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Lake: St. Vrain State Park (Barbour Ponds)

Maximum hole size allowed? Hazard!!!

Post By: spicyhombre      Posted: 1/3/2021 3:03:44 PM     Points: 6162    
I fished Sandpiper today and was not happy to see someone has opened up a 10í x 15í section of ice so they can fish from shore. So much for the 10 inch legal maximum hole size. Rangers kept driving by to make sure people are parking legally but they ignored the guy fishing this dangerous hole.

This is so dangerous! Someone a. Easily walk into this area after skin ice forms. Disgraceful that it is being ignored. There should be something indicating the hazard at very least.
 Reply by: anglerwannabe      Posted: Jan. 3, 3:08:54 PM     Points: 62366    
 Reply by: Beerme      Posted: Jan. 3, 3:09:35 PM     Points: 83    
I've seen people throw a cinder block tied to a rope to break up the ice so they can fish from shore. My opinion if you don't have an auger just ask someone to drill a hole. Most folks would be happy to.
 Reply by: FishingJunkie      Posted: Jan. 4, 8:58:25 AM     Points: 1816    
Irresponsible and dumb
 Reply by: SirGreg88      Posted: Jan. 4, 10:34:25 AM     Points: 74    
I don't know. If the ice is so thin that you cant walk on it and throwing rocks breaks it up--------whats the problem really?
 Reply by: FISH IZZLE      Posted: Jan. 4, 10:46:45 AM     Points: 3    
I have no problem with this...if the ice is thin enough that throwing a rock on it goes right through, then this guy was just doing a favor to anyone that would otherwise be trying to ice fish it....guys break ice in this manner all the time for other activities, like goose hunting. The 10 inch hole thing only applies to ice fishing, there is not law that says you can't break ice.
 Reply by: FishingJunkie      Posted: Jan. 4, 11:35:52 AM     Points: 1816    
I guess I was commenting not about the person fishing there, but about the person(s) that made the big hole..... the problem is, the ice will skim over in that one spot get covered with a thin layer of snow and may create a bad day for someone.
 Reply by: spicyhombre      Posted: Jan. 4, 11:38:21 AM     Points: 6162    
I think this is a huge problem and here is why.
*This wasn't all broken up by tossing a few rocks. The chunks of ice were broken and pulled onto the ice.
*The rest of the lake is frozen and full of people ice fishing as well as people walking on the ice out of interest. The majority of these people were kids, elderly, or inexperienced ice fishermen.
*This is a very popular pond for convenient trips and serves as a great beginners pond.
*The hole is 20 feet from parking spots and this is a spot that people commonly enter and exit the ice.
*Overnight temperatures will turn this huge hole into a 10' x 15' area of 1/2" ice surrounded by 3-4" ice and will take considerable time to become safe and this main entrance/exit area will be thinner than the surrounding areas for a long time making it a future danger as we start losing ice again.
*If we get a dusting of snow, even the most experienced ice folks could not see it coming.

I would have no problem with this if there were indicators around it that it is thin ice but there isn't anything. In parts of the country where large holes are permitted it is expected that tree branches will be placed around the hole once you are done with it to prevent someone else from accidentally breaking through.

I spoke with a gentleman who was checking out the ice before bring his 4 grandchildren fishing the next day. I can not imagine the horror for him to see one or more of his grandchildren going through. Possibly even worse would be watching your grandfather fall through and have a heart attack in the cold water. The deepest area was only like 6' deep so you could swim/walk out potentially but some people panic and cold water can put people in shock in a hurry. In my opinion catching a few slimers is not worth this risk. Have some respect for other safety and take responsibility for warning others of the danger if you must take this risk.

The worst part is how unnecessary this is. He wasn't catching as many fish as he could have if he just used one of the many existing holes available on this popular ice fishing pond. I would have popped a bunch of holes for him if he asked as I am sure almost anyone out there would have. When I first started ice fishing I just re-opened holes at this pond and others with a small pry bar as easy as can be. If he had to fish from shore he could have joined those on Blue Heron where there is plenty of open water on one side of the lake. This is all completely unnecessary.
 Reply by: Captain Hook      Posted: Jan. 4, 11:46:03 AM     Points: 328    
Park Rangers aren't doing their job! Need to call their manager!
 Reply by: *gone fishin*      Posted: Jan. 4, 1:04:40 PM     Points: 33    
I was out there yesterday and was gonna attempt it but didnít feel like falling through for some stocker trout. Every spot I checked on the shoreline my spud bar went through. Use extreme caution! Iím really surprised I didnít se anyone go through
 Reply by: Ajax5240      Posted: Jan. 4, 1:37:05 PM     Points: 31578    
Did you say anything to the rangers about it?
 Reply by: Fish-On-Son!      Posted: Jan. 4, 1:45:21 PM     Points: 245    
If they're breaking the ice with the intent to fish through it then this is completely illegal. The max hole for fishing in Colorado is 10". The park ranger should have issued a ticket.
 Reply by: spicyhombre      Posted: Jan. 4, 2:07:32 PM     Points: 6162    

I called the ranger office and they said they were aware but they didn't seem concerned to me. I voiced my concern and the ranger basically said "thanks" but I didn't get the feeling they were going to do anything about it.
 Reply by: Ajax5240      Posted: Jan. 4, 2:21:17 PM     Points: 31578    
That is disappointing! There has to be ways to run this issue up the chain of command or people are going to keep doing it.

