Great news ice fishing fanatics! With another deep freeze or “polar whatever” upon us, we’ll be drilling holes for quite some time this year… Mid winter usually brings some hit and miss action to Chequamegon Bay, but great days still happen with a little perseverance. This weekend followed the script.
Josh and Acorn hit the ice Thursday on a scouting mission to find some fish for the upcoming weekend. In 3 hours of fishing, they iced a 27″ Lake Trout, 2 cohos, and a 17″ whitefish all on Kastmasters in 20′ to 30′ of water. Once again, Acorn came through with the fish of the day. That’s great looking bonus laker! They don’t stand a chance with that guy! With fish found, the guys headed for shore only to blow up an engine in one of the snowmobiles. The life of a guide… Never a dull moment!
After a night of turning wrenches, Josh guided Tim, Pat, Andy, Jarred, Dave, and Joe from the Wausau, WI area on Friday. Derek Leslie helped Josh out for a full day on Chequamegon Bay that produced 7 splake up to 19″ and a 20″ brown in 20′ to 40′ of water. All but one fish came on a tip-up rigged with a shiner, and the fish were super finicky all day further emphasizing the importance of multiple presentations this time of year with the “less is more” concept frequently outproducing aggressive tactics.
Saturday was a different story however as the crew from Wausau was rewarded for their persistence with a much more aggressive bite, and more fish on the ice. A great mixed bag including cohos up to 18″, browns up to 25″, a 17″ laker, a 17″ splake, a 24″ steelhead, a 27″ pike, and a dozen smelt all came jigging spoons in 10′ to 30′ of water. Kastmasters, Buckshots, and Vibratos all accounted for fish that were much more eager to chase a moving bait than the day before. What an awesome mess of fish!
Ice conditions continue to be the same as recent reports with a foot or more of ice covering the interior of the bay and new ice continuing to be made around the islands. Josh reports a few slushy pockets in areas with more snow, but nothing too bad. Snowmobile travel is still best with varying snow depths covering the bay. We’ll continue to repeat throughout the season… Whenever venturing onto new or unproven ice, be vigilant while stopping to check conditions frequently. Never take anything for granted. Have a great week everyone!