This cold weather we are in the midst of right now is just the ticket to safer ice. You can hear the ice pounding on the lakes as it thickens and settles into place. Most areas are pretty safe now and more and more 4 wheelers and snowmobiles are being used to pull the stuff around. My guess is it won't be long before the lakes are marked with barrels for the snowmobile trails. We might even see a few trucks out on the ice soon although you won't see mine!
Good reports are coming into the shop now about almost all the species, but not from everyone. This tells me that some lakes, and fishermen, are more productive than others right now, which is normal. The window of the bite is still small and varies throughout the day. Which means you need to put your time in on the ice or get lucky enough to be there at the right time.
As opposed to what I read from other reports there is no one or two baits that are working better than others. We have over 50,000 jigs in stock at the shop because all of them at one time or another will work best. Live minnows, bugs, plastics and other lures all have there place at the table of fishing success right now. The only difference is presentation. And that presentation can change from day to day or hour to hour. For example, when jigging for gills sometimes a steady back and forth is what turns them on while at other times if you are not jigging that bait constantly you won't pull anything thru the hole. One day red spikes will work while another day white spikes will be king and then the next day a pink and white plastic will be the ticket. Stay flexible. It's the HEE HAW conundrum. If it ain't working then don't do that!
Looks like the weekend is setting up well for weather. Save for Sunday which is suppose to have a high below 0 the rest of the days before and after should be quite comfortable out there. So what are you waiting for?!?
Jeff Bolander, also known as 'How' of Dewey, Catchem and How at www.DeweyCatchemAndHow.com