December 26, 2011

First Time On Frozen Strawberry

So I finally made it to Strawberry this year! We had a group of five venture out in the wee hours of the morning to see how the bite was through the ice. There's a good 8 inches of ice but when it's see through like it was today, it always gets me to walk differently. You could see through the ice about 10 feet which made for a good show as you reeled up fish. The ice was really making noise today and it shifted and expanded. One such time started with a loud boom and all of us moving about 5 inches to the right which almost made me have to change my shorts! While it about scared the you know what out of me, all the noise and expansion is a good thing as it is a sign of a healthy ice sheet.
The fishing was fast at times and non existent at others. One thing about ice fishing Strawberry that makes it so enjoyable is the constant big cutthroat trout that you get to fight. There is a slot limit in place on the lake were you can't keep any cutts between 15-22". The average catch on this trip was 18-20 inches with 2 going over the 22 inch mark. We fished all morning and into the afternoon before we called it quits. Between the 5 of us we ended up landing 70 fish with Jim at the top with 20 and I brought up the rear with 11. It was a fantastic day to get out and wet a line!

Average catch on this trip.
Nathan with his first catch of the day.
Rob with his double. The only one of the day.
There was quite a crowd in the morning.
Something has to give...

December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to you and yours from Ricks Reel Adventures! Guess what santa does after his long night....

December 23, 2011

Schooled By An 8 Year Old

I met back up with rob to see if we could replicate the fast fishing of a week ago. This trip Rob brought his son Matt and I brought a friend that had never been ice fishing before. We arrived at the lake at dark o'clock got set up and as always, Matt had fish on the ice before I could even sit down in my chair! We got a quick picture and then he had a rainbow on the ice before I had my camera put away. Not to long after that my friend Ryan landed his first rainbow through the ice and I later found out that was also his first catch ever which was fun to see. The fishing slowed to a creep after that with fish here and there. It was nothing like the fast action we had last week.
A high note for me on the trip was catching a new personal best for green sunfish that went 8". As I was feeling good about my sunfish, Matt walks over to me with a 15" rainbow he had just landed and says "8 inches huh?" as he looks down at his fish with a smirk. He then walks away with me realizing I just got put in my place by a trash talking 8 year old! I laughed because there wasn't much I could say. He caught more fish than any of us! We also caught some bluegill and a few small perch for a 4 species day on the ice. Although the fishing wasn't as fast as we had hoped, it was a fun getting out on the ice again.
Matt's first fish of many.
Ryan's first ever catch.
Matt and Rob with some keeper bows.
Ryan's first bluegill.
Great shot Ryan took.
My new personal best; 8 inch sunfish
Decent sized bluegill going 9 inches.

December 17, 2011

Who Says Hard Water Is Bad?

I got up bright and early this morning to meet up with my friend Rob to hit the hard water for the first time this season! we made it to the lake and we out fishing at around 7 am. I always forget how much I like to ice fish until that first fish hits my bait and the fight is on. We both slayed them today! the first hour and a half I we couldn't get our second poles going because the fish wouldn't stay off long enough to get them set up. We caught lots of rainbow trout and blue gill with a few yellow perch mixed in. The trout went 14-16", Bluegills were 6-8" and the perch we kept went 9". We were using Jammin Jigs tipped with maggots. Pink and white jigs were the ticket. I couldn't think of a better way to start off the ice season. We kept a few to eat but released the majority of them. Guess what I'll be doing next week? until then...
Rob getting set up

We were not alone on this cold but beautiful day.

A few for the frying pan.