Welcome to the Ice Force IceBlaster, your 2x/week email with the best ice fishing info IN THE WORLD! Enjoy!
Today’s Top 6
1. Jumpin’ on the ice bandwagon.
Couple headlines this week:
How Ice Fishing Suddenly Got Hot
> What used to be a masochistic, all-male exercise in…”suffering and endurance,” has been transformed into a comfy, warm, civilized pastime enjoyed by men and women alike.
> Sophisticated video and sonar systems for snooping on fish look like implements the National Security Agency would like to have.
> Yet despite all the nifty, sometimes pricy gear, ice fishing remains a proposition cheaper than summer fishing, for the simple reason that, to do it, you don’t need to have a boat.
Outfitters see a vast and growing ice-fishing market
> 1,500 years after the first confirmed knowledge of humans making holes in the ice to fish, the pursuit has moved…from survivalist sustenance to a gadget-rich sport that can be enjoyed in shorts and shirtsleeves in an insulated trailer.
Yep, different now:
> Matt Teske, marketing manager at Dick’s Sporting Goods: “The days of sitting on a five-gallon bucket in a Carhartt jacket are going away. It’s about technology and comfort.”
> About $260 million was spent on icefishing gear in 2012, an increase of nearly 10 percent over 2011.
> Tom Mackin, president of Rapala: “We’re hearing from major retail partners that they’re having their best ice-fishing season ever.”
Peeps ain’t doin’ too bad neither:
2. Hillbillies Ice Hole Bar.
Ice fishing in a bar? Of course! But dice, drinking, fishing – all covered by the Wall Street Journal?? How do we get that job!
Who needs hockey….
Never seen this before:
Sorta cool, sorta weird and unnatural….
Unless that’s a giant envelope:
6. Red-eyed creetch?
We talkin’ fishin’ or….?
Dude: Wolves can’t put deer in trees, mang!
Cool shot of StrikeMasters:
1. MI: state-record white perch.
Aaron Slagh, Muskegon Lake, 1.93-pound white perch, 13.25 inches long:
3. MN: Last chance for Classic.
5. MN: Art Shanties? Make it a date.
6. ON: Lower Rideau Lake derby.
7. WI: Stroschein, Sinatra, whitefish.
> “Still have a few spots left for our annual Whitefish Weekend this weekend! Call 920-743-5731 to reserve your spot…”
8. MN: Lake Elmo derby Sunday.
‘Sconnie spearing dudes cryin’ in their beers.
> “Yesterday in Alaska: almost 40F, no hut required.”
Meanwhile, negative digits throughout the rest of the Ice Belt….
> “One place that surprised me earlier was the number of people on the ice on Lind Coulee near Potholes Reservoir. This is the first time I have ever seen anyone fishing here, and it continues to be a great place to go to catch good numbers of quality perch through the ice.”
2. WI: Milwaukee Bay.
3. Eastern Canada: big splake.
Hybrid of a brookie and laker, beauties:
4. OH: Panfish goin’ on Bresler.
6. MN: Mille Lacs.
More big perch ‘n’ morning ‘eyes. Tony Roach’s audio report for today here.
> 30-33’ – jumbo perch; walleyes around same depth but just off structure.
Deals of the Day
Tip of the Day
Ted Pilgrim and Tony Boshold:
> “Often, the best way to find and catch these fish – especially early and late in winter – is to drill holes over water no deeper than 15 feet. This is the shallow littoral zone that holds a vast majority of small panfish, bullheads and other food species….”
> “The critical first step in locating fish in these shallow lakes is to simply select the zones where contour maps show the greatest concentrations of points, humps and other structure. Usually, unless expansive vegetation grows in the 6- to 12-foot range, I’ll avoid large areas of uniform depth.”
> “It’s not at all unusual to cut holes and catch fish within casting distance of shore. Especially in lakes where no other discernable points, vegetation, or structure exists, these shallow rocky banks can gather loads of feeding fish.”
Quote of the Day
All I want to do is help get kids off of video games and onto the ice.
– Chisago Lake NAIFC Open winner Greg Sullwold, as told to the IceBlaster. Also said:
> I’ll show anybody my winning baits. All this secrecy over who can catch the biggest panfish? Seriously?
So here you go – tx Greg!
Shot of the Day
Bee-you-tee-full laker posted to Twitter:
GET OUT AND STAY OUT ICE-HEADS!