Take this time to get ready for ice fishing
I will be a little short on the report side of this week "fishing lines" as other commitments kept me off the water for a stretch of days. I just went a full week without being on the water and that is the longest stretch for me since May. It is amazing how life interferes with life at times.
The good news is that the patterns are holding, so if you find yourself in the same situation, you will be able to get back on your bite when you finally can get back on the water. With deer hunting and the time change, I always notice a slow down on the number of people out fishing. Those that do still get out are still catching fish. I figure we have about two more weeks of open water here. Depending on the freeze, we always end up with a lag time before the ice is safe. This lag time is a good time for the open water enthusiasts to consider a travel trip to a river system. A 3-4 hour drive can put you on active open water walleyes. The Rainy, Missouri, and the Mississippi are all very good, productive fisheries at this time of year.
As we get closer to this transition to our ice period, it is a good time to start dedicating a little time to getting your ice fishing gear organized and replenished. It is always a bit easier than trying to scramble around and getting frustrated because you can't find everything and discovering your locator battery is dead. It is always more pleasant getting things organized at 40 degrees than looking around the garage in 5 degree weather. I don't hunt, and I have a hard time staying on top of organization of my outdoor gear. I am impressed with the outdoorsman that hunts everything all seasons, fish all species, make trips for big game, stay organized with all their gear and stay caught up with all the projects that need to be done this time of year. Wow! How do you do that and watch football and the baseball playoffs? See you on the water.
(Laabs runs Brad Laabs' Fishing Guide Service in Detroit Lakes.)