Jan 8th 2016

This crazy lake? Don, Nate and forgot the other guys name just headed home and they did not do well at all. I guess I landed on a fishless spot. Marty again had great action the night before so I saw no reason to think it could shut down that quick. Being a guide has its draw backs some times. I guess its fishing and thats the way it is. Tom and his crew in the cabin headed out 4 miles on there wheelers and too the north. The fishing was not fast and furious as they came in short spurts though out the day. They did manage to get there 9 plus 4 yes 4 elusive upper red lake crappies. Gotta love that north shore, being mobil also helps alot.
Stopped to check in on Kevin, Jake and Alex in old minnesota and they had just finished a freash walleye dinner. Kevin asked if I wanted to play a game of cribbage 4 handed. We played cut throat and 19. I had never heard of 19, if you get a zero hand you go back 19 pegs. Lets just say Alex and I did not do well and that zero did not help. While sitting there I did miss one fish on a chubby darter on Kevins line. I then had two follows while playing cards. Don and his crew were at westwind so I stopped to check in on Marty before calling it a night. I was only there a few minutes and landed a nice 16 on Marty’s rattle wheelset up. Plain red hook with a small buckshot is all he has been fishing since he arrived tuesday morning. He does not use a vexlar.
Its just about time to hit the lake. Renting a house on wednesday thursday has its drawbacks as now Marty and I have to move florida . Its no big deal as we have a great system and takes us less then a hour, not including prepping the trail and area we move to.

Jan 7th 2016

Yesterday was a beautiful day to work on the lake. Brian and his crew were all ready gone when I left so I did not get to say goodbye. I know they did go home with there 12 so that was sweet. Marty had his 3 for the trip home on Friday. Sounds like the best bite has ben 1am tell 4 am. Good there in sleepers to be there for the action. Marty and I moved Florida for Don and his crew that were rolling in around 6 30 pm. We then got Old Minnesota out of its perch and moved to its new location. North Carolina was also put on a new location ready for Friday. Dennis and Shelly in the cabin, with the wilcraft went home skunked. I was way surprised. They never fished much after dark and never landed on them during the day. I still have not been able to hook up with Buddy Hillmen from Hillmens. Marty and I headed out his road to measure some ice thickness a mile out where I had good fishing last year. The first hole we augured north of the main road measured just a tad over 11 inches. Rats as I am looking for 14 for the houses. The second place we augured gave us 12 a little closer to shore. The third was just over 12. I guess that pretty much tells me where I’m not going at this time. Westwind has opened there road to some traffic but you will have to check there web site to see what there allowing at this time. Today Marty and I have to find a spot for North Dakota on at least 14 inches of ice for Andy and his crew. I’m sure he is pumped as he always is. He is a big time musky fishermen and will be interesting to see what his biggest was this last year. He has always liked the charm and lighting of Montana and will see if North Dakota lives up to his approval . I think he is going to like it.

Jan. 6th 2016

yesterday was a very productive day for Marty and I. We started off getting a few little things done around here before we hit the lake. Brian and his crew had 8 fish laying on the ice and looked like they were sleeping in. Sounds like another night of rattle wheels keeping them up. Are first move was to dig North dakota out of its perch, I had turned the heat off and was not quite sure how it would move as it is our newest and biggest edition. Every thing went well and she sitting on the ice wating to be moved to its next location. I then was able tocheck in with Brian and his crew and just as expected the rattle wheels were the culprits of every one sleeping in. The next move was montana and that went smooth also ,following that north carolina our two man day house/sleeper was pulled out of its perch and is also waiting for its new spot. Marty spent the night in montana so we will see how he did over night as well as Brian and his crew. Old minnesota will be moved today as well as florida. If the weather men are right it should be a beautiful couple days working on the lake with snow flurries and light winds before the big cold snap hits saturday

