I swear I wasnt asleep at the switch. I called about ice conditions at Magic Reservoir mid month and it sounded like people were sitting around the reservoir with Hawaiian shirts and tropical drinks. OK, maybe thats a stretch, but there was no ice.
Two weeks later, its not only frozen, the Fish and Game office in Jerome is reporting about 8 inches of ice and good fishing for trout and perch.
Horsethief Reservoir also has about 8 inches of ice and there are reports of good-to-excellent trout fishing.
Lake Cascade is now frozen over, but its not as thick as Horsethief. People are fishing it, but caution is advised and it may be too soon for four wheelers and snowmobiles.
The ice conditions could change quickly as highs this week are supposed to barely creep above freezing and lows will dip into single digits.
Ice fishing is another sign of the season for me. Winter is really here when the ski areas are all open (check) and people are ice fishing (double check).
Its a fun time of year, and I always get a kick out of people on the ice. Its not just a fishing trip, its a party, and the ingenuity of ice anglers never ceases to amaze me. I love their contraptions and creatures of comfort, from sleds to tents to propane heaters to portable fire pits.
A campfire on the ice cracks me up every time. You can bet the folks sitting around it arent grumpy old men. They catch some nice fish, too.
So tip of the hat to the ice anglers. Your season has arrived. Enjoy it. But I really dont have to tell you that, you already know how.