One of the things people tell you about living in the north is “embrace the winter and find things to do.”
With the Ontario Government putting the whole region in lockdown added with rising COVID numbers in Algoma. Many people are searching for things to do.
It may drive you to try activities that are outside as it is the only place we can currently recreate. One activity you may want to try is ice fishing.
Avid ice anglers will tell you it’s not for everyone. They will also tell you the old adage, ice fishing is something you only try once.
That comes from their experience of watching people come and go over years but also the knowledge that the ice is unforgiving and not a fun place to be if you are not prepared.
If you do wish to try it Klaus Delksen at Birch Lodge in Blind River has some tips for the first-time angler.
He started with a warning that right now it is not safe for anyone to be ice-fishing. On the weekend he cut a test hole and it was 4 inches so he could fish and they did have a few people.
Yesterday he went to cut a hole and was driving in slush.
Delkson said he has had years like this before. 13 years ago he had this happen and then he was fishing within the week. “We need a good cold snap and we’ll be back”.
When it comes to tips about the sport, he had a few.
“Never go fishing alone the first time, take someone experienced with you to show you the ropes,” said Delksen. “Make sure you tell people where you are going, never go along or make sure you have a floating suit.”
When asked about shelters and tents and lots of the big gear that is mentioned in other articles Klaus said that stuff comes over time.
The basics he says you do need are a couple of poles and a hand ice augur and a few good lures.
The Ontario government has a website dedicated to ice fishing, it can be found here Ice fishing at Ontario.ca.
If you have tips or ideas about things to do please feel free to leave them in the comment section.