Monday, December 20, 2010

skunked in waukesha county

A lot of planning is involved in taking a 4 year old ice fishing. Making sure they are properly dressed for the elements is the number one priority. Lucas (my 4 year old son) and I were meeting up with Neal to fish a small Waukesha County lake that we had not visited since early September. This is smaller lake with some good depth and some clean water. Like most smaller lakes the structure (as far as I know) consisted of a few shallow flats, a main point and a few smaller ones, and a bowl shaped basin that quickly drops to 30 feet. The bottom composition has good amounts of sand and some larger stones present in areas. The previous outing was the first time we had ever fished here and this would be the first time through the ice. Both Neal and I have been eager to return, and passed on some decent bites to go out there and poke around and do some exploring. Catching a good multi-species bag the last time, we thought our chances would be good for getting on a variety of different bites. "Click Here" to view the trip from last time.

70 miles, the entire “Despicable Me” movie, and an order of hot cakes with chocolate milk is what it took to get there. We met Neal there at a quarter to eight and walked out to the main point on the lake. We popped about ten holes within a 50 yard radius and began to mark the depths. We had a shallow hole at 5 feet and not to far away it made its way down to 20. We placed out 6 tip-ups with a variety of sizes of fatheads and shiners making sure that we had all areas off the drop off covered. After the flags were placed we began to try to jig up some pan-fish to get the action started off. The sad thing is, the action never got started. We soaked to tip-ups and pounded those pan-fish rods for almost 2 hours with not even one bite. It wasn’t until a home owner came out and started to snow blow the ice that we decided to pack up and move. I guess they were making a skating rink but that made for a good reason to change things up.

the first area we fished
 We moved back to the north side of the lake close to where we put in. Here there was almost no structure but was where the creek channel enters the lake. We found the shoreline to have a much steeper drop and quickly fell all the way to 30 feet not too far from shore. Again we set our flags and again we pounded for pan-fish. We fished all the way out to 30 feet without even the slightest bit of action.

2nd area we fished
After 5 hours in total we decided to throw in the towel. Lucas was cold and had resorted to playing games on my cell phone 2 hours before then. It was then we finally excepted the skunk!

the skunk
In retrospect, I will never learn a new lake while fishing with a 4 year old again. Even though he still had fun spending the day with his dad and his buddy Neal I could tell he was disappointed. Sure there’s a few good lessons here-
  • Your not always gonna catch fish.    
  • Fishing is about spending time with family and friends.
  • Its called fishing not catching for a reason.
I’m sure the list goes on but nothing is better then the smile of pride he wears when we catch fish together!

there's that look!


  1. I love the skunk picture. Pretty much says it all.


  2. Hey Blake - You know what I often say, "Sometimes the fish win." Them darn skunks been smellin' up my latest fishing trip also.

  3. And its OK for the fish to win every once in a while just not too often!

  4. Clear water lakes through the ice can be quite tricky when it is sunny. What were the conditions? Just trying to learn a few things here...for my memory bank! I know that if it's going to be a sunny day I would head for a dark or murky water lake instead. Food for thought.

  5. Kirk you are correct it was sunny. Thanks for some insight!

  6. Hahahahaha ... nice skunk pic, Blake. Hopefully you can retire it now.