Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Ice is Getting There

So today I went to check out the ice conditions on my favorite lake. I didn't have high hopes as we had warmer weather this past week as well as some rain. Nothing kills the ice like rain. I was pleasantly surprised to find 3 inches of ice on the lake. There is a thin sheet of ice over the initial sheet of ice and it gives when you walk on it so it doesn't feel to safe yet. Another good inch of ice will make me feel better. It's not a good feeling when you walk on the ice and it gives a bit. Kinda scares you. Anyway it supposed to be a tiny bit colder here during the Christmas week, so I am hoping against hope to be able to go ice fishing before the kids go back to school after New Years. My husband got the ice auger out today and the blades need shimming and sharpening. We took the auger with us to check the ice and I'm glad we did. Now we know what needs fixing. Better to know before the actual ice fishing trip because he can really work up a sweat when the auger is not sharp enough. So it was a trip well worth it. I am hoping the next time I post I can brag about all the fish I caught through the ice. Until next time, tata.

Friday, December 11, 2009

I went to one of the little spots that I like to fish yesterday. I wanted to check the ice situation. Much to my surprise I found the entire area ice over. The ice is about 2 inches thick and is almost walkable but not quite fishable yet. We need another 2 inches of ice to safely fish it. It hasn't been above freezing in a couple of days now and won't be for a couple of more. So looks like I will be ice fishing in a week or so. It's great news as I need to get some fresh fish into my diet. I hate to buy fish from the store because you just never know how fresh it really is. I rather be absolutely sure as to how fresh the fish I am eating is. Fish out of the ice is very very good. The meat is much firmer than when you get fish from warmer waters. I really enjoy ice fishing and one of the reasons is the firm fresh fish I get to eat. Just throw your catch onto the ice and you are good to go. No bringing an extra cooler full of ice to keep your catch fresh. Happy fishing all.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

It's Good and Cold

I woke up this morning and the temperature was 3 degrees. It's only supposed to get to 16 today and that is good news for ice fishermen. I can't wait to get on the ice, and it's the only time I like the cold weather. Hate having to start a car in the cold but I jump at every chance I can to hit the ice. This year I will be introducing the sport of Ice Fishing to 3 teenage boys who have never gone. They are all warm weather fishermen but have never ventured onto the ice. These 3 young men are friends of my family and have been at me for a couple of years to take them. Now is the time. The weather in the Chicago area is supposed to be frigid for a least a week, so I am hoping that by the time the kids are on their Christmas vacation the ice will be safe for ice fishing. I think today I will take a ride to my favorite lake and see how the ice is forming so far. I think a good week of really really cold weather like what we are supposed to be getting will go a long ways towards getting the ice formed and thick enough for ice fishing soon. Time to check the lines on my ice fishing rods and break out the thermos and heater for the shelter. I recently bought a pair of jeans with a flannel lining which I can't wait to try and see if they keep my legs a bit warmer. Hope so.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Ice Fishing Shelters

An Ice Fishing Shelter is a wonderful addition to your ice fishing trip. When the winds are blowing and it's below freezing it's great to be able to go inside your shelter and get out of the weather. There are many kinds of shelters, I have one that fits inside a pack for easy storage and carrying. It sets up in minutes and comes with four spikes to drive into the ice at all four corners. When the wind is blowing hard these are invaluable to keep the shelter where you want it. Some shelters come already attached to a sled for easy transport and set up. There are also some shelters that have built in seats and floors with holes in the floor so you can position the shelter over the holes you have cut into the ice. There are one man shelters and 2 or more man shelters. There are shelters to meet almost any need. In the northern states they even have wooden shelters that remain on the ice the entire ice fishing season. Add a heater to the mix along with a thermos of coffee or your favorite hot chocolate and you can have a wonderful and warm trip onto the ice. Happy fishing.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Here Comes The Ice

I do believe the winter has finally come in my area. And it's about time. 2 days ago I drove past a lake in Indiana and it was open water. The very next day I drove past it again, the road I was on goes right through the middle of the lake, and the shallow end was iced over. The deeper end had some ice over along the edges. The temperature around here for the past week has been in the very low 20's overnight and a few of the days it didn't get over freezing. This is great, because I have promised a few kids I know that I would take them ice fishing and to do this over their Christmas vacation would be perfect. I used to coach and run a kids bowling league and some of the kids are fishermen as I am and I have promised to take them fishing. Not all of them are interested in ice fishing but 3 of them in particular are very interested and have never been ice fishing. I would love to give them the experience. Nothing better than to see a smile on a kids face. Oddly enough I have 2 sons who are in their late teens and basically they want nothing to do with fishing of any kind. I thought having sons would improve my chances of my kids liking the fishing, camping and hiking that myself and husband love to do. They like the hiking thing but I think we shoved fishing down their throats to much resulting in a huge dislike for the sport. Oh well what are you going to do. So needless to say I am watching the weather and ice conditions with bated breath hoping for solid ice by Christmas vacation time.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Snow on Wednesday

