Tag Archives: ice fishing

Enjoying the Outdoors in Siouxland, Ice Fishing at Moorehead Park, Ida Grove

14 Jan
Ice fishermen try their luck for some action at a pond in Moorehead Park in Ida Grove, Iowa Saturday, Dec 31, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

When growing up I did a little river and pond fishing near my home. It was fun, challenging, peaceful. Sometimes I spent more time just looking at nature and letting my imagination run away while sitting there fighting off bugs and mosquitos and waiting for some fish to bite.

In Siouxland when out and about I see people fishing at various places I traverse. But I never understood the appeal of ice fishing. It’s cold out, and colder still when one is not moving about and seated on ice. I have photographed a few hockey games in my day and was always glad to get away from the ice as it was sometimes colder during the winter indoors at a game than going outside to return to a newspaper office.

Whenever I see folk trying their luck I am always reminded of that movie with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemon, “Grumpy Old Men”. A too funny comedy, at least I thought so at the time. Although art and life and life an art imitating one another may or may not be true.

A fisherman walks out onto the ice to try his luck at Moorehead Park in Ida Grove, Iowa Saturday, Dec 31, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)
Ice fishermen chat while waiting for some action at a pond in Moorehead Park in Ida Grove, Iowa Saturday, Dec 31, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

But enough people do ice fish and seem to enjoy it. I never asked though if they catch the same fish summer or winter. And if the time of year made a difference to the taste. Change of seasons and food source available for the fish, like honey bees near a clover field or a field of flowers. Different types of pollen affects the end result of the honey produced. But maybe fish aren’t that complicated.

I prefer to just stomp around the woods and trails, trying to keep warm while walking and looking for critters, when moving on four legs or two, each make for a good subject depending on the moment.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

An ice fisherman joins a couple others who are waiting for some action at a pond in Moorehead Park in Ida Grove, Iowa Saturday, Dec 31, 2022. (Photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Enjoying Winter Activities in Siouxland, Bacon Creek Park

24 Feb

People kill a little time looking at their phone while ice fishing at Bacon Creek park Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

As winters in the Siouxland area seem to embrace extremes, warmer temps, then freezing below zero temps, I admire those who like to embrace winter activities and get out to enjoy them. Ice fishing is one such activity. As a youngster I ran out onto a small stream bed covered in ice and made the mistake of finding an area where it wasn’t frozen solid. I write about that now as it was because of an older brother who fished me out and helped get me home to warm up and become wiser. I don’t venture out onto ice at all anymore, even when the temps are dipping below zero.

People ice fish at Bacon Creek park Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

But some people love the sport of fishing and try their hand every year to catch whatever nibbles at their bait through the ice. It’s a nice way to enjoy the outdoors. And it also makes me think of the movie that included Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau, “Grumpy Old Men”, something I can enjoy in the comfort of my home, drinking another cup of coffee and thinking, that’s really swell.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A man begins preparations to ice fish at Bacon Creek park Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Fall leaves frozen in the lake at Bacon Creek park Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019 in Sioux City, Iowa. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Enjoying the Play of Light in Siouxland, Okoboji

5 Mar

I must be stuck in a spting-fever mode after the recent warm up that occurred in Siouxland. Seeing sunshine just makes a person happy I think, or maybe it’s just me. On a trip up to the lakes region and stopping to watch some ice fishermen/women trying their hand, as well as shadows created on the ice covered lake area it was just nice to be out and about enjoying what is come to come.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Enjoying a Day of Sunshine in Siouxland, Okoboji

27 Feb

During a brief “warm up” that in Siouxland that saw temps reach 70 degrees in February, a few people were out and about enjoying it, even though snow still covered the ground in places. In Okoboji this particular day I chatted with a gentleman who was fishing off a walkway bridge on one of the area lakes. He told me a whopper of a fish story that made me smile, although I do believe him. But he wasn’t mad, just enjoying the nice day.

The gentleman said he had caught a 19′ walleye or pike or some other type of fish whose name I don’t recall in West Okoboji Lake just minutes before I spoke with him. He said he has had pretty good luck fishing in the region and got lucky another day. But as he was reeling the fish up to where he was standing on the walkway, a muskrat comes scurrying over the ice on the lake and stole his fish. He said he watched the critter scurry again across the lake carrying his fish and hook. He sounded sad he had lost the hook. The gentleman though didn’t have ill will toward the little guy since all creatures have to eat, and this particular day the muskrat didn’t get unduly wet getting his lunch. And minutes before I was photographing an otter who came out to explore the sunshine along with the humans getting teased by mother nature that spring is on the way, but not quite yet, as later the following week 10-12 inches of snow blanketed much of Siouxland.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

 

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