Headed up to the cabin on Friday afternoon with my wife and son for the weekend. Saturday morning we headed out at about 7 am, stopped and picked up minnows and than drove about 30 km and parked the truck and trailer at the end of the road. From there we went about 25 km on the sled to a back lake that I have only ever fished in the summer. Additionally this was my wife's first time fishing hard or soft water in 30+ years - so the pressure was on to ensure a good time.
Gotta love it when the only tracks are your own from turning around at your destination:
Snow conditions were pretty good with 8 to 10 inches of snow on top of 1 or 2 inches of slush in the morning but increased to 3 to 6 inches of slush when we left at dark - but still fine for the sled and toboggan (which my son rode on top of as the sled only seats 2).
Got the shelter up and the heat on pretty fast so that my son and wife could start fishing right away. Sled stayed parked right there for the rest of the day as there was no need to move:
While they fished I took my el-cheapo power auger and drilled 12 more 8 inch holes at varying depths all within about 150 yards of the shelter. Ice thickness averaged 25 inches and was about 15 inches of clear ice and 10 inches of white ice. El-Cheapo worked great - 14 holes at 25 inches each is 350 inches of ice. That amount took one battery down to about 60% - so in theory 800 inches of 8 inch hole on one battery. I always have two batteries so i can't imagine a day (1600 inches) where i would run out if they start charged. Total cost for el-cheapo (not including the drill) was $71 for the auger, $14 for the adaptor, and 2$ for threaded rod and hardware to modify the shaft so the auger won't fall down a hole if it comes loose at the wrong moment:
My son caught the first fish of the day - a 12 inch brookie that we had along with another for breakfast today. Remaining trout went back.
My wife was focused on perch and we put lots in the 10 to 12 inch size range into the freezer:
I caught the fewest and was focused on walleye. Ended up with 3. The smallest was 17 inches and largest was 19.5 inches. Guy in the photo measures 18.5 inches. They all came home with me.
Weather was great and most importantly everyone had a lot of fun. As you can see though the old man was relegated to the outside holes.