to 17 screwgills. They went bonkers when the sun set with 24 more roaches to only six more gills. At one point, fishing in 9' of water, my entire screen was solid red with roaches, from the ice down to the bottom. I caught many only a foot or two under the ice and went a long stretch without touching my reel. I had 2' of line out, would drop my jig and slowly raise it, catching roach after roach just under the ice.

Come on in, the water's fine. :arrow:
User avatar
RonG
Rex Rgis Piscator
 
Posts: 5370
Joined: Jan Thu 22, 2009 3:34 pm
Location: In your favorite spots

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby catchafew » Jan Mon 23, 2017 9:37 am

Nice report Ron. Punching through the ice with your spud bar, that's pretty sobering.
User avatar
catchafew
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 2589
Joined: Mar Sat 05, 2011 6:40 pm
Location: Downers Grove

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby SmalliesNEyes » Jan Mon 23, 2017 9:50 am

Can't believe you're still getting out on and finding safe ice after the last week of warmer weather and rain. Crazy! I'll probably wait until after this week to try and get back out there. Most ponds I've driven by in my neighborhood have open water scattered all over them, and I'd rather not go for a cold water dip.
User avatar
SmalliesNEyes
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 1667
Joined: Mar Sat 12, 2016 11:24 pm
Location: Western Burbs, IL

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby jmdog2003 » Jan Mon 23, 2017 9:58 am

Takes a real man to stand on ice in these conditions to catch fish. I commend you.
jmdog2003
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 3064
Joined: Apr Fri 13, 2012 7:50 pm
Location: Naperville

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby RonG » Jan Mon 23, 2017 11:23 am

catchafew wrote: Punching through the ice with your spud bar, that's pretty sobering.
SmalliesNEyes wrote:Can't believe you're still getting out on and finding safe ice after the last week of warmer weather and rain. Crazy!
jmdog2003 wrote:Takes a real man to stand on ice in these conditions to catch fish. I commend you.


If you have the time, you can spud your way through 3 feet of ice. It's just a matter of how many whacks it takes to do so. Going through in 2 or 3 hard whacks in precisely the same spot spells danger for me. Knowing there was water pooled up on the ice around at the shore for almost a week had me assuming there was no access and I didn't fish Thurs, Fri or Sat. When I went on Sun to see the what was left of the pond, I was pleasantly surprised to find safe ice and even a way to get to the ice from shore. I've got my ice checking tools (spud, auger), ice spikes around my neck and life vest on for entering and exiting or moving to a new area. The only real risk yesterday was getting wet feet at the shore.

It's the reality of what is under your feet at all times, and not perception of what you think the ice should be. I've safely fished on rivers, ponds, lakes and LM harbors where there was "scary" open water not far away. Cold temps are just as dangerous to me as a warm spell if you are going to use assumptions and not check the ice. e.g. - the first time I fished the Porky Perch pond. We had single digit temps for a week. Fresh snow was 3 days old and there were no footprints on the snow. Yet, I saw a spot over 20' of water where the water was flowing up through a hole in the ice much like you'd see water flowing up through a street sewer cover during some kind of flood situation. At the time, I was perplexed considering I knew it wasn't an auger hole with the week of cold and no footprints there for days. Later I researched and found the place is a geological rarity and has calcareous springs all over the place. Literally flowing underground rivers that no cold will freeze. (there's a sister pond to it I found that never freezes over all winter long because of the same underground water activity)

Know your bodies of water, check, check and check the ice. If in doubt, I'll spud an entire perimeter of an area to fish. If I decide to move out of the perimeter, I'll resume checking. Lastly, don't blindly go running out on some local body of water because you see a fishing report like this. I'm sure a lot of the local ice is poor right now.
User avatar
RonG
Rex Rgis Piscator
 
Posts: 5370
Joined: Jan Thu 22, 2009 3:34 pm
Location: In your favorite spots

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby SpecialEd » Jan Mon 23, 2017 12:55 pm

Sage advice.

Not sure if you read the info about Tony Boshold going through on Channel Lake this weekend, but it's terrifying.

"40 minutes of terror... This was 3" where we went in, 4.5-5.5 where we were fishing. We were about 20' apart when we went down. The lake started undulating and turned to ice cubes and we went down simultaneously. He was immediately disoriented. We got together and I told him to follow... He grabbed and pulled me down and kicked each other. I told him to back off and then he dunked while I continued to shore. He dunked again and rolled over and back stroked. I finally felt the ice slide under my belly and then my legs. I was spent. I couldn't go back and he couldn't hear me or figure out which way was which at this point with all his noise of swimming and his ears in water. At this point help was on the way... Someone finally heard us. I just kept talking to him. The entire lake went to sponge. The air boat rescue never got on solid ice just busted all the way to us and to shore. I'm sure he heard the sirens which kept him motivated and I must say first time I was happy to hear them."

