Thursday, December 19, 2013

December's Cold Moon

Full Moon Over the Pole Shed
The Native Americans had a tradition of naming each of the full moons such as March's Worm Moon or October's Harvest Moon.  December's Full Moon bears the name of Cold Moon and occurred on December 16th of this week.  Interestingly enough the shortest day of the year is the is December 21st and the full moon on the 19th will represent the longest moon lit night of the year.  This week is as crazy as they all seem as Sunday was filled with picking up Lory at the airport port as he returned from his trip to China.  This was at 2:30 in the afternoon, brought him home then turned right around and drove back to pick up 2 business associates from Taiwan at 6:30.  The Taiwanese are not used to the cold and it was quite entertaining to see their reactions.  Two days of meetings with them, dinner each night, Wednesday would see me boarding a flight to Denver (where I am writing this from).  When I travel to China visiting them at their factory we have a tradition of going to the 101, a Taiwanese based  restaurant near the hotel.  The food is excellent and if you look back at some of my previous posts their is a picture of me with the owner.  While here I wanted to take them to a genuine Minnesota place to eat and decided on the  Tavern on Grand in St. Paul.  I believe they serve the best walleye around town and offer it in various forms such as walleye cakes, walleye spring rolls, pan fried, blackened, broiled, and served with deep fried dill pickles or their lefse dish, you can't beat it.  Scrambling to get things done on Tuesday night, I rounded the corner by my garage and was taken back by the beautiful scene created by the full Cold Moon's effect on the new fallen snow.  Grabbing the camera I snapped this picture, a winter wonderland right in my back yard.  If you see notice the bright object just down and left of the moon, this is the Planet Jupiter as they travel together through the night.  Wow.

Nice Sunfish
With the cold weather and snow it's was questionable whether I's get out ice fishing or not.  With a ton of snowplowing to do before Sunday. Luckily my neighbor Tom stopped over about 1:00 to see what was going on, that's all it took as we planned to go to Pelican for the evening.  Not sure of the ice or snow conditions we loaded up the Razor and headed out.  Approaching the lake there were trucks on the ice!  I have been keeping track of ice conditions up north at Mille Lacs and Red Lake, with the snow it hasn't froze much at all.  Well, I'm not driving on the ice so we pulled off the Razor and headed to an area we have done pretty good in the past, about 3/4 mile from the landing.  Drilling our holes I was pleasantly surprised at the 16 or more inches of ice.  Even more interesting was the ice was virtually devoid of any deep snows.  I have at least 6 inches in the yard but there was about an inch on the ice.  It was actually evenly distributed so it wasn't the wind that blew it off.   I suspect the early snow caused water to cover the lake and it refroze allowing it to create the fairly thick ice so early.  Honestly, I would not have been afraid to drive out but with another week of cold weather, it's should be perfect by now.  We did get a lot of little ones however both Tom and I each nailed a nice sunfish.  OK, only about 8 inches but heck, better than 99% of what we've been getting the last couple of years. 

Returning on Friday, Mark and I are planning on going to Red Lake Friday afternoon to pull the wheel house up to JR's.  A text from him yesterday didn't sound very good as the resort was pulling all wheel houses off the lake and restricting travel via snowmobile or chained ATV's at this time.  Apparently the slush is real bad and has created an undesirable situation.  Now if they didn't have any snow and accounting for the low temperatures, the lake should have 20+ inches of ice by now.  The snow unfortunately insulates the ice from freezing very fast so Pelican lake here next to home has much more ice than Red Lake which is 4.5 hours straight north of here.  Even with the many sub -20 degree nights, it's still not making ice like we need.  We are keeping daily updates and if we get the all clear, Mark and I plan on leaving Friday afternoon.  If not, well hopefully after Christmas will find better conditions.  All I know is the fishing reports from Red are excellent and we are missing out!Merry Christmas to everyone and we'll see what the weekend brings.

1 comment:

Beaver Creek Cabins & Guide Service said...

What, you didn't take your friends to the Onamia VFW for walleye fingers? I suppose the culture was a bit too Minnesotan for their liking.

Watch the slush when you come up's a real sh*t show. Travel is awful and the ice thickness is all over the board. Make sure to bring a tow rope to either get pulled out or help someone else get pulled out of the overflow.