Monday, March 9, 2015

26 Inches of Ice Lake Hopatcong

This ice season just kept getting colder. Until today. With temperatures in the 50's and more forecast, Laurie's sent out the message that it's all but over; soon ice will melt away from shore. One more weekend, she thinks. Ice will likely remain on the lake into early April, but getting to it and fishing on it safely will become impossible sometime fairly soon.

Oliver and I fished on seven inches January 17th. Even with a lot of snow and water on the ice for insulation, it managed to thicken to about 26 inches. I took my son and his friend Will yesterday, really hoping Will would get his first pickerel and good sized. Fishing Henderson Bay, the area we tried Joe Landolfi and I ice fished in 2001, catching a 25 and 22-inch pickerel. Not a flag popped yesterday, but five hours really wrung out all the day to day garbage, the sort of stuff you don't scatter around like trash, but let sun, breeze, calm dusk and time's persistent presence dissolve like vapor. We came back to things empowered by the big world out there; we took it all in and became stronger than the trifling demands that hide in corners behind walls.

Will Olsen sinks it. Photo originally featured in The Fisherman.

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