Fishing Reports and News

Do you have any outdoor news or fishing/hunting reports?  Send them with photos to iloutdoors@comcast.net.

Here's the latest.

Fox River Shiver Fundraiser with Hermann's Lowlife Bar & Grill by Marcy

Hi, Marcy here! Hope y'all are doing fine, and have been able to get out on the ice plenty of times!
This is not really an ice or fishing report, but a request for donations.
This is the 3rd year in a row that Hermann's will participate in the Fox River Shiver on Sunday, March 1st. This polar plunge benefits the One Small Voice Foundation and Robert & Ann Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago. This foundation funds research and helps Chicago families dealing with Optic Nerve Hypoplasia, which leads to childhood blindness.
The event is held at Broken Oar, and teams raise money and dress up in costumes. It is a crazy fun day!
The first year, our Hermann's team dressed as Duck Dynasty & Chicago Blackhawks. Last year, we did the Olympics. This year's theme is still top secret, but it's a great one, and we have the biggest team yet, 20 people!
Both years, we won trophies for Best Costumes & Most Money Raised as a Team. New this year is a way to donate using Paypal or a credit card online ($10 minimum), thus the email donation request. Please help us defend our trophies and help a great local cause. The link for for donating online is: Hermann's RestAWhile | Hermann's RestAwhile's Fundraiser on CrowdRise. Put "Ice Fishing" in the comment so I know where it came from! Thank you so much.  (See the Photos)

Walk On Water Ice Fishing Benefit Photo

This was on Bangs Lake Walk on Water Charity Event Feb 7  23 Inch Northern Pike on jig and minnow caught by Seth Mahler, VP Arlington Anglers

IDNR Announces 2015 Wingshooting Clinic Schedule - By Chris Young, IL DNR

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR), collaborating with many partners and co-sponsors, will be holding 32 wingshooting clinics at sites throughout Illinois from March through early November this year.  Most clinics are conducted on weekends.

Many of the 2015 wingshooting clinics will be conducted at IDNR sites, while a number will be held at cooperating gun clubs and shooting ranges, hunting preserves, and farms.

Youth/Women’s Wingshooting Clinics are about learning to safely shoot a shotgun at a moving target with reasonable reliability.  Girls and boys typically in the 10-15 age group – and women of all ages – are eligible to participate.  Each youth/women’s clinic starts with a morning shotgun safety presentation, followed by a brief small group hands-on shotgun orientation session with each group’s wingshooting instructor.  After a lunch break, students spend the afternoon in the field shooting flying clay targets on presentations designed for beginning and novice shooters.  Not only do the students learn to safely handle and fire a shotgun, but they learn that being skilled at shooting clay targets is a lot of fun.  Most youth/women’s clinics are provided at no cost to participants.  A few have a nominal - typically $10 - registration fee.  Shotguns, shot shells, and clay targets are provided for shooting students, as is lunch at many clinic sites.

Hunter Wingshooting Clinics are hands-on, and include extensive live fire at a variety of clay target presentations on sporting clays courses specifically designed for teaching typical hunting situations.  From ducks and doves to pheasants, quail and rabbits, hunters will find clay target presentations that resemble their favorite, as well as their most troublesome shots.  Hunter wingshooting clinics consist of two wingshooting sessions each day.

A short briefing about shotgun safety and handling and on-range safety occurs during the first 15 minutes of each four-hour shooting session.  The clinics are designed primarily to improve the wingshooting skills of hunters.  However, these wingshooting clinics are not limited to hunters.  Anyone from 16 years of age on up with beginning to advanced wingshooting skills who wants to improve their shotgun shooting skills can attend.  The fee to participate is either $30 or $35 per participant, depending on the clinic.

Clinics are taught by instructors certified by the IDNR.  Many clinic instructors also have a National Sporting Clays Association (NSCA) instructor certification.  The participant-to-instructor ratio is usually four to one.  Participants are typically grouped with other shooters with similar shooting ability.

There are also a few special wingshooting clinics/activities on the schedule.  The IDNR’s Becoming an Outdoors Woman (BOW) program offers shotgun shooting classes as part of an extensive outdoor skills program.  These classes, taught by IDNR Wingshooting Instructors, are among the most popular classes among BOW participants.  During the National Hunting and Fishing Days activities at Silver Springs State Fish and Wildlife Area in September, the opportunity to shoot flying clay targets is available under the supervision of IDNR Hunter Safety Instructors.  The ‘Healing Outside Of A Hospital’ (HOOAH) program provides sporting clays shooting under the supervision of IDNR Wingshooting Instructors to active duty military personnel recovering from injuries, and disabled veterans.

