January 23 – Historians estimate that ice fishing in North America dates back at least 2,000 years when the native inhabitants lived in what is now Canada and the United States invented the …
January 23 – Historians estimate that ice fishing in North America dates back at least 2,000 years when the native inhabitants lived in what is now Canada and the United States invented the practice.
Ice picks were used to open a hole in a frozen lake or river and a wooden decoy on a line was placed in the water. The fishermen would harpoon their catch with a wooden bone-tipped spear.
Ice fishing was created out of necessity as a food source during the winter months- a tradition it remains to this day.
There is nothing better than a trip to Lake Superior State Park. This park has 1,409 lovely untouched acres featuring a lake for swimming and boating as well as a well maintained picnic area, a sand beach, a volleyball court, grills, showers, a playground and a pavilion.
But many don’t know that this little jewel of a state park is open all year round. As proof if needed, this lovely spot hosts an Ice Fishing Derby each year and 2023 is no exception.
The Lake Superior Ice Fishing Derby will be held on Saturday, February 4th starting at 6 am. until 2 pm. The event is hosted by Waterway Outdoors, a fishing and hunting professional guide service.
The Derby has some great cash prizes-$500.-biggest perch, $500.- biggest crappy, $500. -biggest pickerel and special prizes for the participants in the kid’s class. So stay on the “juice” ( juice means a spot that has a lot of fish).
No ATVs or gas augers are allowed and you will need to bring your own fishing bait. You can pre-register using Venmo. The registration fee is $30 for adults and $15 for the kiddos fifteen-years-old or younger.
In-person registration starts at 5 am the day of the Derby. For more information about the Derby or questions about ice conditions the day of the Derby call 845-978-6161.
The second ice fishing event coming up will be sponsored by the Mahogany Ridge Hunting and Fishing Club.
They will be celebrating an age-old fishing tradition and sponsoring their annual Ice Fishing Festival and Contest on Saturday, February 18 at Sand Beach, 348 Lakeview Drive, right on the shores of Highland Lake and the day starts at 7 am.
I have attended this event and it is really a great family day and their Ice Festival also includes a fabulous pig roast!
The Sand Beach Restaurant is well known for having terrific pig roasts so do not be late for this one. The pig roast takes place at the Sand Beach Bar and Restaurant and there is plenty of food and drinks available. They usually set up a tent outside and there is a fire nearby to keep everyone warm.
In addition to fishing, there are contests, raffles with some impressive prizes and activities for all ages. Weigh In is between 2-3 pm and the pig roast starts at 1pm. No gas machines or ATV are allowed.
Tickets for the event are only sold at the door and are $25 per person and $15 for kids under twelve-years-old and each fisherman gets one dozen free minnows.
If the ice conditions are not suitable for fishing, the day’s activities will still take place. For the Ice Fishing Festival and Contest there will be plenty of time for the kiddos to run around and several family focused activities happen throughout the day.
For more information go to the Mahogany Ridge Hunting and Fishing Facebook page. Or call the Sand Beach Restaurant at 845-557-8757.
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