We lucked out in our area when it came to the traditional pre-Thanksgiving snow storm this year.

The state from Little Falls and south to the border of Iowa got blasted with 6-10 inches of wet and heavy snow. Ice conditions in this part of the state could suffer the rest of the ice season due to this early snowstorm. That area of the state did not have as good of an ice base as we have going in our 412 lakes region.

The small amount we received in our area should not impair our continued ice development or ruin what we already have.

We are sitting with some of the best ice conditions in the state right now. We may experience a little more pressure on the lakes in our area this ice season as ice anglers will seek good conditions to pursue this growing winter activity.

Snow covering ice slows ice development due to the insulating properties of the snow. Snow, especially high moisture snow adds significant weight to the ice and sags the ice sheet. Water will come up through holes and cracks and flood the surface. Conditions like this make for a mess on the lake and poor conditions to set up in for fishing.

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We have had these conditions before in our area. When it has happened here, many ice anglers travel to other areas of the state that have better conditions. We will be that area others will look to from the looks of things this early ice season.

The word is also out about the good pan fishing available to ice anglers in our area. Several ice fishing shows have filmed in our area already this ice season featuring fishing for crappie and gills. Part of the draw for these fishing shows was the early ice we have, as well as the quality of ice compared to the rest of the ice belt.

The word is getting out about what all of us locals have known. We not only have great open water fishing, but we great ice fishing opportunities here.