Jan. 5th 2016

Its been interesting to see how each resort and outfitter has been able to improvise a solution to the ice conditions this year to get customers and houses onto the lake. I would guess and this is a guess that were average 11 inches of ice. Marty and I will be scouting some new areas and measuring ice thickness at each hole we augur . I have a board with a lip on the bottom that catches the bottom of the ice and has a tape attached to it so its dead on. No guessing. I like to see at least 14 inch for my houses. I have had them on 12 but prefer 14.
Yesterday I did get too say good bye to Rick, Matt and Mike . They had planned to leave early but the rattle wheels kept them up half the night. That’s a good thing to here.
Moving florida went real well and I had her moved, banked and augured in less then a hour. Brian and his crew Patty Josh and Jake rolled in around noon and I was able to escort them out to the house and get them set up. Then it was off to Bemidji to purchase a new addition to the operation. No more lugging them 2500 generators around. Thinking back, wow did they see some harsh condition out there over the last 10 years. Money well spent. I did have a little surprise last night when I went to the station to gas the new 2000 up. For some goofy reason the have a bigger cap and a smaller filler tube, Ridicules, I will get a better look at it today to see if it can be modified a bit . Marty was rolling in late and would be using when he arrived.
Checked On Brian and the crew ,they went to westwind for dinner and were playing some cribbage. They had a few on the ice ,Brian said they started biting around 4. They had also missed some fish so that’s some more good news.
Dennis and his wife were out in the wilcraft and did not fair to well. They did go out quite a ways out and Dennis said the ice was about this thick and held up his hands. I had ask him if he would measure the ice where ever he augured, too funny. Marty and I will be shuffling all the houses today and making our plans for the up and coming weekend. Thanks to all that have came up so far this year. Its been a great start to the season in my book on such a grand lake.

jan 4th 2016

Got a great pic of Cory and his family yesterday with there 13 walleye and one eel pout. They enjoyed them self and Cory said maybe he will come back in march and chase a few crappies with us. Pat and Mike spent the night in North Carolina after fishing outside all day. They did have some action and went home with there 6. Travis and Christy spent one night in montana and had a few in the bucket.. When I stopped last night to check on Rick, Matt and Mike in Minnesota they were doing up some fish and had 3 in the bucket so they were getting more action the third night. They were taking off early this morning so I will never know how they did over night. Rick comes back in a few weeks for a couple more nights. I prepped all the houses yesterday for there next move which looks like will be more of the cookie shuffle at this time with the ice conditions the way they are. I’m in a fishy area for now with a solid 14 inches of ice under each house. I put off moving Florida un tell this morning so will be heading out in a bit to get that done before Brian and his crew arrive. I thought it would be fun to try and keep track of how many holes I punch this year and after today I will be up to 53 after I prep florida. All the houses were blocked up before we augured them as with only 14 inches office they do flood. The water seeps out from underneath the house and slowly freezes making it a little nasty for walking and working around the house. It also absorbs into the banking and there will be some ice chipping going on this morning. I should be able to have florida moved in less then a hour depending on how much chipping there is. I’m hoping its not to much as we have 4 more houses to move this week.

As of now Hillmens road is still closed to vehicle’s. wheelers, side by side and sleds towing wheel houses are allowed. If you saw vehicles running his road this weekend they were accessing the lake some where else then jumping onto buddies road

jan 3rd 2016

Tim and Jake hit the same spot they went to the day before. They still had decent fishing but only landed 19 for the day. Jake has some work at home to get done so they are taking off a day earlier then planned. My good friend Wayne and I played a little cards with them last night. Jake was the big winner and I told him next time I would be bringing the ringer my sweety ,Kellie the Hammer.
When I went to check on every one last night and top off the generators every one was bedded down or had the lights low so I did not find out how any of them did. Cory text this morning to give me a heads up the generator had quit for the second time this weekend. Turns out she is worn out and going through some oil. Last year the other 2500 generators charging system went out so it looks like Marty and I will be making two generators into one. She had a good life and both lasted 8 to 10 years respectively. I will be purchasing a used or new eu 2000 this week. Any one out there with a good used eu 2000 for sale give me a shout. Today after saying good bye to Cory and his family I will be moving Florida on to fresh ice for Brian and his crew tomorrow. Should be interesting out there today watching all the wheel leave the lake being towed by wheelers.

