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North Park Ice Fishing Report 12/29/13

Bill Willcox, Lake John Resort
North Park Ice Fishing Report

December 29, 2013

Hello fellow sportsmen and women. Itís about time for an ice fishing update Ďcause I missed the one last week. Now I could give you a bunch of reasons and excuses for not putting fingers to keyboard, but the only person that would make feel better is meÖ Well, my sister was here for the holidays and I had to make the punch. The shoveling and plowing wasnít done yet - and still isnít Ė because it was really good punch, ...that does feel better. Anyway, here is the latest Ė if I can stay out of the punch.

I havenít personally been out on the ice lately and current reports are varying as far as thickness is concerned, depending on location and lake. Iíve recently heard 8 inches on North Delaney and 15 inches in some places on Lake John. However, there was a full size truck driving all over North a week ago, and hardly anyone is yet to venture out on John except with ATVís and snow machines. Go figure. I do believe the average layer on area lakes to be 10-12 inches, possibly a little more, but as always use caution.

The weather has been quite typical for Jackson County so far this season. The up and down experience of several days in a row with snow, blowing snow, and sub-zero temps, then a change to sunshine, fair temperature readings, and little or no wind conditions. The hard part has been trying to predict whatís coming, because even the weather service has been wrong much of the time. Welcome to North Park. Also, due to the periods of blowing snow mentioned earlier, you do not want to come into Lake John from Cowdrey. The northern segment of Road 7 is closed for the winter. Our county road crew put up signs at each end of the impassable section stating this. However, during the week of Christmas, several drivers in this area lost their ability to read.

Unlike the weather, fishing on local lakes has been fairly consistent. Lake John has been producing 15 to 17 inch trout on a regular basis. Of course you have to sort through some smaller ones, but that just keeps the day interesting. White has been a go-to color for Squirminí Squirts, Rat Finkees and marabou jigs, enhancing the bite with a small morsel of meat. Pink and chartreuse are running a close second. Jigging lures such as Dominators and Swedish Pimples are also productive.

Some good friends spent time on North Delaney over the holidays and did very well using Minnow Tubes, marabou jigs, Teaser Tails and Kastmasters. Again, white was a beneficial color while using the plastics, with crawdad and motor oil shades also producing. For the lures, solid gold or silver worked best. Black is a great color to start with when using a marabou jig. Remember there are no baits allowed on any of the three Delaney Butte Lakes and all have special regulations, slot limits and possession limits. Please read the fishing booklet and familiarize yourself with the signs around each lake. Cowdrey Lake has been putting out some good numbers of smaller rainbows but I havenít heard of any recent slabs. There are definitely some big fish in Cowdrey, so keep putting in your time. Use the same offerings that you would for Lake John, as they will work in both lakes.

Less than 2 weeks until the Lake John/Cowdrey Lake Ice Fishing Contest on January 11 and 12. Both big money and big fish to be had. Make your plans right now for a super good time!!

Bill Willcox

Lake John Resort
Operation Game Thief
Call to report illegal fishing/hunting:
Email CPW