We are supposed to be getting some snow tomorrow, Wednesday December 2 and I can't wait. I have been waiting for the cold weather for over a month now. A lot of lakes that I like to fish have been closed due to hunting. Most of them are now done with the hunting season but don't open to fishing until the ice comes in. This is an unbearable situation for those of us who could fish every chance we get. We had a very mild summer in my part of the country, I don't believe I ran the air conditioner in the month of August at all. Very very unusual. So I was thinking that because of the mild summer we were in for a very brutal winter. I also thought winter might come early. Shows you what I know. Next to nothing when it comes to weather. But I am still hoping for a very cold winter as I can't wait to go ice fishing. We have been having below freezing temperatures overnight for the past couple of weeks, and the other morning I had a thin sheet of ice in my minnow bucket. So here's hoping for a prolonged cold snap and soon, I am getting anxious to get on the ice.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Waiting for the Ice

So about a week ago my husband and I went fishing at the river near our house. It was a beautiful day but we didn't catch a thing. The weather had been cold then warm and that turns off the fish. Most of our favorite lakes close for hunting and then don't reopen until the ice comes in. And I can't wait. I love to ice fish and even more than that I love to eat the fish that comes out of the cold water. The meat is firmer than the fish that come out of warmer waters. So in the meantime I will get out all my ice fishing stuff and check it all over to make sure the lines are good and such. Fill up my heater for the ice shelter and make sure my boots are good. I just bought some really good warm socks and for me that's real important cos my feet get so darn cold. They are wool socks so I'm hoping that they work. I have to try new socks every winter because of my feet. The heater helps though I can take off my boots and lay my ice cold feet on the heater and it's like heaven.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Raining Again

The rain has been coming down for 3 days now, makes it hard for me to get out fishing. I hate standing or sitting if I'm in the boat in the rain, especially if its cold. We had 3 beautiful days last week and I did manage to get out fishing. Now its 39 degrees and raining. I can only hope for continued cold so the ice fishing season will open earlier than usual in my part of the country. So I guess I will check the line on my ice fishing rods and make sure everything is ready for the ice. I can't wait. The water in the river by my house is very very cold, I'm sure its a bit colder than usual for this time of the year, and we did have an unseasonably mild summer. I also really need to go buy new rain gear as mine is leaking in the shoulder area so its quite ineffective. I also like to use my rain gear for ice fishing because it really blocks the wind. So I will have to do that soon, see if I can get a good deal on a nice jacket and pants combo. I did get a really nice pair of mittens for ice fishing last year where you can unsnap the bottom part of the mitten to expose your fingers when you need to. They are really nice and warm. My feet are what gives me problems when I am out on the ice. I have a thick pair of boots that I have had for over 20 years and they are still in good shape with a wool insert. My feet still get cold very easily. I usually wear 2 pair of socks inside the boot and still I have cold feet. So this summer I asked my 2 sisters to knit me some thick long socks. Maybe this will do the trick for my cold feet. We shall see.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

WooHoo I went fishing today!!!

The last 2 days it has gotten into the 60's. Very very nice. I just had to get out and wet a line. And what a good time my husband and I had. I caught 6 crappie. The 2 largest were 10 and a half and 10 inches. Chunky little fellas. I also caught a small largemouth bass about 13 inches and also very chunky for a bass that small. My hubby caught 4 crappie, his largest was 10 inches and 2 bass, 14 inches and chunky. We went into Indiana which is only about 10 miles from home and fished the back waters of the Kankakee River. The leaves on the trees are changing and it was a beautiful day to be outdoors, especially because I was fishing. At home the ladybugs were everywhere. Those Japanese ones that bite. Makes being outside miserable. At the river there didn't seem to be any ladybugs ( for which I was eternally grateful ), but I did get one mosquito bite. Its supposed to be even nicer tomorrow and hubby wants to go fishing again, but i won't be joining him as its my bowling night and I can't miss that. After tomorrow its going to get cold again. But then again the sooner it gets good and cold the sooner I get to go ice fishing. WooHoo !!!!!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Woke up this morning at 8:00 to frost. This is a good sign for us ice fisherman. I said in an earlier post that i thought we would be ice fishing sooner rather than later and this sure helps get us on our way. The sun is shinning brightly and it looks beautiful out but looks can be deceiving. Its 35 degrees out and there is a heavy frost still on all the car windows. Think maybe I will wait just a bit to take my walk. So maybe I will go browse around Ebay and see what goodies they have for sale today. I will also be waiting impatiently for my beloved Bears to play. They have the Sunday night game this week and had a bye last week, long time in between games. Little tough for the die hard Bears fan.

