Bait Shops Provide Ice Condition Update For Area Lakes

DULUTH, Minn. – “People are getting them. You just can’t go wherever you want right now,” Marine General Sales Manager, Rob Hering says.

With the higher than average temperatures for this time of year, ice fisherman have to be cautious before dropping a line.

“You can get out there, but you’re not pulling a truck or pulling your crank down,” Hering says.

Most area bait shops are still seeing steady traffic this season, mainly because the warm weekends are bringing in the crowds.

“Last two weekends it was just absolutely crazy in here because it was really nice weather and people wanted to go sit out on the ice,” Hering says.

Quite a few resorts have also been benefitting from the warmer weather which has made it more comfortable for outdoor activities.

“We’ve been really busy this past weekend with fishermen being able to get out on the lake and enjoy the outdoors,” Hi-Banks Resort Owner, Kim Wagner says,

But the amount of snow and slush still visible on the lakes is definitely making things harder for some fishermen.

Several smaller inland lakes are not driveable because of thinner than normal ice.

“It takes a little more effort and you need some snowmobiles. Definitely the best tool to have to get ice fishing right now,” Chalstrom’s Bait & Tackle Owner, John Chalstrom says.

Resort owners expect the busiest part of the ice fishing season to last until the end of February, but have a simple message for anyone ready to get out on the ice.

“With the iffy lake conditions not to just leave their houses. To make sure they are tending to the houses often. To make sure that if there was ever a change in the weather conditions that they get the houses off as soon as possible,” Wagner says.

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