Must have taken some work to open up a hole that big, would have expected them to get shut down in the process
 Reply by: spicyhombre      Posted: Jan. 4, 2:24:47 PM     Points: 6162    
Someone mentioned to me that people have been keeping that section open by breaking it daily but can't verify with first hand knowledge.
 Reply by: SirGreg88      Posted: Jan. 4, 3:57:53 PM     Points: 74    
If you are taking kids out on any front range impoundment in a year like this.................. fill in the blank. Especially if you do it without any due diligence. Just step out there with everybody and see if its thick enough.......? I guess we need to manage everything for the lowest common denominator.. Par for the course..........
 Reply by: Walleye Guy      Posted: Jan. 4, 5:34:12 PM     Points: 124    
Not sure if this is still the rule but in Minnesota if you spearfished thru the ice with a 3x5 hole (or whatever the legal size was) you were required to make folks aware of said hole after you left. As I r call it was common to see a branch or Christmas tree left in the hole .

Seems smart to me. My wife,once stepped out of my truck and put her foot in a snow covered 10 inch hole. She went in over her ankle , got a wet foot but was not injured. Lucky.
 Reply by: malty falcon      Posted: Jan. 4, 5:38:28 PM     Points: 7033    
I don't like stupid people, but I expect stupid people. Since I don't want to talk with or to stupid people, I'd just let it go, maybe call the ranger.

Kind of a drag, but my recreation time is too short to play cop everywhere. I am already forced to do it in my businesses, and that alone is stressful enough for me. Sorry if this seems selfish, but the tool who broke out the giant area is the most selfish of all, endangering others safety for their own(stupid) pleasure.

Please don't let this hazard become stressful to you. It would be easier and less bother to just go and find some brush to throw around the area. Did you know that's how they mark large areas of holes in Wisconsin or Montana on frozen lakes?
 Reply by: FishHuntNow      Posted: Jan. 6, 7:06:03 PM     Points: 1481    
Just when I thought I'd seen it all. To be so obsessed to fish to break the ice is a bit silly. Next thing you know he'll say he has the right to do it because he pays for a fishing license.
 Reply by: TADA32      Posted: Jan. 6, 8:28:10 PM     Points: 18653    
I use to have a 10 inch auger and went through one of the holes up to my hip. thought I broke my leg.
 Reply by: Kithme      Posted: Jan. 6, 10:05:21 PM     Points: 953    
Let me see if I understand the law appropriately.

If I broke thru the ice and create a hole larger than 10Ē, I could be fined?

Hmm, I better lose some weight.

If I spudded around and broke off a section of ice bigger than 10Ē, I could be fined?

Hmm, I better poke around carefully and not break any ice.

If the ice was already broken, can I fish it from shore? Or will I be fined? Unclear if the person in the picture broke it or not.

The subject title is misleading. I do agree that it causes a potential hazardous situation but I donít think maximum hole size applies in this situation.

Life is tough, I believe in personal accountability and safety. I would not let my kids on the ice unless I know the ice is safe for them and they will know where they can roam. Otherwise they need to be close by. Just like in the rec center swimming pool rules, if your kids are out of reach you have wandered too far.

Happy New Year, Stay safe and tight lines.

 Reply by: FishHuntNow      Posted: Jan. 7, 7:08:44 AM     Points: 1481    
Do we even have fish big enough really to need a 10 inch hole? I feel like an 8 inch auger is good enough.
 Reply by: Fish-On-Son!      Posted: Jan. 7, 1:13:01 PM     Points: 245    
Colorado absolutely has fish big enough to justify a 10" hole. If you don't know that you're probably doing something wrong LOL
 Reply by: FishHuntNow      Posted: Jan. 7, 1:43:40 PM     Points: 1481    
"Doing something wrong"? Sure I can justify a 10 inch but nothing a 8 inch hole hasn't fit through. I've caught some big cats and lake trout that came through just fine. Its a preference right? I think a lot easier to get a fish out with the extra inches. :D
 Reply by: Ajax5240      Posted: Jan. 7, 1:56:30 PM     Points: 31578    
All guys want an extra 2".....
 Reply by: Fish-On-Son!      Posted: Jan. 7, 2:59:50 PM     Points: 245    
Haha!!! I needed a good laugh. Thx!
 Reply by: FishHuntNow      Posted: Jan. 7, 5:37:03 PM     Points: 1481    
Haha you guys are awesome!

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