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Long day on Keuka


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My son and I ice fished Keuka north end  today for the second time this week and the fishing was spotty. A couple days ago we we had good success with the perch and ended up with 45-50 between us 11 of which were jumbos (13-14 inches. We worked for them though and kept on the move (over 70holes drilled between us). Most of them came in 15 -22 ft of water. The ice is 4 -6 inches of mostly good hard ice as of today with sections of broken and refrozen ice on the way out.


Today we arrived at 8:30 AM which turned out was too late because some guys had action on the perch very early and it ended about the time we arrived. The previous time  the action came in the afternoon so who knows what those little finicky dudes will do. Last time they hammered our bait but this time they were VERY tentative and we had a lot of lookers that just looked and left despite multiple changes of jigs and different bait. The tipups had three releases with nobody home and the minnows gone (probably perch). Minnows and waxies seem to be the preferred bait jigging. We ended up with 21 perch between us today with no real jumbos. The previous outings perch especially the jumbos were stuffed with 2 inch minnows and baby sunfish and a few perch were stuffed with freshwater shrimp.


We saw a few snowmoblies way out south in the middle of the lake. Good luck to any of you that make it out there this weekend and stay safe....I hope this info helps.

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Sounds like you had your work cut out for you Les, 70 holes wow thats a lot of drilling!!! I guess that's the hard water way of trolling. LOL. Here's a question, does the wind direction matter when ice fishing? Or do you find a shelf and drill hole that follow the drop offs towards deeper water. I don't know much about ice fishing other than its always windy and blue a$$ cold. My uncles were on Black Lake last week, a couple of nice perch and a lot of 18" to 24" pike, Dave said it was -7 and 20-30 mph winds, that to me doesn't sound like fun. In late Feb. they head up to Maine where Clark, his freind has a cabin then they sled 8 miles to a lake they fish. It has Lakers and brookies and you have to drill buy hand and last year it got into the -20s for a HIGH, anyway good to hear you caught some nice perch and you got out, that's the important part! Good luck. PAP.

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Hey Pap -  Most "normal" people (I use that term loosely because we ice fishermen may not be normal :lol: ) use shelters and have portable propane heaters going in them and face their shelters so the least amount of surface area is facing the wind if they have the one or two  man type and for severe wind the larger square units are often anchored with screw in ice anchors. I have a Clam 2 person shelter but I seldom use it these days and it now sits down cellar. I go with just a sled with all my stuff in it and I have an "old school" pop up tent that I can use if needed. I like being extremely mobile and instead of sitting in the shelter and maybe moving a few times during the day, I am constantly on the move and out in the open and I dress very warmly in many layers. For probably 30 or 40 years I merely took a bucket with jigging rods, and auger, and tip ups and or tip downs as the "old school" guys that I learned from did. You then always locate with your back to the wind so it is not in your face, you stay somewhat warmer, and you can detect even small movements in your line unrelated to the wind (i.e. fish) by "blocking" the wind. I also drill a bunch of holes around the area and let them "calm down" before making the circuit around them moving my stuff as I go. Yes I do look for dropoffs for some species or even small depressions in sand bottm sometimes or weed beds etc. and it depends on the body of water and the species of fish in part.  I also like being out where I can see what is going on around me. I've witnessed coyotes and foxes crossing the ice and eagles flying overhead and many other wonderful things out there. In the old days being out in the open was key to learning about techniques and watching old timers but today it is virtually impossible because of the fact that 90 percent  of the folks are in shelters of various types. Many of the old timers would try to disguise what they were doing and they even had covers on their buckets they sat on with a hole in it so that they could jig up fish and secretly put them in the bucket without others observing it :lol:  and they crouched in positions so that you had a hard time seeing exactly what jigging motions they used. I can relate to your uncles situation....I once arrived at Keuka Lake by myself in the early AM and nobody was there (geez I have the place to myself :) ) and I had brought minnows as bait for my tip ups...I thought it felt a bit colder than usual but I hadn't checked the weather report the night before. I went to put a minnow on a tip up and it froze the moment I took it out of the bucket and my fingers started freezing to the minnow. I later found out it was 6 below zero :lol:  Ice fishing is not for the faint of heart  nor for entirely sane people :)

Edited by Sk8man
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