Ice Fishing


2/9/23 @ 9:09 AM
User since 8/4/08
I think with the rainstorm this morning, we can safely say this has been the worst ice season ever. I mean really...it's brutally warm for all of December, gets cold for Christmas for 4 days, then gets brutally warm again for a solid month. Then gets cold again for 3 days, now it will be warm again for the rest of winter. Awful. Need to put this season out of my head ASAP!
Displaying 1 to 15 of 178 posts
3/5/24 @ 8:09 PM
PRO MEMBER User since 12/9/08
From the snowmobiling standpoint, this was my worst winter ever; i.e. I only got to run my machine 2x in the garage.  However, from an ice fishing standpoint, this was absolutely my best year ever - partly due to not going snowmobiling (more days ice fishing vs. riding the sled) and accessibility due to overall lack of snow. 
3/5/24 @ 1:47 PM
User since 10/24/17
Here's some ice out data from N MN couldn't find anything similar for WI.  While there are some crazy outliers like end of March and Mid May, by and large most years ice out is around 3rd week of April give or take a week.  Have a hard time believing that there is just year after year of unsuccessful spawning conditions that would cause populations to crash.  ​
Figure 1. Bar chart showing the frequency of lake ice-out in northern Minnesota lakes using ice-out dates recorded by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The lakes included in this bar chart are Deer Lake (near Deer River, Minn.), Gull Lake, Jessie Lake, Leech Lake (main), Mille Lacs, Pelican, Pokegama (near Grand Rapids, Minn.), Siseebakwet, Split Hand, Swan (near Pengilly), Trout (near Coleraine, Minn.), Trout (Wabana Chain), Wabana, Whitefish, and Winnibigoshish.
Worst...winter...ever photo by Graceonpoint
3/5/24 @ 12:05 PM
User since 2/6/19
I get your point Spike. Southern walleye fisheries are mostly stocked fisheries and that food web issue you mention doesn't much apply because the walleye are stocked at a size where they eat fish and are past that plankton bottleneck.

There is very little walleye natural reproduction in southern reservoirs.  Stocked walleye fisheries in Wisconsin can be good/OK, but they are rarely if ever as good as naturally reproducing populations/fisheries.  Same thing with southern walleye fisheries.
3/5/24 @ 11:28 AM
User since 1/22/18
The study reported on investigates the inter-relationship between the ice out date, spawn, and development of pyhtoplankton. The increasing variability of ice out disrupts the timing of pytoplankton growth relative to the spawn; without food, the walleye fry don't survive. Given that the southern reservoirs don't ice over, the inter-relationship is less dependent upon these factors aligning just right. 
3/4/24 @ 10:09 AM
User since 2/6/19
I've fished Greers Ferry and Bull Shoals and specifically targeted walleye in each.  They are not even moderately good wallyeye fisheries. Wisconsin walleye fisheries are much, much better, even now.  Just because a southern reservoir can produce some giant walleyes does not make it a good walleye population or fishery.

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on what a "good" walleye fishery is.  For further reference look up what the professional walleye fishing tour professionals do when they fish one of those southern walleye fisheries. Not very good.
3/2/24 @ 12:28 PM
User since 2/1/06
you are right, they arent popular and so they arent fished for as much and dont get over harvested...hence their success....lots of southern reservoirs have lots of walleye, and some giants, too....

Like greers ferry lake which has produced walleye over 18lb.  Lake cumberland in KY has produced eyes over 21lb...bull shoals in MO has produced eyes over 20lb...old hickory lake in TN produced a state record 25lber...all of these lakes have produced larger fish than WI.

Lots of those highland reservoirs have perfect situations for them...rock, depth and lots and lots of baitfish.
3/2/24 @ 6:48 AM
User since 2/6/19
What "southern reservoirs" are walleye doing so well in?  I've fished Missouri's reservoirs for walleye. They are no where near the good walleye waters that Wisconsin currently even has.  Most southerners don't know how to catch walleye or what a "good" walleye fishery looks like.
3/1/24 @ 8:48 PM
User since 2/1/06
cat man...funny article.....maybe its the harvest...and/or the fact that many walleye lakes are stocked in lakes have no areas for walleye to reproduce is a bigger issue.

If walleye needed the cold winter, they need to explain why they thrive so well down in southern reservoirs instead of just ignoring that fact....lol.  ​
2/29/24 @ 3:06 PM
User since 7/22/12
Good read.  Taking into consideration the new Walley regulations on all inland lakes which I greatly applaud, & which lower the daily limit by 40%, I’m wondering if the tribes are willing to lower their take by 40%?  We all could benefit greatly benefit from these two efforts correct?  Do we all want to protect our resources, and be part of the solution or continue to be part of the problem.  
2/29/24 @ 2:13 PM
2/28/24 @ 7:24 PM
User since 4/2/02
Just when things were looking better for next week. Saw a couple highs in the 30s and low around 20. Looked today and the temps had totally spiked. Where are the strong cold fronts?
2/28/24 @ 10:44 AM
Gill 1774
Gill 1774
PRO MEMBER User since 6/17/03
Worst winter ever I don’t think so. I’ll take the 74° yesterday over the 16° today anytime  
2/26/24 @ 10:42 AM
User since 2/14/08
Fished a Sawyer county lake with family from Wednesday through Saturday.  Our lake had 9" of good ice, and never lost any ice all week / weekend.  Our best family outing for walleye fishing in the last 20years of getting together.
2/25/24 @ 6:17 PM
User since 7/22/12
West central.  
2/25/24 @ 6:05 PM
User since 2/6/19
OFD, what part of the state are u talking?  Rhinelander / Tomahawk area hasn't lost any ice since Thursday. .  I'm sure it's coming though.
Displaying 1 to 15 of 178 posts
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