To view the 2015 IDNR Wingshooting Clinic schedule, and register for a clinic, check the IDNR website at this link:  http://dnr.state.il.us/lands/landmgt/programs/wingshooting/WingshootingDates.htm

 

Frozen Tozen in Boulder Junction by the Boulder Jct. Chamber of Commerce

The 7th Annual Boulder Junction Frozen Tozen Winter Fest, will be held on Saturday, February 21st. Bring family and friends to Boulder Junction for Frozen Tozen featuring an ice fishing tournament on Allequash Lake as well as a 1-mile timed snowshoe race, turkey bowling, shuffle board, warm food and drink, sledding, bonfire and ice-skating at Boulder Junction’s Winter Park. Best of all, these fun activities support community projects. All ice fishing tournament proceeds support the Boulder Junction Boat Landing Improvement Fund and Winter Park activities will benefit, in part, the Community Food Pantry.

Tournament registration begins at 10:00am at the Allequash Lake landing located on Allequash Lake Road off Highway M South, with walk-in registrations welcome throughout the day. The tournament runs from 11am-5pm. At only $20 for adults and $10 for kids 14 and under, the tournament is fun and affordable for everyone. Your individual registration also includes registration in the team tournament. Teams can include 2 – 6 individuals, so bring your friends. Awards will be presented to top anglers and an overall team award.

In it’s 2nd year is the Frozen Tozen Snowshoe Run, a 1-mile snowshoe race around the Winter Park loop. Cost is $20.00 per person or $18.00 with a donation to the Community Food Pantry. Registration includes a t-shirt, bowl of chili and complimentary warm beverages. 1st and 2nd place winners in junior (ages 15 & under), adult (ages 16 to 45) and adult (ages 46 & over) divisions will be awarded. Pre-registration is encouraged, however, walk in registration will take place from 11am to 11:45am. Snowshoes are not provided but can be rented at Coontail in Boulder Junction. The race begins at 12noon, with awards being presented that evening at Headwaters Restaurant & Tavern. Boulder Junction’s Winter Park is 1/4 mile east of Main Street on Old K Road.

Family activities at the Winter Park take place any time between 11am-2pm. Enjoy our wintry take on classic sports. 5 frames of turkey bowling will be featured. A non-perishable donation to the Community Food Pantry is your fee to participate. Prizes will be awarded at Headwaters to both adult and junior bowlers Open ice-skating, shuffleboard, a couple holes of disc golf and sledding will take place all day. Chili, hot dogs and hot beverages will be served and adding to the atmosphere is music with Barb Boston as DJ.

At 5:30pm, join us at Headwaters Restaurant and Tavern on Hwy M, just north of downtown Boulder Junction, for the awards ceremony. In addition to the Frozen Tozen Award for the largest catch of the day, 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards will be presented to individuals with the most total accumulated inches caught throughout the day and the team catching the most total inches will receive the top Team Award.

After the awards, stick around for the raffle drawing! Tickets for the raffle will be available at the Boulder Junction Chamber, Boulder Beer Bar, Gooch’s A-1 Bar & Grill, The Granary Family Restaurant, Headwaters Restaurant & Tavern and Northern Highland Sports. Grand prize is $200.00 in Boulder Bucks. Boulder Bucks are gift certificates that can be used at any Boulder Junction business. Many other prizes, which are donations from local businesses, will also be raffled off. Tickets are just $1.00 each or six for $5.00. As with the tournament proceeds, the raffle will also benefit the Boulder Junction Boat Landing Improvement Fund.

There’s something for everyone at the 7th Annual Boulder Junction Frozen Tozen Winter Fest! We look forward to seeing you on February 21st in Boulder Junction!

The 7th Annual Frozen Tozen is sponsored by:

* Achilles Foot & Ankle Clinic
* Bob’s Manitowish Guide Service
* Boulder Bear Motor Lodge
* Boulder Junction Community Foundation
* Boulder Marine Center
* Coontail
* Dekalb Blower
* FYI Northwoods News
* Island City Lanes
* Gene and Carol Klisnick
* Lake View Lodge
* Lee and Associates
* Moondeer & Friends Gallery
* Peeplelures
* Stormy Kromer

Niagara New York Area Fishing Report by Bill Hilts, Jr.

