Sunday, December 27, 2015

South Dakota Perch

With no ice in Iowa and Christmas break looming, I just had to go fishing!  A friend and I decided to travel to the Brookings, South Dakota area to find some safe ice.  Kirk Moe, of ProMoe Outdoors assured me that ice would be available and a pretty good perch bite was just starting.  If you are looking for a trip to Eastern South Dakota make a stop to his website and he will provide a great trip for you and your ice fishing party.
We found a lake that had 4-5 inches of ice and we were delighted to walking on water once again.  With minimum tackle, the K-Drill and a one-man shack we made the walk to a large mud flat.  It took us awhile to locate the perch, but once we did they were eating our spoons and minnows very aggressively.  The key in the morning hours was to move the spoon/minnow very erratically to call the perch into your area.  It was a fun bite, but the perch were on the move that morning, so drilling out different areas was necessary to stay on the fish.  After the noon hour, the perch wanted the spoons, but a lot less movement, too much and they would disappear from the Vexilar not to be seen a gain.  Once again, I cannot say enough about the K-Drill and its power.  However, the best thing that I think sells the K-Drill is how much weight it saves on the ice.  It is like you don't even have an auger with you.  It you haven't had the chance to take a look at one, track me down this winter, or ask someone on the ice that has one.  They are amazing.
The perch were jumping around that day, so we did too.  Popping holes, checking for fish activity with the Vexilar FLX-28's kept us on track with them all day.  It was a long trip, but the good company and fish stories made my first ever trip to South Dakota well worth it.  Hopefully, many more ice fishing reports will follow this one...from IOWA! Be safe out there and ALWAYS take a rope, flotation device, picks, and a friend.

Monday, December 21, 2015

What we see with a VEXILAR

I have had the opportunity to speak to hundreds of people around Iowa this fall/winter about the upcoming ice fishing season.  Although many of us wonder if it will ever happen...soon my fishing friends...soon.  While speaking at a couple different seminars and doing a couple more in-store promotions one of the biggest things I try to help people with is understanding what their Vexilar is telling them.
Your Vexilar is telling you A LOT, how an angler takes all that information and processes it is up to the user.  One thing that really gets the attention of a crowd at a seminar or when speaking to a Vexilar owner is the amount of water your transducer is actually reading.  To be real honest, it isn't that much, with any transducer ever made, on ice or open water.  We as anglers want to believe that electronics are showing us the underwater world with vast readouts, but that is not really happening.  Knowing the facts will, and should open your eyes to what you are really seeing when using your Vexilar on the ice.

~ Cone angle gives you your underwater picture
~ 9-degree, 12-degree, 19-degree, 20-degree will all give a different picture down the same hole
~ The Pro-View transducer begins at 9-degrees and can expand up to 40-degrees
~ The type of transducer you own is imprinted at the top of your transducer
~ The graphic below shows us exactly what we see

This chart shows us the diameter (in feet) of the "circle" of lake floor that the ice-ducer is showing us.  If you are targeting a specific pieces of cover, rocks, brush etc, you must drill...drill...drill.
I hope you have learned a few things while we await for good ice.  Stay safe out there and always take a friend, picks, rope and flotation device during early ice.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Reading your Vexilar

The past few weeks I have had the opportunity to present at two different Ice Fishing Seminars representing Vexilar.  At these two events I presented to about 150 anxious ice anglers trying to gather as much information as they could to help them land a few extra fish this upcoming ice fishing season.  A live seminar is a great way to learn some tips but I will try to pass along a few tips in the the next couple of weeks that seemed to be the biggest help to the audience.


As ice anglers we choose to use electronics to help us tell us many things.  In this illustration we can see a Vexilar read-out with the bottom being at about 12 feet.  We also see that our jig is at the 10 foot level in the water column.  The part that is the most important is the green line showing us a fish is below us.  Remember, green and yellow lines are signals that are away from the center of the signal from the Vexilar.  So, the fish signal shows up at about 11 feet of water, but as we can see in the picture the fish is actually swimming at 10 feet.  This illustration shows/reminds us that we always need to fish above any green or yellow mark on the Vexilar.  If you need more information about this picture or tip, just drop me an email, or come to the Cedar Falls Scheels store this Saturday and we can talk all about Vexilars and ice fishing.  (10am-3pm)

Picture Credits:

Sunday, December 6, 2015

The Beginning of the Ice season

December normally marks the beginning of the ice fishing season here in Iowa, however this year the weather has not been cooperative. The past week and next week we will see many 40 and 50 degree day time temperatures here in Iowa.  This will obviously push the ice season back even farther into December.
During this time of year ice anglers are always chomping at the bit to find safe ice and try their luck for the first time of the year.  Anglers are also getting gear ready and stocking up on new ice fishing supplies and gadgets.  I had the chance to join several hundred anglers at Hank's Bait and Tackle in Waterloo this past week for their annual ice fishing open house.  This tackle shop is "the" mega-tackle shop for ice anglers.  If you want it, they have it!  Shacks, augers, jigs, plastics, electronics, rods/reels and a full line of Vexilar flashers.  Do yourself a favor and check them out for your ice fishing needs.
During this ice fishing open house, I had the opportunity to present a seminar on using your flasher while ice fishing.  I gave the audience many tips and tricks they can use with their flasher to help them catch more fish this winter.  I really enjoy helping others understand their flasher so that they can use it to their full potential.  I enjoyed it, and I know many of the audience members did too.  If you have any questions about the functions of your Vexilar or have a question please contact me by email so I can be of assistance to you.
Here's to good safe ice, and hopefully soon...all I really want for Christmas is 5 inches of safe ice!