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Discussion Starter #1
I can only assume that for a lot of you, the recent warmer weather has got you thinking about boat fishing when a lot of our local reservoirs are still hard deck covered. Ice fishing is still available, but most of you have given up on it thinking it is no longer safe or advisable to venture out on the hard deck. I can appreciate your caution. However, with respect, I don't share your concerns.

A week ago Thursday, I was on Pineview. There wasn't a single other person fishing it from 7:15 AM until 2:45 PM. The edges at the Port Ramp were as solid as concrete and the ice was 18" thick. I iced 15 perch that day. Yesterday, I was on Mantua. Again, not a single other person fishing it other than me and a friend fishing with me. And, again, the edges were solid as concrete, and the ice was 14" think. We iced trout, perch, and gills (16 total fish).

I will be ice fishing again next week Tuesday & Thursday (weather permitting). My only concern this time of year is how the edges are holding up on the local waters. Some of lower elevation waters (Willard, Utah Lake, Deer Creek) are already ice free. Some of the higher elevation waters are already being filled and the edges are open water too wide to safely cross without planks or waders making machine access (SnowDog) a no-go. A few lakes that don't vary much in depth from draw done and re-filling (like Matua) will likely be good to ice fish until the end of March. Uinta lakes will be good to fish well into May if you have a snow machine to get you up to them.

I'll put away the ice gear in a couple more weeks and then get the boat ready for the soft deck season. I'm planning some early trips to Jordanelle for kokanee this year. And Willard should be starting to turn on in late April/early May.

I do think that folks quit too early on ice fishing here in Utah, but that's just me. Y'all have a great year fishing in 2021 and tight lines to ya wherever you walk on water or float your boat. :D
 
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We went up just last week, it was great. Zero slush, ice around 16-17". Great fishing conditions. Handful of people fishing not far from where the road ended (we rode atvs 4 miles around to the north end, only ones there).

-DallanC
 

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Welp, I was supposed to go tomorrow, but the weather conditions have changed that. (again) :cry: My having a day off recently has singlehandedly reduced the drought from the previous dire situation. :roll:

That said, I have been having so much fun fly fishing that I've at least amply scratched my fishing itch.

One other addendum too. Depending on the weather, Strawberry and Fish Lake frequently have safe ice into the first or second week of April and spring fishing on the hard deck is often excellent. See you on the ice!
 

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The mixed spring/winter weather finds me out on the yard cleaning up the winter debris, and prepping for the spring. I'll give up 2-4 weeks of ice fishing to have the yard chores completed. I don't want to miss out on the first couple weeks of ice-off. Walley, Bass and Wiper are my go to in April anyway.
 

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I've been jinxed on the ice this year, so my enthusiasm for ice fishing is kinda shot. But I'm really excited for what's coming up because I'm going to have grandkids in my boat again!

For better or worse and despite our objections, our kids made the choice to isolate me and Grandma this past year. Well, vaccine just put an end to that nonsense. I'm so ready for screams and giggles, silly questions and tangled lines again that I don't even care about my jinx. I figure a dose of my grandkids' nonsense will chase it away, anyway. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I'm so ready for screams and giggles, silly questions and tangled lines again that I don't even care about my jinx. I figure a dose of my grandkids' nonsense will chase it away, anyway. :cool:
Amen Brother Finnegan; Amen! 🙂
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
I'll give up 2-4 weeks of ice fishing to have the yard chores completed.
Dude - your priorities way out of whack. Fishing should ALWAYS come first. Know what I mean Vern? 😁
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Depending on the weather, Strawberry and Fish Lake frequently have safe ice into the first or second week of April and spring fishing on the hard deck is often excellent.
Yes Sir; for the past 5 seasons, I've fished the Berry through the last week in March. Unfortunately, family issues/obligations canceled that for this season. Tight lines to all y'all that know about and take advantage of this golden opportunity to extend the season. 🙂
 

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My wife would definitely stay in the car. In fact, she would never get in the car to begin with. She grew up in Phenix for a while. She doesn't like to be cold AT ALL.
 

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Huh... My wife loves it. I gave her some really nice insulated Clam Womans ice fishing bibs for Christmas a few years ago, she absolutely loves them. I mention the possibility of going ice fishing the coming saturday, she'll run out the next day and buy some waxie's just to be ready.

Bought her a different camera for ice fishing this year, she sat there all giddy talking to her self for 3 hours... lmao. "OOohh a big one" "TakeItTakeItTakeItTakeItTakeIt..." "CRAP Missed it" "GOT HIM!!"

Too fun.

-DallanC
 

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I got in an unexpected trip last Saturday and my wife offered again for next week. My wife knows I recharge in the outdoors and wants me energetic to take care of our girl for her 2nd week back at work.

After seeing Johnnycake's post I'm pretty set on getting my little girl on the ice on the 2022/23 season for her 2nd birthday. Worst case is I can duct tape the rod to her arm. Would be tempted for next year but she's tiny as a late preemie and I can't afford to buy a smaller auger.

If/when I get the chance I'll enjoy late ice as much as ice off. It's been stated already but the solitude is great and the action can be fast. The hard deck and upland game are by far what keeps me going during the dog days of summer.
 

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Get a wife that likes ice fishing, problem solved :mrgreen:

-DallanC
Oh she loves fishing! Been out on the ice with me plenty of times. After having both hips replaced, three back fusions, chronic pain, its hard for her to get out anymore. :cry: I sold my fishing boat (16' aluminum) a few years ago with intensions of buying a 21' cuddy so she could lay down if needed. That all went out the window after seeing what boats were selling for. Even a used POS people wanted more than it was worth.
 

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Oh she loves fishing! Been out on the ice with me plenty of times. After having both hips replaced, three back fusions, chronic pain, its hard for her to get out anymore. :cry: I sold my fishing boat (16' aluminum) a few years ago with intensions of buying a 21' cuddy so she could lay down if needed. That all went out the window after seeing what boats were selling for. Even a used POS people wanted more than it was worth.
well that is nice that she likes fishing, my wife hates it!
 

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I've made two trips to the ice this season (Fish Lake). Other than that, I've just fished "soft" water all winter long.


My gear is never "put away". It's all readily available to use weather it is July or January. I just grab my rods and go fishing. :noidea:
 

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I got in an unexpected trip last Saturday and my wife offered again for next week. My wife knows I recharge in the outdoors and wants me energetic to take care of our girl for her 2nd week back at work.

After seeing Johnnycake's post I'm pretty set on getting my little girl on the ice on the 2022/23 season for her 2nd birthday. Worst case is I can duct tape the rod to her arm. Would be tempted for next year but she's tiny as a late preemie and I can't afford to buy a smaller auger.

If/when I get the chance I'll enjoy late ice as much as ice off. It's been stated already but the solitude is great and the action can be fast. The hard deck and upland game are by far what keeps me going during the dog days of summer.
When they are little like that, I usually would put a life jacket on them over their coat. That usually made them too big to fit through the 10" holes so many wishful thinkers in Utah use. My kids were (and are) very petite and up until they were about 4 they could fit through an 8" hole. The life jacket (I can send you a link to the type I like) adds a lot of peace of mind
 

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Ice fishing is a great kid activity. If fishing is slow you simply put them in the sled and pull them around for a bit. They’ll be begging and asking for when they get to go again.
 

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My interest in ice fishing has really waned over the years--I just simply don't find it nearly as much fun. So, yeah....I am looking forward to many places opening up. I can, though, remember many a trip braving ice conditions in the spring...
 
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