Through sheer, stubborn persistance.

Well, we spent another weekend all around fishing. After I got off work Saturday afternoon, we stopped by the Madison Fishing Expo. It was a good show. Lots and lots of fishing lures and poles, lots of sparkly boats. We picked up about 15 brochures for fishing and hunting places all over the state, one out in Idaho, and one in western Ontario. I entered to win at least 5 or 6  guided fishing trips.

Sparkle Boats

Fishing poles

Fishing poles

Musky lures

Musky lures

I also got my picture taken next to the largest outboard motor I’d seen out of water.

Wish list

Big damn motor.

Sunday morning we got up and headed on out to Lake Waubesa. It was sunny and gorgeous, 32 degrees or so. Matt got to play with his underwater camera, and with the flasher.

Playing with the underwater camera.

Playing with the underwater camera.

We didn’t get anything yesterday, and we barely marked any fish on the flasher. We did get to see a few small planes landing on the ice and taking off.

Little plane

Little plane

There were quite a few permanent shanties on Waubesa, especially out over the deeper water. I thought this cow print one made out of an old camper was pretty great.

You think it was pulled by a Here-Ford?

This is, after all, Wisconsin

We moved our tip ups quite a bit yesterday. We started off in about 2 or 3 feet of water, and moved out to about 18 feet, and then back. Some one was nice enough to drill a bunch of holes for us with their gas auger. Talking to him and to one guy that stopped by our shanty as we packed up, the fishing on Waubesa is rough, too. The guy with the auger had seen a couple small pike and bluegills, but not much else. The guy who stopped by our shanty had had his son with him, who caught one perch.

Matt took off most of today, and headed out this morning before I left for work. I was done around 2:30 this afternoon, and I met him out on the ice. He was literally in the middle of Lake Mendota. I figured I spotted our shanty from shore, but on the way out, a really nice guy in a group of permanent shanties stopped me to ask if I wanted help. He let me use his spotting scope, and the shanty I was heading for was definitely ours. He even offered a ride on one of their four wheelers. I hoofed it the rest of the way out with our lunch, and as I open the door of the shanty, what do I see?

Pretty sweet piece of bass

The first fish of the year!!

I wasn’t even mad that he caught a fish without me. He got a nice little white bass. I guess the flasher was a great aid in catching it, since it marks where fish are in a cone shape from the hole you have it in. I didn’t catch anything, but as we jigged we saw a few more fish go past. I had a few nibbles, even, but they aren’t really striking. Someone walked past our shanty and stopped to chat. He was using spring bobbers, which we’d seen at Gander and sort of ignored. With how gently the fish are nibbling, I can see how the increased sensitivity is really helpful. We may need to go get some soon. We’ve got about a month left at ice fishing, and I’d like to get at least a few more fish.

We left before dark today, cause it turned out that Matt had to run by the office after all. Walking out, the guy who let me use his spotting scope stopped us to chat. Apparently, they’d had 7 people out with them, and 21 tip ups in the water, with only 4 small pike to show for it. The same guy said that the perch fishing this year was utterly hopeless, and he’d been fishing Madison waters for years.

I’m not too sure if we’ll be going out next weekend. I know I’m sort of fished out, and even Matt said the same today. But either way, there will be a post. We do still have two deer to finish processing in our chest freezer (8 quarters from 2 big deer), and we still have to dry the hides.  We’ll see though. We do have the rest of the week to get through. We finally have a fish, at least. I’ll cook the fish tomorrow, and share my recipe.

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