Wednesday, November 26, 2014

First Hole Fished

First Ice
Determined to get out on Saturday I lined up my neighbor Tom as we decided to try a lake north of Cambridge Minnesota called Lake Nunya.  With the below zero temperatures earlier in the week the ice had to be at least 4 inches, easily enough to walk out and drill some holes.  Saturday was very nice temperature wise, in the mid 30's so there wasn't a need to drag any houses out and simply fish out in the open.  Stopping at St. Francis we loaded up with crappie minnows and waxies as the latest 2013 test nets showed Lake Nunya being full of 10 - 12 inch crappies.  Arriving at the lake and using my cell phone Navionics map app showing the deepest part of the lake was about 1/2 mile walk across the ice so we took off.  There were a couple of guys on the ice which was a good sign, hopefully they were catching fish.  I had brought along my ice spud to test the thickness as we walked but it soon became apparent that the ice was quite solid, measuring around 5 - 6 inches. Arriving in the area we wanted to fish I noticed a guy had drilled a bunch of holes about 25 feet apart for a long ways across the basin.  Deciding it would be a lot easier to fish the ready drilled holes I walked up and first asked how's he doing then asked if he'd mind if I would fish his holes and his response, go ahead and have at it.  There must have been over 30 holes over a 1000 feet, I started fishing each one (hench forth my title for this week).  The lake is about 8 feet deep and because it's part of a small creek flowing into a larger river, there is plenty of oxygen to prevent any winter kills like we had last year.  Fishing from 2:00 to 5:00 I marked only a couple of fish that didn't stay on the screen long enough to even give the impression there was a chance to coax it to bite.  Having completely struck out, we headed back the half mile across the lake to the truck.  A quick stop at the Gander Mountain in Blaine forced me to buy a  Custom Jigs and Spins Pro Slender Spoon in the gold/sunrise claw pattern which looks like it would be a great color for Red Lake or Lake of the Woods.  I guess one can never have enough baits in your tackle box!  After putting my stuff away for the night ended up fixing the fuel leak in my tractor.  Being nice out I decided to take a spin around the neighborhood and ended up at Mike Claffey's place where I met 2 other friends Wade and Shaun Lind.  Telling of my fishing adventure of earlier in the day they were flabbergasted.  "You went to Lake Nunya, that's our lake?" to which my answer was nope...and what's Lake Nunya.  Wade says that it's what we call the lake when someone asks where'd ya catch them......Lake Nunya Business!

Slender spoon
It's interesting that the above picture of the lake looks alot like it was done in black and white.  Actually it was taken towards the end of the day and it was pretty gloomy out as the temperatures were in the upper 30's.  We had just tied a record for consecutive days below freezing for November at 12.  The early cold weather has made it interesting times for ice fishing as it's been a number of years since we have had walkable ice this early.  The further north you go the thicker the ice is yet it's still not enough for me to feel comfortable driving my ATV out.  Even at Red Lake there has been guys going through the ice on their machines.  The long weekend was looking like we might get up to Red Lake to haul up our wheel houses and try for some walleyes before the December 1st slots and possession limits change but that has fallen apart.  The nice thing about Red Lake early in the season is that one doesn't have to walk very far out to get to the first structure break and catch walleyes.  Russ was talking about going to Lake Winnibigoshish and I am waiting for a report from him to check out plan B.  Plan C is maybe head towards Alexandria and try to locate some nice bluegills or crappies. Everything is sort of up in the air and it may be Thursday night before I know exactly where I'll be fishing.  I am looking at possibly bring my ice house up to Red Lake on either December 13th or at the latest December 20th as long as my brother Steve can get away or my friend Keith Holtan can get off work.  It will more than likely depend on the weather as we have lots of plans but time does fly.  Decisions, Decisions..........  I guess the good news is that in years past we were not even getting out until after Christmas and in fact one year my friend Pete and I were hammering the walleyes on the north end of Mille Lacs through December 6th before the lake started to freeze.  Anyway, for anyone going out, just be careful!

Thanksgiving is Thursday and a time to give thanks to of families, friends, our health, and country. Getting older puts these things in greater perspective as one becomes more aware of the limited time we have to be thankful.  God Bless.


NeenahPete said...

Hi Dave! Haven't checked in for quite awhile but thought I'd wander over and see what you've been up to. Hope you had a great Thanksgiving. Your last paragraph says it all. Take care! Pete

Dave Anderson said...

Good to hear from you. Just got done fishing at Red Lake for the weekend then watched Aaron take care of Brady.
What a way to end the week.

Thanks for keeping in touch.