HOT OF THE PRESS. THE FISH OF A LIFETIME!
Regular Hooked contributor Dave Shmyr is a top notch angler both on the ice and open water. He has been out in Central Alberta chasing stocked trout. He just informed us that he landed his personal best rainbow trout. Here is a the beast.
It measured 29.75 inches and weighed in at 11.76 pounds! Dave caught it using a small hook and nightcrawler. Congrats Dave on this magnificent catch! See Dave’s update at the end of this report.
Lake Manitoba is producing some nice walleye but anglers are working hard for the fish. Ice conditions are uneven after a windy freeze. Matt Gelley was out last weekend with this partner and they managed to key in on some fish.
Stephanie and I had a fantastic weekend hunting down walleyes. It was a bit of a challenge with the endless amount of nets covering the south basin. We managed to ice a bunch, nonetheless. Seems like the bite is more consistent from 2:00pm till dark, not much action in the morning. So if you like to sleep in; this could be your destination! Also caught the fattest slot fish that I’ve ever seen. Best baits seem to be the standard jig and shiner combo as well as the hyper glide tipped with a minnow head. Took a bit of coaxing to generate bites.
Figured out the cadence to get bit as well as waiting longer than normal on the hook set. We had a great day! low winds, thick safe ice and hot sun! Felt like March. Also we found sand frozen in the ice at certain spots. Glad I went with the gas auger with the chipper blades. Can’t wait to see what next weekend brings. Full Vid coming out from the last couple of trips.
See more reports from Matt on his Facebook page Matt G Outdoors
Roger & Sue Gere
Spent a lot of time over the last two weeks trying to figure out how to consistently catch stocked trout. There was some success but even more frustration! I did get some redemption on Lake of the Prairies the last few days. The bite has been fantastic, sometimes even into dark. We have been moving around a lot but eventually we find the walleye. We have caught lots of eating size fish but also lots over the slot size.
We have been fishing 15-24′ feet but others are having success shallower, depending on the part of
the lake .
There is anywhere from eight inches of ice and up. There are some side by sides on the ice but with sheer ice cleats are needed on your footwear. There are also some nasty pressure ridges to stay away from. Hopefully with the arrival of some colder weather these will get better.
We have been jigging with live and frozen minnows when the bite is hot.
Stephan Vigier retired from professional hockey this year and is now living back in the province. His partner Kaitlyn Lawes, like most, has been grounded by the pandemic. Which means that they have both traded in indoor ice for the outdoor variety. This extra time means ice fishing is a priority and have many adventures planned over the winter. They crossed Beautiful Lake in the Duck Mountains off their bucket list in the last couple weeks.
The story has changed somewhat in the Whiteshell Provincial Park and area. While crappie and stocked trout dominated earlier, lake cisco from Big Whiteshell have been added.
The lakes in the region are starting to firm up. Smaller lakes have a good eight inches. The larger lakes, like Lake of the Woods are still off limits, especially given the warm weather of the last two weeks. Jeff Gustafson hopes to get out next week to check out some water. He has been busy out in the field, taking a nice break from the fishing grind from the Bassmaster Elite Series.
Jay Siemens, meantime, has been on a mission with his video series. He has already posted a number over the last two weeks on his first ice adventures near his home of Kenora, Ontario. My favourite is when he sight fishes for brook trout. Check it out.
Most lakes in the province have enough ice now to fish safely. Down in the southern part of the province, anglers have been fishing Last Mountain ice for a couple of weeks. The lake itself had a good freeze up with solid, flat conditions. Last Mountain guide Layne Maier has been out and posts this interesting video.
Wes David, Fishing the Wild West TV Show
Ice fishing summer weather conditions.
Central and southern Alberta has experienced extremely warm weather conditions for the last 14-days. At the time of this writing, it was 15-degrees Celsius with 60 kilometre Chinook winds blowing out of the west. Even with the warm weather conditions, there are still good ice conditions. However, anglers have to be careful of soft ice, open water, and floodwaters on top of the ice, especially on the southern Alberta reservoirs. However, on the trout waters, many of the trout species, especially rainbow trout are taking every opportunity to feed on an easy meal. Due to the windblown ice conditions, during the mid-afternoon when the sun is penetrating the ice and lighting up the underwater world, anglers jigging small lures like a #6 Len Thompson Lure, or a Mini-Series SteelShad, or Drop Shot rigging a Bingo Bug from Lucky Bug Lures are all producing aggressive bites from rainbow trout.