Sunday, March 13, 2022

Farewell & Adieu

Red-winged blackbirds are calling in the marshes. Stonflies are hatching on thin blue lines. Osprey and river herring are arriving any day. All signs pointing to winter's last gasps and another ice season's end. 

The weeks and months leading up to ice fishing are filled with anticipation. Hours upon hours devoted to prepping gear, securing bait, analyzing forecasts, and checking ice. Then, after arctic blasts transform our lakes and ponds, we fish when we can until its gone. Sometimes the season doesn't last long and the brevity of it all adds to the allure. 

This year my hardwater season lasted 51 days from January 14 to March 5. In that time I made six trips to three water bodies--the first half focusing on northern pike, the second half reuniting with a favorite trout lake I hadn't fished since 2011. Those two styles of fishing are incredibly different, but each enjoyable and exciting in their own right. 

It's always bittersweet packing away the ice gear in the rafters of my basement, but bidding farewell to winter means saying hello to spring and all of the amazing outdoor opportunities it brings. 

Here a is a short video from my ice season finale and a few other memorable moments that will hold me over until next winter.