1.    Lake Ontario and tributaries – Not much open water below Burt Dam on 18 Mile Creek, but it is fishable if you want to brave the elements out there. There is some open water from the dam to the trestle and the best approach is a jig tipped with a wax worm and fished under a float. A straight wax worm or minnow might also work for you, but fish it as slow as you can. It’s cold out there and be careful around the shelf ice. Ice fishing is taking place at both Wilson and Olcott harbors, but it’s not anything crazy good. You have to work for your fish. If you are going to be ice fishing, check out the contest being sponsored by All in the Same Boat in Newfane. They have a contest going on until March 15 so get signed up and start catching! There are two divisions – panfish and pike. Some nice pike were being caught out of Olcott Harbor this past week. It was just announced that the Region 9 State of Lake Ontario meeting will be held in Lockport at Cornell Cooperative Extension Niagara on March 16 starting at 6:30 pm.

2.    Lower Niagara River – Fishing in the lower river has offered up anglers some good to very good trout opportunities, but you have to deal with the weather and ice chunks bobbing through the system. Steelhead is the top catch, but brown trout have turned on and lake trout are still available, too. Joe Bell of Beaver Creek, Ohio was fishing with Capt. Randy Lingenfelter and First Choice Charters last Saturday during the Roger Tobey Memorial Steelhead Contest run by the Niagara River Anglers Association out of Lewiston. While working bait along the Artpark Drift, the lucky angler reeled in a 12.34 pound steelhead to claim the top prize among 61 diehard fishermen competing against each other and the elements. Second place prize went to Ed Waller of Lewiston while fishing with Capt. John DeLorenzo along Fort Niagara. He was using a pink egg sac to take his 11.5 pound fish. After they caught the fish, they had to bust through the ice floes with the boat just to net the fish. Third place went to Capt. Tyler Morrison of Appleton while fishing along the high banks with a Pautzke-cured egg sac. His fish weighed 11.18 pounds. Winner of the special brown trout prize went to Capt. Joe Fonzi of Gasport with a 9.56 pound fish caught on a chartreuse floating jig tipped with a minnow. He was using a three-way rig to get his offering down to the bottom around Fort Niagara area. That same approach produced nine other browns between 4 and 10 pounds. There was also a 12.7 pound brown that came to the scales – but they weren’t in the tournament. Like the state lottery, you have to be in it to win it! Some hardy shore fishermen were casting some jigs, spoons and spinners to take a few trout, but again, conditions are tough. Try a jig tipped with a wax worm and fished under a float, too. Be careful out there! There probably won’t be much fishing going on this weekend with temperatures dipping once again into the single digits.

3.   Upper Niagara River – No change from last week. Some opportunities exist around Grand Island such as Beaver Island State Park at the marina and around the hotel at the foot of Whitehaven Rd. Perch, pike and panfish. There will be an antique tackle show in Lockport on Feb. 28 from 10 am to 2 pm at the Elk’s Lodge, 6791 North Canal Road, Lockport. Call 716-713-9410 for more info.

Bill Hilts, Jr. - Director, Outdoor Promotions
Niagara Tourism & Convention Corporation
www.Niagara-USA.com

Lake of the Woods MN Fishing Report by Joe Henry

Some good reports this week.  Fish are spread out, electronics and focusing on fishing helps the fish bucket.  Good reports between Knight and Bridges islands and Garden Island in 27-33'.  A morning bite reported in 18' off of Pine Island.  Around Zippel, fishing structure in 23 - 30' best with some morning action shallow.  Reefs off of Long Point producing mixed bag with some jumbo perch mixed in.  Combo of walleyes and saugers the norm.  Most groups catching supper each day, many limits and mixed in trophies.

On the Rainy River, frozen shiners in 15-20' with orange or chartreuse is still the go to.  Some sturgeon being caught and released.  Please work through outfitters and bait shops and know where you are going on ice.

Up at the NW Angle good fishing continues around reefs in 23 - 30'.  Jig one line, dead stick second line.  A mixed bag, with more walleyes than saugers.  Some jumbo perch, pike and eelpout mixed in.  Big crappies on the Canadian side continue.  Fish houses on ice through March 31st.  Walleye season open to April 14th.  www.LakeoftheWoodsMN.com/lodging.
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