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  1. On Frozen Pond....A tale of heartbreak and triumph. It had been too long for these two to get out fishing. Perhaps they have drifted apart, but that wasn't the case. Life got in the way and months had passed before they realized they hadn't wet a line. That was all to change... ....the players - Fishnsled and ccmt ....the location - Lake Simcoe ....the time - Saturday March 9th and Sunday March 10th ....the equipment - Ice fishing rods, lures, minnows, snowmobile This story starts out years ago on this big lake. Ccmt has only ever caught perch on this lake despite Fishnsled's repeated efforts to get him onto a whitefish or a lake trout....two species ccmt has never caught through the ice. This would be the 7th or 8th time he tried in vain to get him onto some bigger fish. Saturday at 530am, Fishnsled picks up ccmt...and they began their trek north to Lake Simcoe. They debated all the way up about getting minnows or not. They decided not to get any...was this a critical mistake? That's to be seen. A quick stop at Tim Hortons close to the lake and they headed to the ice. The conditions are incredibly foggy, a little above freezing, and quite comfortable. Fishnsled gets his snowmobile off the trailer...they hook up the sled with all the gear and off they went. The first spot is a few miles off shore...in about 85 feet of water. A quick jump over the pressure crack and they were close to their spot. They arrive at the first GPS location and unload the gear. Fishnsled gets busy and begins drilling some holes. The game is on. They each put a jigging spoon on and begin to try for the elusive whitefish or lake trout. Each spot was equipped with a fish finder to see what was going on under the ice. Fish came and went quite regularly, but there were no takers. After a few hours of watching fish pass by the spoons, they hop back on the sled and head to GPS location number two. Same story different location. They both talk about how they wish they got minnows, so they could set up a few other rods as they jigged. Maybe the spoons weren't working because the fish wanted live bait! It was quite surreal out there in the fog. You could only see maybe a hundred yards all around. It literally felt like they were in the arctic tundra...isolated from the entire world.... Anyways, a few hours of that and no fish, and they set off for location number 3. They chatted back and forth about those darned minnows...but they didn't have any for this day. Location number 3 was much the same. Saw fish on the fishfinders, but no takers. That is until ccmt raises his rod as he's jigging. Wait...there is weight!! He sets the hook and the battle is on!! Fishnsled hears the drag peeling and looks over. He scrambles and gets his camera...he wants to capture this magic moment on video!! He gets the camera and starts jogging over and then as quickly as the fight started...it ended. Ccmt crumples on the ice mumbling "no no no no no no no no....why me?" After calming himself down, they jig for a little while longer. The fog begins to lift and the sun comes out. They continue until 5pm...both exhausted and ready to head home. They pack up and load the sled and off they go. They approach the main pressure crack and as they get right up to it, they see some open water on the other side. Fishnsled guns the sled and off they go...flying high over the wet stuff. When they land, they check the sled they were towing and all was ok! (BTW...there was only a little bit of water there....some details may be embelleshed). They call it a day...dejected about no fish...and the decision to not get minnows..... Sunday March 10th The anglers decide to give it one more kick at the can. After several years of ccmt not getting a single whitie or laker, it was his last chance of the year.... They make the same trip north...stopped at the same Tim's for coffee and arrive at the lake...this time with a scoop of minnows! The plan today was to jig spoons and have a few rods set up with live bait just off bottom. We'd for sure catch fish today!! The guy who sold the minnows said that it's been pretty slow all season for whities, but that they seem to prefer the live bait. This time they head to a new spot...in 65 feet of water...who knows, maybe they are actively feeding a little shallower? After an hour of trying out that spot and only seeing one or two fish come through the area, they decide to head off to a spot they were at yesterday. Today is a much nicer day...no fog...nice and mild. They find the same spot they jigged at yesterday and put minnows down just off bottom and they begin jigging a small distance from them. Ccmt is glued to the fish finder....and every once in a while a fish would take interest...chase the spoon and then meander off. For sure those minnows would produce though!! Ccmt is watching his screen...and there is nothing there. He's jigging up and down...and suddenly there is dead weight on the line. He excitedly sets the hook...looks at the screen and all !#% breaks loose! The fish finder screen suddenly bursts to life and the fight is on. Fishnsled gets his camera for round two, as ccmt slowly but surely begins to bring the fish up. He asks if it feels like it has some size and ccmt replies "nope...but I don't really care...it's not fighting..must be small". When the fish is about 10 feet away, it goes breserk...and the real fight is on! He looks down the hole in the ice and sees the unmistakable marks of a Simcoe Lake Trout! now the adrenaline is pumping...he's determined not to lose this fish. A few minutes later, the fish seems ready to come out...fishnsled reaches in and pulls it out onto the ice! Ccmt pumps his fists in the air and yells "WOOOHOO!!". Four years, multiple trips and he FINALLY has his "non perch" fish from this lake!!! After that fish, it seems to quiet down a bit so they decide to have a bit of lunch and then head to a new spot. Having the snowmobile is a must...anyone that knows ccmt knows he's lazy LOL. On the ride to the new spot, they spot what seems to be a sea gull on the ice. As they get closer, they see the head is wayy to big for a seagull...it's in fact a majestic snowy owl!! It takes off before either one of us can snap a picture...but it was very cool to see! Anyhow, they set up shop at a new spot and begin setting up. A little while later...as they are discussing that the minnows surely has to start producing soon, ccmt's minnow rod seems pretty active. Surely the tiny minnow on the hook cannot be causing the rod to dance that much. He picks up the rod and sets the hook. He feels nothing...then suddenly a little tug again! He sets the hook again...nothing! He decides to reel in to check his minnow. As it gets closer to the hole, there is a sudden hard strike!!! He sets the hook again...adrenaline is pumping. The bend in the rod is huge!! Then fishnsled says "You caught my jigging spoon" That was all the action for the day. At 4pm, they decide to pack it up. By that time, the warm temps and direct sunshine had pretty much melted all the snow off the ice. They quickly loaded up all the gear and they were on the road. On the ride back the topic of minnows came up again...they decided that the answer is simple. There was only one fish in the lake and ccmt caught it LOL. PS. I have no idea why I wrote this in the third person.....Oh yeah. If you need a guide for lakers and whitefish, I recommend fishnsled....as long as you don't mind it taking 4 years to get you on fish....LOL
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