Well, it's certainly has been a winter for the ice fisherman! Consistently cold temps have created some great ice this year and this had enabled fisherman to get out into some areas that haven't been accessible for a few years now. Ice conditions in the islands are always variable and if you're not sure of the area, it's best to go with a local guide and we can help set you up if you're interested in that. For those that go it alone out there, it's best to sick to the nearshore islands before venturing too far out. There are many different sheets of ice that have formed in the islands, and some are thicker than others. As always, check your way out and remember no ice is safe, especially out there. For those concentrating on the deepwater bite, fishing depths of 50-150 feet with big bucktails, heavy tube bigs, jigging spoons and beetles rigged with cutbait are the best producers. Don't overlook the nearshore bite in the islands either, as all species of trout can be caught in these areas. Whitefishing has been a very consistent bite as well in the 60-80 foot depths. Big gold spoons rigged with a small white twister tail have been producing best.
In the bay proper the bite has been steady for the normal winter mixed bag. Lots of smelt around this year again, so that's been fun. A few cohos have been showing up here and there and splake and browns have been mixed in. Travel conditions are great for both snowmobiles and 4 wheelers out there, though snowmobiles have been best in the bigger water areas with all the cracks.