Mikey and Tommy from Michigan with a flurry that included a couple real Lake Simcoe whales. What a kickoff to the 2017 Lake Simcoe icefishing season!
Well, the first ice trip of 2017 is in the books! The boys from Michigan came up and spent 2 solid days catching some of the biggest, prettiest perch available anywhere on earth. Many local operators on lake Simcoe from Beaverton to Virginia are busy hauling shacks out. Ice is still variable in areas, but we also have plenty of ice pushing 10 inches thick. Lots of ATVs and snowmachines out. This report is from January 6th through 8th, 2017. Ice conditions were actually perfect for machine travel.
Travel conditions on Lake Simcoe ice near Virginia Beach were as good as it gets. That will likley change, as it always does. This photo was taken over six inches of hard, black ice with close to four inches of tight, solid white ice on top.
Popping around spoons and swimming jigs is a go-to at first ice. Jumbo perch like big shiners, big gobies and baits that throw around lots of flash. Slab Grabbers and Williams are two great spoon options. We seldom use live bait of any kind. Fish fast and keep those hands dry! Depths of 10 to 14 feet with scattered grass and sand patches are what to look for. No perch or the wrong kind of bottom on the AquaVu means MOVE. Perch is a mobility game. Getting clean fish pics in that bitter windchill with the boys spread out was tough, but we did our best.
Roman with a frozen fish stick. This one clubbed a magnum Slab Grabber. She was frozen pretty good by the time I got over with the camera.
A Slab Grabber (L) and Williams (R). High-flash, metallic spoons seem to be a standard in silvers, golds, copper, etc. Play around with the accent colours and the colours of your beads. The Slab Grabbers have a fixed, hard plastic bead. I change out different soft plastic trout eggs on my Williams. Those small, sticky sharp single hooks nip them every time. Stay aggressive with your pops and jigging stroke. Early perch are mean and will hammer fast baits, fished with a purpose.
Not a great pic, but you get the idea! Mikey, Tommy and Bobby with three Simcoe perch anyone would be happy with. The boys went big that afternoon, jigging the biggest spoons in their boxes. The 'big lure = big fish' theory can be gospel for first ice perch. It works for me more often than not.
Bushey Angle Guided Fishing offers Full-Service, accomodations for MID-WEEK anglers near Port Bolster, right on Lake Simcoe. The cabin is fully winterized, full kitchen, electric heat, classic woodstove, full bathroom facilities, cable TV, wifi service and sleeps up to 8 anglers. You can prepare your own meals in the kitchen or, order-in from a couple local spots close by. It really is the ultimate spot for you to set up shop.
Oh and by the way, the cottage is 1 block from the ice access, right on the perch grounds! You cannot beat that! Price per person, per night is VERY attractive. For groups, this is unbeatable!
Check it out:
Watching the NFC Wild card Weekend games after a day on Lake Simcoe, whacking perch. Life is good! Big area for charging sonars, phones and anything else, to the left of the TV.
Heavy duty clothesline, right in front of the wood stove, in the lounge area. Rustic and ideal for the angler. Check out the old school skin mounts! Every bit of your gear can be hung and dried out like a bone, here. Get up the next morning and hop into head-to-toe comfort. Try doing that at a motel.
Electric heat in the cottage is great, but you have to love the old woodstove and glowing, oak coals. Not a bad spot to take a load off, after a day of perch fishing, if you ask me!
Trout, whitefish and walleye ice is coming along, too. If you want a shot at some great fishing and all the fun that goes with it, I can help you with that! I guide for all of the major winter species.Things are shaping up beautifully on the ice so far. What a time to be alive!