Ice thickness, safety and mobility are the biggest concerns to anglers as of this time (12/16). Thickness varies greatly from lake to lake and even on different parts of each lake.
We have reports of as little as two inches coming in this morning, as well as 10 inches on others. Small lakes that froze early have it the worse. Not enough ice (6” avg) to support the weight of that first heavy snow. Larger lakes and off shore basins that remained open during first two snowfalls before locking up have stronger (yet not always thicker) ice. Areas of higher traffic are mixed with some areas of more slush, yet also areas of less slush due to snow being trampled and freezing up.
Crappies: Good - Most focus on this species, though action up and down. Slow dropping plastics best on areas that aren’t too hard to move around. Some tip-down bites on small minnows.
Northern Pike: Good-Fair – Action a bit slower than previous week. Large shiners best.
Bluegills: Good-Fair – Again, not up to par with previous weeks fishing. Most anglers reporting “action” fish with fewer keepers. Live bait doing best with waxies, mousees over plastics and a very inactive jigging sequence.
Walleye: Good-Fair – Just prior to dark on 3-4” sucker minnows best. Mostly tip-up bite, Eyes somewhat inactive, could be moon (full) period.
Perch: Fair – Still a shallow water bite. Small Bluegill shaped jigs tipped with waxies or crappie minnows best.
Largemouth Bass: Fair – Some Bass on jig poles set-up for Gills, some on medium shiners on tip-ups.
The forecast of a couple more nights of below zero combined with no more snow for the next 10 days bodes well for making ice safer and less troublesome for traffic
Keep eye on our FaceBook page for ice updates!