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How deep under the ice?

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  • How deep under the ice?

    I have been fishing several lakes with 25' or so of water under the ice. We have been fishing close to the bottom, but lately have not been bringing any fish up. Wondering if our cold snap last week and the additional snow changed things.
    Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

  • #2
    Originally posted by SmokeRoss View Post
    I have been fishing several lakes with 25' or so of water under the ice. We have been fishing close to the bottom, but lately have not been bringing any fish up. Wondering if our cold snap last week and the additional snow changed things.
    Look for structure. We always start with a bathymetric map of the lake. We look for sever drop-offs, then go to that spot and start drilling holes, and checking depth till we find the spot that we see on the map. Fishing the right place in the lake is a lot more important than the depth. The depth is easy to figure out once you find the right place.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by mark knapp View Post

      Look for structure. We always start with a bathymetric map of the lake. We look for sever drop-offs, then go to that spot and start drilling holes, and checking depth till we find the spot that we see on the map. Fishing the right place in the lake is a lot more important than the depth. The depth is easy to figure out once you find the right place.
      Most of the lakes we have been fishing are basically bowls.
      Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

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      • #4
        I always start with one line a few inches off the bottom, second line about a foot. If nothing hits in half an hour raise the bottom one up to 18". Keep going as needed. Sometimes I have found the fish just below the ice. I believe much depends on available oxygen and the food sources in the lake.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by SmokeRoss View Post

          Most of the lakes we have been fishing are basically bowls.
          Then you look for the "Most" structure plus what Dave said. I almost never find fish in the deepest part of the lake. Certainly not rainbows. Sometimes char or burbot are in the deepest part. Do you use a fish finder? If you have a bowl try inside the tightest end, or a point.

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          • #6
            What species are you fishing for? Makes a big difference.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Bushwhack Jack View Post
              What species are you fishing for? Makes a big difference.
              He's a rainbow guy.

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              • #8
                Sounds like there is a dissolved oxygen problem. This time of year the dissolved oxygen can really drop in some lakes. Smaller lakes can have winterkill due to extremely low D.O. In a large lake I fish frequently, the D.O. plummets at 23 ft. this time of year. In smaller lakes, the D.O. can crash as shallow as 5 feet. In the winter, the water is warmer as you go deeper, assuming there is no lake turnover. Warmer water holds less oxygen. The water is coldest at the surface where ice is forming and holds more oxygen. I would fish closer to the surface.

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                • #9
                  Yeah I agree with thymallus that rainbows become pretty lethargic this time of year. Starts to pick up again in mid-March usually. Mark fishes for rainbows a whole lot more than I do, but when I used to fish for them a lot I typically never fished more than about 10-15 feet of water and most of the time I would only fish in about 5-10 feet of water. They are not a really deep water fish in my opinion. The like to hang out by the vegetation close to shoreline. More oxygen and food available there. Close to the littoral zone you got dissolved oxygen from plants and food such as amphipods (scuds), mollusks (snails), leeches, sticklebacks etc. to feed on. Out in the deep (hypolimnion or profundal zone) there is less light, less oxygen, less food etc.

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                  • #10
                    I have caught Rainbows right under the ice on occasion. I usually try the bottom first , but if no luck start at top and work your way down.

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                    • #11
                      I usually target 6-12 feet of water with a goal of 8-10.<br/>But rarely over 12-14 feet.<br/>I too start at the bottom but adjust as the fish show up on my flasher.<br/>Sometimes I'm surprised as I'm catching off the bottom then a big one shows up on the screen just under the ice or halfway up.<br/>Often I can just feel up and catch them.<br/>The flasher is so nice to have!<br/><br/>Sent from my S60 using Tapatalk<br/><br/>
                      "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

                      "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

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                      • #12
                        The weed line is structure. Fishing the edge of the weed line is deadly, especially in a an otherwise structureless lake. In our lakes it happens to be at about 10 to 12 feet.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by mark knapp View Post
                          The weed line is structure. Fishing the edge of the weed line is deadly, especially in a an otherwise structureless lake. In our lakes it happens to be at about 10 to 12 feet.
                          Yes I've caught well over a hundred fish in one day doing exactly this.<br/>A group 50' away caught 6 fish for 5 people in the same timeframe.<br/>They had the wrong depth and location.<br/>But my electronics put me on the fish!<br/><br/>Sent from my S60 using Tapatalk<br/><br/>
                          "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

                          "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by kasilofchrisn View Post
                            Yes I've caught well over a hundred fish in one day doing exactly this.<br/>A group 50' away caught 6 fish for 5 people in the same timeframe.<br/>They had the wrong depth and location.<br/>But my electronics put me on the fish!<br/><br/>Sent from my S60 using Tapatalk<br/><br/>
                            Yep. me too.

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