Angler’s Log 2013:01:27 – Arms like Jelly

After a week of arctic temperature, we finally have some very nice ice conditions on local lakes and ponds. This mean I finally get to put my auger and my recently acquired Humminbird 345c DI to work.

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On Wednesday, I took the 345 over to by Pondboy’s and we gave it a official test run on the pond. He brought his finder so we can compare and to play with the setting in the “Flasher” mode. I will try and put together a detail review after a few more use but fo far it’s been pretty good.

Saturday morning, I set out for Blackwell forest preserve for some ice fishing with my cousin Betty and her boyfriend Cody. She’s never been ice fishing and wanted to experience it. The night before I told them to dress warm and in layers because it will be cold. I almost LOL when I saw them around 7AM. She’s wearing a skirt leggings and he’s got a pair of casual shoes on like they are going to a party. LOL!

Anyway, I drilled about 15 holes before I found some activities under the ice. To make sure we maximize the slow bite, I put minnows under a float and drop them in. Nothing was happening for almost an hours, so my guests decided to use the restroom. As soon as they got off the ice, a crappie shows up to play. After my cousin returns, things quiet down again.

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Another 45 minutes passed without a fish and my guests decided to take my advice and leave before they get frost bites. The lesson here is to dress appropriately when you are going to ice fish. Listen to these 2 Dupage Angler Podcasts for some great tips on getting on the ice:

Ice Fishing With DuPage Angler – Part 1
Ice Fishing With DuPage Angler – Part 2

After they left, I put away most of the stuff and head to a different part of the lake with the bare essentials and drilled about 20 holes. These were more of exploratory drills to find out what it’s like down under the ice. I also drill on some deeper area and was marking some fish in the bottom 6 ft range. I settle in on a spots and started to fish again and the fish was nice enough to come out and play. Yes, they are little guys but they are still fun and I thank them for making my Saturday morning.

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Sunday is kids day, I headed out with Brendon and Matthieu for some action on the ice. We started at a near by lake but was unable to mark fish under the ice so we head back to Blackwell where I fished on Saturday. Today I decided to try for those suspended fish in the deeper water but they were not biting. So I move the kids near the weed line and let them go at it with the left over minnows. They were getting bites and was missing on the hook set. Finally Brendon was able to hook up with 2 of them and here’s one that he didn’t drop on the ice. We had to get that one quickly back in the hole.

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We ended the day at McDonalds with a few Fillet-O-Fish and fries.

Now let’s get down to business.

Angler’s Log:

1.) I am officially ready for spring. I have my kayak and it is ready to go. My 345c will work nicely as a finder on the kayak as well.

IMG_28662.) I put a old fly reel on the ice rod and spool it up with some backing and ice lines. It is looking very cool and working very nice. Not really happy with the Fenwick rod though but it’ll do for now. I am still noticing a little line twist, but I hope that will go away the next time I am out with it.  If you got a old fly reel sitting around, you might want to give this a try.

 

3.) I got my 9’6″ light noodle rod set up and ready to go for drifting the river. I’m planning on taking it to the river soon with some hair jig and do some float-n-fly action.

4.) I saw some guys brought a small propane stove on the ice today. They were cooking noodle soup and it was smelling great! One of these days I’m going to try that.  Maybe we can fire up a Weber and put some brats on the fire. 😀

5.) My Fish count since the last log entry:

  • Bluegill(s): 1
  • Crappie(s): 2
  • Walleye(s): 6

Also, a special count for the kids:

  • Walleye(s): 2

Well, I did not catch a lot of fish. But it was a very productive 2 weeks period for me. The only thing I’m not liking is this really sore arm from all the drilling I did. But it’s good exercise and I’ll see it as training for future kayak paddling.

Until next time.