OT Ice fishing questions

I am in Northern Illinois. We have a small lake nearby.
I would estimate that, after extended cold weather, the ice is at
least 15 inches thick.
I have never done ice fishing and I have questions that are pretty
basic.
1) I assume that with a snow shovel and a 6 foot long straight steel
prybar, it should not be a problem to clear a foot of snow and to
break through that ice.
2) When I was a kid, I walked past a recently abandoned ice fishing
hole in Russia. I was shocked to see a giant quantity of fish crowding
the hole, as if they were starved of air and needed desperately to get
a fresh breath of air. Is that due to oxygen deprivation on an ice
covered lake, or was the hole chummed?
Is there some way to get the same effect? The lake was frozen at least
for 5-6 weeks, IIRC.
i
Reply to
Ignoramus32184
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Western Lake Erie is the Walleye capital of the world. I've been ice fishing there since I was a kid. We always had a collapsible canvas shack built on a pallet-like platform and use an ice auger that drills a 8" hole. I have dropped onion bags filled with dog food and rocks in the holes to attract baitfish that attract Yellow Perch, Walleye and Sheepsheads. I don't know it that actually works. I too have seen fish congregate at a hole. I think they are curious. When diving, fish come up and bump my mask all the time; it's like they are saying "Whatcha doin' in there? Got something to eat?" and I would often hand feed them nightcrawlers. You would think they would be skittish but they're not and Smallies are the most curious.
Reply to
Tom Gardner
I've only been ice fishing twice and you want to use auger. You'll be there all day and down right pooped with a pry bar, plus probably loose the bar. I'm not sure, but for a 12 pack I bet there will be someone there that has an auger. As for fish, well I've never seen people catching fish. Always thought it was about getting away from the wife.
I've got a question for you. I was crusing around that big deep lake in russia with google earth and was really surprised at the bright blue ice, happen to know why it is blue? It's real easy to find, just click on five pictures at the lake and one will show the ice.
I don't mean to pry, but what is your story? I would think someone from there would be an expert at snow and ice. Kind of like the people I have talked to in scandinavia that say they plow the roads with tanks.
SW
Reply to
Sunworshipper
al, unfortunately not available on line. In the photos the ice is as smooth= and clear as glass, over black water. Perhaps Google caught a reflection o= f the sky.
jsw
Reply to
Jim Wilkins
My own thinking is that the ice reflects the sky. For some reason the sky is bluer in Russia, or maybe I was younger.
i
Reply to
Ignoramus32184
It seems a deeper blue here in NH when we get a cold blast from Canada, like this morning. Less dust in winter?
jsw
Reply to
Jim Wilkins
I grew up in northern New England and ice fishing was a good way to spend weekends when everything was snowed in.
We carried a snow shovel and an ice auger ( you can make one ) and just shoveled/scrapped off enough snow to get to something fairly solid. Auger the hole and set your trap. As I remember we used live minnows for bait.
The "traps" were a folding wood cross with a small reel, to hold the fish line, on the bottom arm and a flag on the upper. The cross arm kept it from falling down the hole :-) The flag was on a spring and bent over and caught on the reel. If the reel turned it released the spring. You built a fire and sat around the fire ( with the elders frequently drank from some brown bottles that they kept in a hip pocket ) and us kids ran around on the ice and when a flag popped up raced to the hole to get the fish - just haul them in and throw them out on the ice.
You can build everything you need so, other then the minnows, it is a pretty cheap sport.
Reply to
john B.
There are many like this, it must look like this in person. Unless some innovative russian is selling filters that fit all cameras for a quarter.
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SW
Reply to
Sunworshipper
Did you look at the photo? I don't see a correlation between satellite images and a number of photos from different people on the same lake.
SW
Reply to
Sunworshipper
If it is a popular fishing lake, there will be holes from other fishermen covered by thin layers of ice, much easier to get through than a whole sheet of ice. PLUS, these holes are usually drilled by persons who know the lake, have the equipment, and know where the fish are. All they need is a "FISH HERE ------>" SIGN
Steve
Heart surgery pending? Read up and prepare. Learn how to care for a friend. Download the book.
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Reply to
Steve B
Ignoramus;
A pry bar is not a good way to cut through ice for a few reasons. First, it's heavy and awkward to use. Secondly, you normally have to make a much 'larger hole' in order at the onset in order to get you 8" hole at the bottom. The ice hole that is created with such a tool also creates HUGE chunks of sharp ice edges and you WILL easily cut your line on those edges.
Ice augers can be found at places like BASS PRO or Wal-Mart for as little as $30 or $40 bucks. The Normark augers have nice sharp blades and I can get through 22" of ice in less than a minute or two. Also, if you have a decent drill (250+ foot pounds) you can buy a simple attachment that connects to the auger and you can drill quite a few holes that only take about 8 to 10 seconds to get through the ice. So all in all, it's not expensive to get through just about 'any' thickness of ice
Fish in Many 'Heavily Iced' areas are easily attracted to sunlight that appears when a hole is cut completely through the ice.. Compound this with a body of water that has 'Very Little' fishing pressure and you'll have some very eager and inquisitive fish. This phenomena 'rarely' occurs on a lake or body of water that is 'Heavily Fished'. Also, the probability of fish at the 'Top' of the hole (surface of the water) is EXTREMELY rare and is likely a result of a 'Larger' predatory fish that has pushed a 'School of Fish' to the surface, thus trapping some of them into the hole. Once inside the hole and depending on the size of the fish, they will very quickly lose their 'bearings' and remain in the hole until they can escape.
Check with your 'Fishing Regulations' for your area before using Bait, or Chumming the water! Use of any one of these methods can ABSOLUTELY ruin your day, week or Month depending on the 'FINE' that you might receive for doing using the former when it is 'not allowed'. Where I live, the fines can be quite severe and as such, they are NOT limited to the confiscation of ALL your Fishing Equipment, you CAR/TRUCK and even your BOAT! So indeed, be aware...
Lake Baikal can will sometimes not freeze completely until February... It depends on 'how cold' the Winters are and how quickly them come. Having said that, sometimes the lake is frozen before the middle of December! Ice thickness' vary, but it's not uncommon to find 5' of black ice (very strong ice) so bring a 'decent auger'.
Oh Yeah,... The Sky is MUCH BLUER in places like this due to FAR, FAR less pollution. From what I know, Dust isn't much of an obstruction unless you live in or near a desert or 'desert-like' environment....
Cheers,
Reply to
Jman

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