Well, what can I say? We started out with our approach to the Thanksgiving holiday like it was going to be a regular/typical start to the ice season. Just when some anglers were getting in on some good early ice panfish and an okay early ice walleye bite, Mother Nature threw us another curve
We had several of the shallow basin lakes in the area get up to 8 inches of good clear ice, and walk out ice on many of the other area lakes. With the warm stretch of weather that looks like will continue until Tuesday Dec. 5, some days of sunshine, a few days of wild wind, the ice has been compromised.
Lake Sallie opened up in the middle as did several other area lakes. The smart move now is—STAY OFF THE ICE. We will get cold again and make ice. I would think we will have some walkable ice again by the weekend of Dec. 9.
The one positive note on this situation is that we have not had any snow. The ice that did develop is clear and will stay that way as long as we get cold and build the ice back up again. We need the cold to come and the snow to stay away to build good ice. If we get snow to early on thinner ice, we may struggle for good ice for a significant part of the ice fishing season.
It is even hard to travel now to good ice conditions as the inconsistent weather has changed conditions from here to the border as well as west and east of us. You can use the time now to shop for all the latest ice gear for family and friends, and put together the wish list for Christmas (or treat yourself!) Get projects done that you procrastinated or if you don’t get done now will interfere with getting on the ice when the time comes. You can satisfy your fishing itch by reading articles, books, magazines to improve knowledge, watch videos, or attend seminars, presentations or events.
I blew it last week by forgetting to mention that FM Walleyes was having Chip Leer present on Nov. 30 for their “Ice fishing night”. Even though you probably missed that, you can go to their web page at www.fmwalleyes.com or visit them on Facebook to check out upcoming events and presentations.
I am not too late to mention that Twin Cities Walleye Unlimited will be having Keith Kavajecz present on Thursday Dec. 7 at 7 p.m. at the Bloomington Event Center, 1114 American Blvd W. in Bloomington.
You can also check out the lineup of presenters at their website www.tcwalleyes .com or visit them on Facebook as well. Both these clubs network and are linked so you can visit one from the other. These clubs have had the best the industry has to offer present to members, and the public is always welcome.