Friday, December 21, 2012

Making Ice

Slender Spoon from Custom Jigs and Spin

The cold has finally arrived.  Last year at this time we were struggling for ice as the wind and weather had created a huge ice island on Mille Lacs separated by a few hundred yards of open water completely around the lake making travel to the hot areas impossible.  This year is completely different.  The lake froze a couple of weeks ago and with this weeks temperatures hovering around 0, the lake is definitely making ice.  Hunter's Point resort on the east side of Mille Lacs reports they have a road staked to both Sliver and Boot flats, 6 miles out from the resort.  With a good 7 - 9" of ice, I have my Polaris Razor all set to go, my new Thermal X is ready, the electronics are all charged up, it's just a matter of picking the right day this weekend.  The Razor is my side by side ATV with a roof, windshield, and a special mounting for my Lowrance HDS7 from the boat.  With an accurate Lakemaster chip, I use it as a large screen GPS where as it very accurately displays the bottom contours in 1 foot increments.  It makes searching for that spot on the spot much easier.  Everything is marketing these days and ice fishing has hit a crescendo to say the least.  In this world it's very popular to promote products through association as the ice fishing world has Team Ice.  A group of companies and guys promoting ice fishing, a great example is the Slender Spoon.  Early ice fishing video's have featured this lure as the killer bait for this year's hard water season.  Being promoted via a number of web forums, the Minneapolis area is all but sold out of these lures, a testament to the effectiveness of the media.  They are light spoon that exhibits a slow "tantalizing" drop that makes them irresistible to walleyes and perch.  I haven't bit on the hype yet as my winter tackle box is void of these, probably will have to pick up a couple, just in case! 

Christmas in China
I am finally settling back into a normal routine after my trip to China.  For some reason it's taken a long time to readjust to being back home, maybe it's simply that fact that we are in the shortest daylight time of the year.  Early Sunday morning was spent in the Mercy Hospital emergency room as I must have gotten into something that resulted in a severe allergic reaction, something I haven't experienced in over 30 years. I still think my trip made me more vulnerable.  Christmas is upon us and it seems as though it was just yesterday.  We will head back to Eleva and see my mom as well,  spend time with the relatives.  My friend Mark Applen is fishing Red Lake right now and is going to leave his wheel house at the resort.  Red Lake is about 5 hours north of Minneapolis, on the way to Lake of the Woods (LOTW).  Our plan is the Thursday after Christmas head back up and either fish Red or continue on to Baudette.  We made a few phone calls and everyplace is booked for next week so we decided to stay in his wheel house, something I have done in the past.  I like staying out on the ice however because the lakes are stained, they pretty well shut down after sundown.  Mark has Direct TV in the ice house, a nice Honda generator, we will have all the comforts of home!  The time between Christmas and New Years was the time my friend Tom Emmons, Tom McAtee, and I would rent a house on Mille Lacs.  With Tom gone, it's probably good to start a new tradition as Mark and I had a blast fishing LOTW last year and the 50 inch sturgeon he caught.  Because Christmas is on Tuesday and I leave on Thursday, next weeks post could be late, delayed because of fishing, pretty good excuse if you ask me!

I will leave you with a picture from the Hotel we stayed at in China.  Although not a terribly religious nation, China fully embraces the spirit of the holiday's, at least from the commercial point of it.  Snowmen and presents, stocking and tinsel, it's all pretty interesting from a Christian perspective.  I think that it proof that we are more the same than different, any excuse to have a celebration is just fine with me!  Merry Christmas and be safe.


Beaver Creek Cabins & Guide Service said...

Good to see you're on the mend.


Dave Anderson said...

No kidding! Going to drive right by your place on Wednesday night, heading for Red. Have a great Christmas Keith!!

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