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North Park Ice Fishing Report 12/5/2010
Lake John Resort Release
If you read last week's article, then you know why I'd like to thank myself for doing such a fine job getting the North Park ice fishing season underway. And now that the opening ceremonies and festivities have finally come to an end, we can all get down to some serious ice fishing. And that's just what a lot of us did this past week.

However, before we get to the details of who didn't catch any fish this week, let's go over some of the particulars. The very first rule of ice fishing is that even though you are sitting right next to your fishing partner, with your line in a hole separated from his only by an ice cube, using the exact same thing in the exact same manner, it doesn't mean that you will catch fish just because he is. The second rule of ice fishing is not to sit next to him in the first place just because he's catching fish (see Rule #1).

Now that we have that straight, the ice on area lakes is about 8 inches, and up until last night (today is Sunday, 12/5) there was very little to no snow on lake surfaces, making them slick and making creepers an exceptional idea. Even after the couple of inches we got last night, I would definitely keep the creepers handy. Although I have not seen or heard of any caution areas on lake surfaces, a few areas on local impoundments have edge ice that has been buckled due to the fast freeze-up. Even though most of these areas are directly along the shoreline in very shallow water, they should be avoided. Not that I ever recommend taking anything heavier than myself atop lake surfaces, I did expect to see some ATVs and/or snowmobiles on the ice this past weekend, but haven't as yet. When anglers do begin to drive vehicles
out on the hard water, those buckled up areas at entry-points may create high-centering problems, so use caution. I don't know this first-hand, but I have heard that if you go really fast, you will literally fly right over the problem area.

On Lake John there is really no consistency in location of fish. All of the points, along with the boat ramp areas and choke cherry bushes, have been popular and are producing quite well. The largest fish of the week, a 28.25 inch, 9 lb. 4 oz. 'Bow, was landed near the spillway. Also, there's very little consistency as far as what the fish are hitting, and that's a fairly good thing because any of your favorites could be what they're looking for. No one pattern, lure, or jig seems to be producing more than any other. Try dark-colored marabou jigs, Kastmasters in gold or copper, salt & pepper tube jigs, and glow-in-the-dark Rat Finkees, Shrimpo's and Ratso's. Any and all can be tipped with a meal or wax worm, however, it's not really necessary.

There is no need to venture far, as most trout are being taken in 8 to 12 feet of water. Of course, not all fish in John are as big as the one mentioned above, but we are seeing all different age classes, and this
should be a great season for trophy class trout.

Besides what's in the first fishing report, I haven't heard much of what the action is doing at Cowdrey Lake and over on the Delaneys. I do know that ice conditions are very similar to that on John, and the catching has been decent. I do not know the details of the exact locations and precisely what is being used. Just be aware of the possession and slot limits of all three Delaneys, and that the trio is fly and lure only, with no bait of any kind allowed.

P.S. Start planning now for the Lake John/Cowdrey Lake Ice Fishing Contest coming up January 8th and 9th, 2011. Bigger cash prizes this year -- starting with a $1,000 grand prize! For more
details, contact the North Park Chamber of Commerce at 970-723-4600 or Lake John Resort at 970-723-3226.

P.S.S. Just a short time ago, I received a call from loco angler Dick Snavely. He asked me to look out the window at the lake. When I looked out at the spot that Dick had been fishing most of the afternoon, expecting to see him holding up a huge fish, I instead saw him standing right next to his Ford Bronco, at the spot where Dick had been fishing most of the afternoon. I guess ATV's and snowmobiles won't
be such a big deal. Oh yeah, Dick also told me that his dog fell through a short distance from where his Bronco stood, next to shore in one of those buckled up spots.

Bill Willcox
Lake John Resort
Member comments
by: ObsessedFisherman on 12/8/2010 12:37:00 PM
Thank you Bill