We were set up before dark with our spread across a range that covered 17-57 feet of water. Having never tried this before, our best bet was to have a variety of depths covered and zero in if we had enough action. The first hour produced nothing at all so we decided to go chat with a buddy back from where we drove on at.
After a short chat, we made our way back to check things out. Our initial inspection revealed no flags but we knew at times the cusk don’t trip the flags. Many times they will eat the bait and stay put. The first two flags were still baited but had no fish. As we turned around to head to the third, we found that one of our flags on the other side of the spread had sprung.
The flag was deep and yielded a 20″ cusk for us. The rest of the flags were empty but were still baited so afterwards we took a break to let them soak a while longer. During our wait, about 2 hours after dark, our buddy came over to say bye. He was going home fishless but informed us that most of his flags came in about 10 feet of water. We figured that we had nothing to lose so we took a few of the redundant depth flags and moved them in.
With the change in flag locations came a flurry of flags. The bad part was that we couldn’t hook them. As the night progressed, so did the numbers of fish on the ice. We found that most of the cusk came out of deep water. Mainly 45-57 feet and the fish that were firing the flags in shallow were perch. Nice ones too!
Check out Nighttime Cusk Fishing In Vermont on our youtube page for more action!
Notice anything strange?