I thought I would drive down to Hamlin Lake, which is just north of Ludington. I didn't know where to go so I headed for the first launch site. Two cars and someone on the ice, so I thought "This must be the place".
I headed out and walked half way out and drilled a hole. I used my fishfinder to check the depth. Two feet!
Out a ways more, two feet! After getting almost across the lake and still finding two feet of water I decided to head towards Bugg Point. The parking lot was full of cars and there was a village out on the ice. I found a spot and found 14 feet of water so I fished.
I drilled three holes with my ice auger. The red strainer is to remove the slush ice from the hole. I will put my Vexilar fishfinder in the top hole and my two fishing poles in the bottom holes.
I have the top of my portable ice shanty pulled over and it really cuts the wind. I can even take my gloves off. I guess I forgot to mention clothes for ice fishing. Well, you can layer and wear insulated pants and jacket. Then you want a good warm hat and mittens. My boots are Sorel ice pacs and they really do a great job of keeping my toes warm.
You can click on any picture to enlarge it. I am trying to show my jig and hook setup. I have a wax worm on the hook above the jig and a wax worm on the small hook below the jig. The picture isn't the greatest.
On the end on my fishing pole is a spring bobber that is very sensitive to fish bites. The pole is only about 30" long so it fits inside the shanty.
The bobber jiggles and I set the hook. Out comes a 4" perch that could hardly get the hook in his mouth.
A couple more small perch and I am ready to leave. This was just an exploring trip. I found the area but want to fish in deeper water next time.
Another day, I decide to try some new lakes that I haven't fished before. I see that it will be a little tricky getting into this fishing spot. I am going to try a new place. Blacksmith Bayou! It is not plowed but has a two track headed in and down to the fishing area. I hope I don't meet a car coming out. There is only one car here and I head out on the ice. I will have to use 4 wheel drive to get out of here.
The ice is about 4" thick but the depth is only 3 feet. The other guy out is down in the back bay. It is probably deeper there but I don't want to crowd him. I only take the yellow pail and carry my gear as the portable shanty is too big to take down the stairs to the Bayou. I get a bite. Now that feels like a better fish. I haul in a large rock bass. I let him go and fish for another 45 minutes without a bite. Time to move on.
Next I try a small lake near my home. The ice wasn't good three days ago but I see two guys out on the ice so I stop.
Ia m back in the water. You can see the spring bobbers if you click on this picture.
I finally start getting some bites in 24 feet of water.
Now that is more like it. A couple of bluegills. I hope I can find some more.
I forgot a couple pieces of gear. I always carry a hemostat, a whistle, and nail clippers.
The last piece of safety gear are the ice picks I wear around my neck. They are used to pull yourself up on the ice if you fall through. I also have a long rope to be used to help in case of an emergency.
Well, back to fishing. i kept the baits right next to bottom. I can see my bait on the Vexilar screen as I lower it down to wards the bottom.. Fish show up on the screen and i just try to present my bait just above the fish. If I am lucky, I can see the fish rise up towards the bait.
It looks like snow clouds are coming in so I better pack it up for today. How did I do? Just take a peak on the cleaning board.
I brought home six medium bluegills. It is just enough for a meal for me! Are they tasty? You bet! I hope to be fishing more each day after Christmas. Any questions? Want to go out ice fishing, leave me a message, I might not be home and I might be out...............fishing.