Sunday, January 4, 2015

Be careful on the ice, despite recent cold temps

We've definitely had colder weather this past week with even lower temperatures predicted for this coming week.
"She's makin' ice," is a common expression among hard water anglers. She may be making ice but be sure, before heading out, that there is enough to support you.
Last night, on my way home from mass, I saw several guys on clear ice on a couple different northern  Oakland County lakes.
The good thing, they weren't out very far. I don't know if there was a bad side to this other than it was dark, the ice was clear and we haven't had that many cold days yet.
I've said in other columns and blogs that test the ice before getting too far out. Wear a good pfd and take a spud along.
Use the spud to test the ice in front of you. If it goes through easily, turn around and get back on shore as soon as you can. Don't try and find another way across the ice thinking the ice may be thicker over this or that way.
How much ice is safe ice? No DNR official or sheriff's department water rescue will give you a number. In fact, most will tell you there is no such thing as safe ice.
So, before you head out, get information from local sporting goods shops, other anglers, then knock the dust off that spud you no longer use because of a power auger.
Leave that auger at home for the first few trips and take something along that will test the ice. And wear a pfd.

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