Ice fishing yesterday comprised of 11 hours of time, 3 different locations, and a crappy photographer. True to his word my kid drove right up to the first spot of fishing. In the first spot we fished at we were sitting on top of 22 feet of water with the fish finder showing a ton of fish under us. Unfortunately none of them were hungry as we sat there for two hours with nothing to show but a few weak bites.
Naturally this wouldn't do and my son the fishing fanatic decided we needed to move to another location. He was in a fishing tournament the previous weekend and decided that that's where the fish were. He also assured me it was a spot we could drive right up to like this first spot we tried. So we packed up and headed out to that spot. Again the second spot showed a ton of fish under us and we were sitting on top of 11 feet of water. We caught a ton of fish in second spot. Not one keeper in the bunch though. I don't think I've ever caught so many fish at one time as we did there. Every "Bambi" in this lake was biting, but not one fish worth keeping. (Or taking a picture of.)
The crappy photographer (me) failed to take any pictures of our second stop of the day, which was a shame. This spot was like a small city with hundreds of vehicles and ice shanties set up.
My son decided after a few hours in the second spot another relocation was called for. He was genuinely flummoxed by the lack of sizable fish being caught. The first spot we went to was his favorite spot and had never let him down before. The second spot he had done well in the weekend before.
As he was mulling different spots to move to he recalled me telling him where I used to catch a lot of fish when I was a kid and he'd never been there before. I reluctantly agreed to try this spot as he'd been bugging me in the past to go there. My reluctance was related to a couple of factors. One being we were talking about a spot that I hadn't ice fished in forty years. Two being there was no easy access to this spot and no way possible to drive right up to this spot. In other words we were going to be hauling 250 pounds of equipment on a hefty hike to get there. Welcome to my nightmare folks.
We arrive there and he's in love with the spot. There's about a dozen people set up in this area. It's a big area and a lot of deep water ranging from 40 to 60 feet deep in places. He decided to drill several test holes to set up the fish finder for the best spot. I swear I drug that ice shanty for over a mile as he went from spot to spot looking for fish. He wasn't pleased with the test results and I finally had to put my foot down, before collapsing with exhaustion, to tell him we weren't going to catch any fish by simply drilling holes in the ice.
We were seeing fish, just not the appropriate number to please him. He took pity on me and we finally set up in what he deemed was an acceptable location. And yeah, we didn't catch a thing worth keeping once again. We finally packed up and got off the ice before dark. I was beat. Him, not so much. He decided he wasn't done fishing for the day and decided he was heading to the "dam" to catch fish. When he asked me if I wanted to go I
politely declined stated he was nuts. He got out his cell phone and called a friend and they made plans to hook up for a night of fishing.
A phone call from him later last night found him to be pretty happy. He was finally catching fish and wished I was there. I told him it wasn't the end of the world that we didn't do that well earlier in the day and maybe I was bad karma and all he really needed to do was to get rid of me to catch some fish worth keeping. He didn't quite buy into that so I imagine he's going to want to drag me out again in the future. Below are a few pictures, all from the first location we started out at.
Time to drill a hole
Truck sitting on top of 28 inches of ice.
Setting up the ice shanty.
Just about fully set up.
The kid in the shanty.
Fish (depth) finder to the left, heater in the center, my knee on the right.