Last day of the ice fishing season, I had to get out for one more shot at the grandmother of all trophy pikes. I headed to the south shore of Lac St Louis near Chateauguay, we set up 20 lines with a variety of dead bait and live shiners, covering water depths from 3 to 10 feet. The ice was still close to 2 feet think, the massive hovercraft was already making it’s rounds breaking up the ice in the main river channel. The bite was extremely slow all morning. Around noon, the first flag of the day was tripped, but the fish didn’t take the bait. A couple minutes later, my bait feeder reel tipped with 2 live shiners started clicking, I engaged it and hooked into a decent pike. It peeled some drag a couple times, I brought it in and live released it as the water in that area has and advisory for pike over 2 feet, this one was a few inches over, probably 28 or 29 inches or so.
My buddy shot some footage of the release, you can view it by clicking:
This is the first decent fish I’ve brought in on a rod and reel through the ice, the fight is not comparable to a standard tip up or hand line. I’m re-thinking my strategy for next ice fishing season, as catching them on rod and reel is way better. I have some spare reels, I’ll most likely pick up a lot of ice fishing rods online, possibly tip the lines with bite alarms to hear them going off when the pike take off with the bait.