New member here. Hope to get down to Texas after this COVID [censored] is over and catch fish and shoot some hogs. Did a trip like that about 7 or 8 years ago and loved it. Not from around your parts but i enjoy seeing how things are done in other places and know that some people enjoy reports from other locales as well. On to my inaugural post.
This recounts a few days my son and i spent on the ice right at the end of the hard water season in early spring this year.
Day one we got on the ice about noon. It was windy as %^&# with gusts to 40 miles/hour. My son and I managed to get the pop up set with 6 ice anchors and tied down to the snowmobile:
First hour was totally dead and than the action started. Over a dozen like this:
And at about 4:00 pm a few like this:
Those came came home with us and measured 18 to 20 inches.
Around 5 pm the wind died down some and the ice started making creepy cracking, grinding and moaning sounds. We fished until about 645 pm and than headed out for the 5 mile ride back to the truck.
Headed out on Day 2 (the closer) at noon and had lines in the water about 1 pm. It was a beautiful sunny day with no wind. We went to a different spot about 8 miles from the truck this time. Ice was really loud with lots of noise and the odd small movement. Creepy but we were not concerned as we were on 14 inches with 11 of those being clear and solid.
Action started right away with 20+ like this in 5 hours:
Also picked up a few Jumbos:
The real magic happened at 245 pm. This is the biggest Walleye I have ever caught in either hard or soft water:
Just over 28 inches and a personal best for me. He came off part way up the hole and i threw my rod away and stuck my arm down the hole and grabbed him by the gills - close call. At about 3 pm just when my heart rate was returning to normal we got hit by the craziest ice quake i have ever experienced. Sounded like multiple close gun shots. Water shot out of the holes. Hut was shaking and ice was going back and forth and up and down. Was so violent it knocked over the Buddy Heater.
My son and I were unable to discern any change in the ice in our immediate area and agreed that whatever damage may have occurred was now done and we might as well carry on fishing but agreed we should leave an hour early to ensure good light for the 8 mile trip out.
On the ride out 2 miles from the truck we came up on a hard to see open water pressure crack. I was doing about 25 miles/hour and did not have enough time to stop so i pinned it and thanked God that i studded the track this fall. We were doing about 55 miles/hour when we hit the water. My sled weighs just over 800 lbs with the amount of fuel i had. Add 2x 200 lb riders. Add 7 foot by 3 foot toboggan loaded with 250 ish pounds of gear in tow. Crack was somewhere between 25 to 30 feet wide and we skipped across - not recommended. Everything in the the toboggan was soaked. Should have taken a picture of the crack but i was so wigged out i just kept going until i was on land.
Also just got that walleye back from the taxi:
28.5 inchess, 17 inch girth, 10.3 lbs.
Stripes didn't really show in the picture taken in the ice hut - not sure if it was the weird lighting. They were definitely there in one of the other pics but perhaps not as dark as the taxi made them. Photo bombing credits to my granddaughter.