-Tony's account of him and another fisherman going through and getting rescued together.
User avatar
SpecialEd
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 1783
Joined: Mar Sun 11, 2007 11:48 am
Location: Naperville

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby DasGoby » Jan Mon 23, 2017 1:14 pm

Obviously the ice on Channel wasn't good ice. 4.5 inches of good ice doesn't just buckle.

This is my first year fishing with a spud bar and it has really made me more comfortable. Every time out I've take the time to check carefully and its allowed me to be comfortable in conditions I might otherwise consider a little iffy. For me breaking through with the spud in 2 wacks would signal danger but 3 wacks is OK, just signaling caution. I think I can get through 4 inches in 3 wacks but I'm pretty strong and my spud is pretty heavy (I think it is 10#).
DasGoby
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 1385
Joined: Mar Fri 05, 2010 2:57 pm
Location: Ann Arbor, MI

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby RonG » Jan Mon 23, 2017 1:44 pm

Well that's scary when it happens to an ice pro. :shock: I remember 2? years ago an experienced guide went through on his home turf of Lake Superior and died. A friend of mine knows Tony and I'm sure killerpidgeon does too.

I mentioned above that I had my life vest on yesterday. Since I'm normally fishing solo, I've even worn my farmer john wetsuit bottoms doing some late season whacking and stacking. :idea: Fishing without a spud bar is just dumb. It's saved me some swim time on many occasions and also lets me get out and into some great fishing at other times when I have unfounded mental doubts based on recent air temps.

Maybe I'll kayak out to the spot on Channel Lake and get myself some free ice gear. I can't decide on a wetsuit or my drysuit for the mission. :angel: Oh, crap. I don't have a 2017 Chain sticker yet...
User avatar
RonG
Rex Rgis Piscator
 
Posts: 5370
Joined: Jan Thu 22, 2009 3:34 pm
Location: In your favorite spots

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby DasGoby » Jan Mon 23, 2017 2:20 pm

Two other things that have made a difference for me this year are 1) lack of snow fall and 2) being able to see and monitor conditions on my local pond on a near daily basis. Snow over 4-5 inches of ice makes me very nervous indeed.
DasGoby
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 1385
Joined: Mar Fri 05, 2010 2:57 pm
Location: Ann Arbor, MI

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby SpecialEd » Jan Mon 23, 2017 4:11 pm

RonG wrote:Well that's scary when it happens to an ice pro. :shock: I remember 2? years ago an experienced guide went through on his home turf of Lake Superior and died. A friend of mine knows Tony and I'm sure killerpidgeon does too.


I have been on the ice before when it has gone from hard clear to nearly honeycomb slush. It can happen in a matter of an hour or two and take place from under the ice just as fast as from above.

Who knows if current or rising/falling water levels had anything to do with it but it sounds like crazy shit if they were in the water for 40 minutes. :shock:
User avatar
SpecialEd
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 1783
Joined: Mar Sun 11, 2007 11:48 am
Location: Naperville

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby RonG » Jan Mon 23, 2017 4:21 pm

You can search online and find it in the newspapers now. It sounds like Tony B. got out quickly and the other dude was in the water for 30 minutes and had to be extracted, but lived.

Probably not the best of judgement. Channel's not that big and there has been a ton of flow through it with the thawing and all the rain. I was thinking of trying the FoxRiv on Saturday (not ice fishing!) and saw the flow was way up there at 3000cfs. Saturday, the day before their accident was bad--sunny and I even got a 60 degree temp in my car while driving.
User avatar
RonG
Rex Rgis Piscator
 
Posts: 5370
Joined: Jan Thu 22, 2009 3:34 pm
Location: In your favorite spots

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby Skifish1 » Jan Mon 23, 2017 10:53 pm

I was floating on the Kish Saturday and the Fox Sunday. One bass to show for it.

High and muddy rivers, no way I was going to get on ice. I'd rather walk on 2.5" of hard cold weather ice than 5-6" of soft ice.

A lot of 3-4" ice shelfs in cool formations all over the place sitting on shore where a solid river broke apart and went high and then receded 2-3 feet.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
User avatar
Skifish1
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 4897
Joined: Nov Thu 03, 2011 10:54 pm

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby RonG » Jan Tue 24, 2017 2:40 pm

Image

Awesome pic! I had seen that, I would have activated my shields immediately and quietly drifted away from that destroyer


Image
User avatar
RonG
Rex Rgis Piscator
 
Posts: 5370
Joined: Jan Thu 22, 2009 3:34 pm
Location: In your favorite spots

Re: 1/22 Bite Me

Postby Rambler » Jan Tue 24, 2017 2:42 pm

RonG = highly active imagination. :lol:
Keep calm and fish on...

There's a fine line between fishing and just sitting there looking stupid
User avatar
Rambler
Ichthyoid Artimus
 
Posts: 4910
Joined: Sep Wed 03, 2014 1:25 pm
Location: Near West suburbs


Return to Ice Fishing

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests