Monday, January 12, 2009

Don’t Ice Fish in Short Pants

Wearing short pants has nothing to do with your ability to ice fish, it’s just very annoying and uncomfortable. I don’t own snow pants of my own, so I borrowed them from a friend. Sometimes I forget that my legs were meant for a six-foot-seven star basketball player and were accidentally placed on me. So aside from only catching a fish the size of a toothpick, I also waddled across the ice in short pants and a pink hat, being referred to as an Oompa Loompa by my sister’s fiancé.

Since this blog isn’t about fashion, I should probably talk about how my ice fishing experience went.

Not well… but are you really surprised?

It was a family fishing adventure. We chose to fish a section of North Sandy Pond near the Elm's Golf Course. It was my dad, mom, sister, sister’s fiancé, sister’s fiance’s dad and me, with my dog in tow.

We set up shop past all of the other ice fishermen, hoping we would find the “big” fish. Josh (my sister’s fiancé) had a field day with his auger and before we knew it, there were enough holes in the ice to play connect-the-dots.

I spent the first half an hour trying to control my 70 lb. dog. Normally my half springer spaniel, half lab mix named Samwise is about as energetic as a dead snail. Apparently the combination of ice, snow and people sitting on buckets gave him motivation to move; pretty quickly I might add. He also took a liking to chasing birds that he has no means of ever catching. Yet, when I throw a dead duck two feet in front of him (in hopes of training him to be a good hunting dog), he shows no interest and instead decides it’s a good time and place for a nap. Man’s best friend indeed.

After pawning Samwise off to my mom, I brought the camera over to where my dad was fishing. With his trusty old rod in hand, my dad began to add the bait, “Spikes” as he called them. “What are Spikes?” I wondered, imagining some cool colorful sparkly thing. If you have ever ice fished before, I’m sure you know what Spikes actually are, and I’m sure you guessed my reaction when I discovered the truth.

MAGGOTS! (insert horror movie music here)

All adventurous rugged women are allowed to have their weaknesses. Mine happens to be maggots. I started doing the “girl” thing and acted grossed out and refused to touch them. My sister, who I like to refer to as Davy Crockett, because she thinks she is the ultra outdoors sportswoman and likes to embarrass me any chance she gets, began to argue with me and tell me that they are in fact spikes, and not maggots.

Well excuse me. Just because they are CALLED spikes, doesn’t mean they aren’t disgusting little white worms known to the rest of the sane world as maggots.

I let my little tantrum pass and I waited anxiously for my dad to get his first catch. It didn’t take long for the fish to bite. I video taped all of the action for you to see. Watch the video below. It starts off slow in the beginning but it picks up around the 26 second mark.

Note: You may need a magnifying glass.

I took statistics in college. The odds that I could catch a bigger fish than my dad’s wimpy little thing seemed pretty good. More than pretty good, they seemed just about absolute.

Did I mention I was terrible at statistics?

Check out the size of my monster below:

Note: Please ignore the short pants.

I think I caught a minnow that escaped from someone who was Pike fishing across the pond.

I continued to fish and surprisingly I got a bite about every five minutes, not surprisingly I could never keep one of those fish on the line. My sister sat next to me the whole time, and when she wasn’t talking on her cell phone, she was laughing at me.

Note: My sister claims to be the ultra outdoor sportswoman, yet I have not seen her pick up fishing pole to date, as evidenced by this blog and a previous fly fishing blog.

I spent the rest of the afternoon walking around and taking photos, positive that since I wasn’t catching anything big, then surely nobody else would be either. Wrong again. My sister’s future father-in-law caught a couple of nice-sized perch, and then to add insult to injury, a young boy nearby caught bigger perch than all of us.

Ron, my sister's future father-in-law, showing off his perch.
The little kid who made all of us look bad.

My sister posing with Josh... and not fishing.

My dad and mom fishing while my sister talks on the phone.

Josh waiting for a bite

Sam doing what he does best... nothing.

Waiting for another bite

My sister playing with Sam and still not fishing

Ron enjoying the sun (while my sister runs around with Sam in the background... STILL not fishing)