Ice Fishing Report- With forecasts of unwinter-like temperatures for the two weeks of February, there is likely little chance of significant Put-in-Bay Ice Fishing ice around the islands anymore this winter. And since temperatures trend upward in February, the only hope of any ice on the lake is a severe reversal of the mild winter weather we’ve been experiencing.
With the mild temps, lack of snow and pretty much open water, there are both pros and cons for islanders. The first big pro was the ferry running into January, plus as we go to press, so was the announcement of a ferries beginning to run for a few days weather permitting on Wednesday, February 1st. That’s big savings for transportation, but the con is the airlines have a short season which translates into lost revenue for them. Also suffering is the airboat business. Islanders benefit from lower utility bills, but that means less fuel oil and propane sales for fuel suppliers. Those doing any kind of construction work really benefit from a mild winter. It just makes it easier to get things built when fingers and toes aren’t freezing.
For those who have worked hard all season and then want to relax with a little ice fishing, a winter like this is really a bummer. There are usually scores of ice shanties on the ice around the island. That translates into gasoline sales for the filling station and walleye-filled refrigerators for hungry islanders. We’re thinking the Island General Store benefitted a little with hungry islanders looking for alternative food sources this winter.
Speaking of food, Tipper’s and, now, Miyo and Maria’s new Sand Bar Lounge at Adventure Bay, so far haven’t had any of those great “shot-in-arm” influxes of business when the ice fishing is great and ice fisherman and snowmobilers are making Put-in-Bay a destination. If you are an ice fishing guide or you hoped to provide Put-in-Bay Hotels or Resorts or accommodations for ice fishing, you’re not taking any money to the bank this winter. But then, there’s always next season. So, with all the pros and cons, what kind of winter do you like, an open one or one with ice? We’re guessing you passionately like one or the other and aren’t wishy-washy.