3-11-12 – Champlain Islands

We got an early start on Lake Champlain Sunday morning. The bite started pretty slow and stayed that way until we got sick of having to move around non-stop. We had heard some good reports of rotten ice and big crappies being caught a few bays north and our interests were sparked. We loaded up our gear and headed.

When we got on the ice, there was a SUV driving around and a small sedan parked with its front end in the water. I wish I had taken a picture because it was pretty funny. I guess it was a sight to see when they tried to get on. It was loaded with people and they broke through at the shore. They then decided to leave it where they were stopped by the ice. We figured if the ice can hold at least one car we would be fine for the rest of the day.

We trudged out across the honeycombed ice and talked to a few guys we knew. The reports were that the fishing was slow and not many had been caught since the day before. The strategy for the afternoon was to punch holes in the general area the fish had been and move until we found them. There was no issue with finding fish but unfortunately it was almost impossible to stay away from the shiners. I would have been easy to fill buckets if we had any use for them. You couldn’t drop a jig to the bottom without catching one! The fishing was slow at best for all other species. There weren’t many fish around but you could pull a few when they came through.

Later in the day, we were able to get on a decent spot. We all caught a few pounder crappie to put some meat in the freezer as well as a bunch of bluegill and pumpkinseed before calling it quits. Once the fish moved later in the day, it was apparent that we weren’t going to find them again as we had holes in every direction but it seemed that they went in none. We got off the ice before dark and I’m glad we did. The ice had holes just from melting and you could kick through several inches of melted ice at ease. We all knew that the next day we would fish but not there!

Mark with a good one!

Bobby with a pair

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