happy new years

Well we’ve been busy the last couple days. Marty rolled in late Monday night with his young neighbor Dylan in tow. I had a list of things we needed done before we pulled the houses onto the lake for the up and coming season. I did have a few fishermen here and with there portables in tow they all seemed to find a few fish. Andy and his crew camped with there ice castle on the river and enjoyed the peace and quiet. Kyle and his crew were in the cabin. I set two of them up to fish north Carolina but they never did make it out there. Yesterday was the big moving day as we broke all the houses loose and headed on to the lake. Do to the ice condition this year I had no choice but to start out in front of my place just off the last break in 8 to 9 feet of water. There should be no reason we will not catch fish there with most coming after dark. I augured a few test holes and found 13 inch of ice close to shore. I then started walking to the west auguring holes every 25 steps. Checking the ice with a tape measure I was a little disappointed to find 11 inches not 50 feet from 13 inches . The next 6 holes all showed 10 inches. We are just not having the super cold weather that makes ice. Every year is different and this year is no exception. Last year we were driving 6 miles out at this time with well over 20 inches of ice. Right now as it stands I will have to stick it out close to shore un tell the ice conditions improve .When the time is right I will head north and get all the houses on to buddy hillmens road. The lake has been a very busy place the last couple days as all the outfitters and resorts are trying to get houses out to fishable waters. Last I heard Hillmens would only be allowing 16 foot and under ice houses on to the lake towed by wheelers and side by sides. I have no idea what westwind is allowing at this time. Eva and Matt will be fishing our new house North Dakota starting today. They are here for two days and then the house is open Saturday. They will be the first to land a fish in our newest addition. I had Marty and Dylan in montana last night so will see how they did later this morning . Rick and his crew roll in for Minnesota Friday, Cory and his family also arrive for florida. Mitch cancelled montana and Travis and his wife will be using it Friday night. Pat will be bedding down in north carolina Saturday eve. Its nice to be on the lake . She’s a grand lake and as David the old timer up here told me its a grand lake and it owes us nothing.

The excitement is building as were just a couple days a way from getting the houses out of the woods and on to the lake. I spent a little time yesterday plowing out on to the lake to prepare for the move. I have some more plowing to do today as blue thunder is starting to get a good workout. Marty will be up later today and be helping me prep the houses for the move.
Jake and Rory finally found better fishing and said they really turned on at 3 pm yesterday. Blong, chang, natila a shang did not have very good fishing. They never did walk out in front of my place and were a little worn out from all the walking and dragging out there equipment onto the lake. It sounds like they will be back in a couple weeks when they can drive onto the lake. There were not quite as many fishermen on the lake yesterday but there were quite a few. I have Andy and his crew camping on the river lot starting today and Kyle and his crew coming for the cabin later today. Buddy Hillmens road is in great shape just like every other year. I be leave he is asking fishermen to stay with in 2 miles of shore at this time as a crack came across his road Christmas eve.

dec 27th

Good morning to all. Just enjoying the morning watching in depth outdoors. There fishing oak island and I was digging the air boat they used to get on safe ice.
Here on the northeast end of the lake saw a lot of traffic yesterday. I figure there were about 300 portable and wheel houses within view. Fired up the heat in montana yesterday and the ceiling fan stopped working so that will need to be addressed today. We made it to 6 below this morning so I imagine we have gained a inch in the last 24 hours.
Jake and his buddy had slow fishing yesterday. They moved 4 times through out the day. They did manage to get there limit but they had to work for them. The guys in the cabin were going to walk off our property but must of came up with a plan b as there trucks were gone all day and they were not down at the lake. At this time it looks promising to take the houses out of the woods and on to the lake Wednesday. I will be starting the season close to shore and expect good fishing so time will tell.

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dec.18th 2015

good morning to all. Talked to Budddy Hillmen yesterday around 10 am. He did not agree with me as I figured we would gain 2 inches of ice by sunday evening. He said with the snow cover and ice he highly doubted we will make that much ice. He then headed out to start dragging his super highway a mile out with his Dakota pickup. His mechanic Kelly ask if I wanted to open the next mile of road with blue thunder. I told them I did not have the kahunas to do it. Mother nature reared her ugly side yesterday and I was thank full the houses are still tucked in the woods as it was white out conditions. If the houses were on the lake they would of had some major drifts around them.
The guys in the cabin headed out around 1pm yesterday and that had to be a wicked walk out of westwinds straight into those west winds howling to beat the band. I can just imagine how tough it had to be to put up a portable. I spent a hour plowing down at the lake to keep it open when the time comes to get the houses out of the woods. I have a couple wheel houses camping down there this weekend also. I will head down there in a bit and plow again as the snow was piling up pretty good down there yesterday. I did pick up a new front u joint for blue thunder and that will be addressed this weekend