January 16, 2012

Occupy Lake Winnebago

Today was beautiful, and though the warm weather made for comfortable fishing, it wasn't helping the ice.

Winnebago System_ Fahrney PointI hooked up with "The Prison Guard" and one of his buddies early this morning to fish off Fahrney Point (locally known as the "Jesuit Retreat").  It's a bit south of where I typically fish, but we had heard the perch were hitting out there, so we decided to take a shot.

The arrow points to the Jesuit Retreat, and feel free to embiggenify by clicking the image.

I drank almost all of the beer in my fridge during (and mostly after) the season-ending Packer loss to the Giants yesterday evening, and slept a bit later than intended.  I made it to the ice at about 7:15 with the sun just breaking the Eastern horizon.  Fahrney Point OverviewIt's a bit of a walk to reach the opening of the bay, and I was happy for it because breaking a sweat (dragging about 150 lbs of gear) cleared some of the cobwebs.  (Click the image to do something, or something.)  As you can see, there is a long channel to traverse before reaching the fishing spots (labeled "first" and "second" in the order we fished them).  Snow on the ice makes it much more difficult to haul gear than glare.

Contour MapOur first set of the day was in about 8 feet of water on 4 inch ice.  There was plenty of perch action, but most were too small.  It is kind of a pain in the ass to continually re-bait your jig after some runt stole your grub.  We sat for a while jigging (while our tip-ups saw no real action), then decided to move. 

The second set was in about 10 feet of water on about 2 to 3 inch ice.  A bit thin for my taste, but what the hell.  To reach the second spot, we had to traverse a pressure crack... not usually a big deal, but our ice has been poor all year, and going past the point the ice is even worse than the bays. 

Falling ThroughI was in the lead as my buddies were wrapping up their gear when I set off.  We cross pressure cracks all the time, and you're always watching for crap ice.  In this case, there was open water hidden under a veneer created by blowing snow collecting on an open crack.  The snow sucked up water from below which froze in a thin shell across the top.  It looked fine until you walked it.  The point marked "A" is where I stepped through the hidden crack, and point "B" is where "The Prison Guard" stepped through damn near to his balls, soaking his boot and spilling his gear everywhere. 

I used the fishcam all day, and we hit plenty of perch, along with a few white bass.  I saw a sturgeon on the cam for my first time, which was pretty cool.

I did not catch the first fish, nor did I catch the biggest or most.  There's always next time.

And lest I forget to mention, Barack Hussein Obama is an affirmative-action communist limp-wristed femme.

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Posted by: denas at December 18, 2012 03:50 AM (jL1yY)

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