This week has been some of the best ice fishing for Trout at Busch Wildlife in years!
I've been spending my time fishing lake 22 and have caught limits of fish every day! Even hooked one around 4 lb's.....had him up to the hole three times, but eventually got off.
Action for some anglers has been slow, but I stumbled across a method that is working well. I'm using a #8 Yellow Chartreuse Wade Blade tipped with a single piece of yellow canned corn. Using my rod holder and Frabill light action rod with 4 lb. test. I'm dropping the jig all the way down till it hits the bottom and reeling up about four inches, and letting it sit. Occasionally I will jig the blade to get the fish's attention.
Also had some luck using a pink #8 blade tipped with a small shiner or chub minnow.
Bites have been light at times, but the spring tip on the rod has helped me detect the slightest nibble. Once they tap it, Set the hook hard on a semi loose drag, and the battles on.
With warming temperatures, I'm not sure how long the ice will be around? So be careful if you go out and good luck.
Fished a relatives lake over in Fosterburg, IL this morning. Ice was nice and clear and approximately 6 - 8 inches thick!
Started out fishing with Wade's Blades and waxworms, but couldn't get bit. Switched to a #6 Black Wade's Blades with minnows and caught a few Crappie. All in all a slow day, but that's how it goes sometimes!
They are predicting 5 -6 inches of snow for tonight and tomorrow. Checked the area Trout Stocking hotline and Busch Wildlife lakes 22 & 23 were stocked with approx. 300 Rainbow Trout yesterday. Vlasis Park was stocked with approx. 95 trout. Should be some great trout fishing through the ice!
Went fishing yesterday with my good friend Steve Miller, and checked out the ice conditions at a lake in central Illinois. To my surprise the ice was 2 1/2 - 3 inches thick! I did not walk out too far from shore, but did drill a couple holes close to the boat docks and fished from there.
Had 3 three subtle bites and one fish that inhaled a pink #8 Wade Blade and waxworm. Caught my first fish of the year on Jan. 2nd. A Rainbow Trout.
The outside temp. on the dash of my truck said one degree, when I left the house in the morning. The sun was out, but it was some of the coldest weather I've fished in, with temps for the day staying in the single digits. I was wearing plenty of layers, so I was comfortable the entire time.
Went fishing today (Sunday Jan. 3rd) out at Busch Wildlfe in Weldon Springs MO. Checked out lakes 22 - 24, and decided to fish lake 23. Ice was about the same thickness as in IL, around 2- 1/2 inches+. But the quality of ice is better this year, than last. The temperature dropped so fast and has stayed cold, so the ice is very strong. But that doesn't mean you should not take precautions. I always take a long rope and a boat cushion to kneel on, just in case!
Fished with a Pink #8 Wade's Blade and waxworms for a while today without any bites, so switched from waxworms to a white Berkley Gulp Maggots, and caught a rainbow trout. The water at lake 23 was kind of dingy and fishing was slow. There were two other guys ice fishing when I left, but they did not have any fish.
I decided to try fishing lake #22. The water looked better at lake 22, but we did not get bit in the short time we fished.
The weather is forecast to be cold all next week, with high temps not to exceed the 20's. By next weekend we should have at least 4" of good solid ice, and will have more bodies of water to fish.
Good luck everyone! Hope you have a chance to get out and try some ice fishing. Not sure how long the cold temps will last, so get out and enjoy it while you can. But most of all....be safe!