Friday, October 16, 2009

It's too cold to fish !!

Wow, I can't believe how cold it's been this October already. Not only did we have a really mild summer, ( I don't think I ran the air conditioner in August), it's unseasonably cold right now. Makes going fishing a bit of a drag, I really don't like to be cold when I'm fishing unless of course I'm standing on the ice. Not that I like being cold when I'm ice fishing, I don't, but then I would have my ice shelter and a heater. And don't forget the big thermos of hot coffee. My husband and I like to fish some really nice areas in Indiana as we only live 10 miles from the Indiana border. In Indiana however they close our favorite lake to hunting right around this time of the year, and even though hunting doesn't go until the lake freezes, there will be no more fishing until the ice comes in. Makes my hubby crazy. We can still fish in Illinois, we live on a river, but someone stole our outboard motor a few weeks ago. Unbelievable!! That motor has been on our boat in the driveway, ( we put the boat in the garage in the winter), for 7 years and never had a problem. We went out a couple of weeks ago to go fishing and the motor was gone. So no motor, no river fishing for us. Going to have to get a new motor this spring when we get our income tax check. So now I sit and wait for the lakes to freeze. I'm thinking it will be sooner than later because of the weather we have been having the past month. Usually in Illinois we don't get to ice fish till well into the winter months, usually January. This year I think will be earlier. Hope so, its unbearable when you can't fish when you really want to. Good things come to those who wait, or so they say.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Columbus Day Stuff

Today is Columbus Day and most kids have the day off. My son who is in the high school band had to march in the Columbus Day Parade in Chicago. He had to be at the school by 9:30 am this morning to ride the bus into Chicago. We live in a very small town about 50 miles south of Chicago. It was a very cold day and the kids in the band had on their band uniforms consisting of a tux shirt,red cummerbund, red bow tie and black tux slacks and black shoes. They all look so nice when dressed up. My son knew it was going to be cold, it was only in the 40's today, so he put a Under Armor shirt under his uniform to help ward off some of the cold. The parade started at 12:30 in the afternoon and Danny (my son) called to let me know what number had been assigned to his band so I would be sure to not miss them on TV. He later told me that they had waited in the cold for 2 hours before it was their turn to march. Needless to say I was anxious to see the band. I sat looking at the parade for an hour and a half to see the band. I taped the parade so I could show him when he got home. It was exciting to see him and the band and this is like the 5th or 6th time his band has marched in the parade. Was glad to get him home and warm, he wasn't happy about getting up on his day off for the parade but when he got home he told me it was kinda sad as this would be the last time he would be marching in that parade. The Momence Marching Band, which consists of 6th thru 12th grades, combine for marching in parades only. I am a proud mom.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Hi everyone, so glad you joined me. As most of you can probably tell I am very very new to blogging but am excited to be here. Today my husband was off work so we were going to go fishing, and of course it started to rain as we were getting ready to go. Now I love to fish but when its 50 degrees out and raining I am not nearly as excited as usual to go. So instead of going fishing I made a wonderful diner of fish he caught 2 days ago. Yummy bluegill, probably the best tasting fish ever. The days are getting longer and colder so that will lessen our fishing outings until the lakes freeze. Then watch out. Get out the long johns and the ice shelter cause I'm going to hit the ice. I am usually the only female on the ice, and that's not so bad, cause when I out-fish the menfolk its the biggest rush ever. I actually started to fish when I was dating my future hubby and only went because I wanted to be with him and he loves to fish. Well it turns out so do I. But I certainly didn't know that at the time. Get in a boat and throw out a line, and truly its such quality time to spend with someone you love. Now its been 26 years of dating and marriage and we still spend tons of time out on the water. So once we got married we decided to have kids. I wanted sons because I figured they would love fishing as much as my husband and I do, and we were blessed with 2 wonderful sons. Guess what, they both hate to fish go figure. Thankfully they are both almost grown so we can still go fishing without them, as they are old enough to be left home. I do believe I am rambling so I will stop for now. Hope you all enjoyed my post and please feel free to add anything you wish.