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Ice Fishing Can be a very exciting experience
One of the most popular recreational forms of fishing in Scandinavia, Russia and Germany is Ice Fishing, a sport also practiced in Canada and the United States, not only during winter, but also all year round in Alaska. However the most popular place to enjoy this activity is in the Great Lakes. Considered originally from Scandinavia, it was brought to America by Swedish, Norwegian and Finnish settlers arriving to Minnesota, a state where people from Nordic families is totally engaged in this sport. Ice fishing was exported to Canada from Minnesota and from here, it also arrived in Alaska.
Minnesotans found ice fishing an entertaining option, keeping in mind that the Great Lakes are often totally frozen, with the only exception being Lake Erie. When the bays of the Great Lakes freeze, yellow perch and northern pike are the most common catches waiting for enthusiasts of this sport. Ice fishing is practiced catching fish with lines and spears or hooks by opening a hole in the frozen lake to fish through. Depending on personal preferences, fishermen can sit in a heated cabin on the ice or on a stool placed on the open expanse of the frozen lake. Cabins are more popular indeed, because most of them have bunks and diverse amenities.
From all the forms of fishing, ice fishing is perhaps the activity requiring less effort and skill, just patience, good luck and the inner conviction of enjoy doing nothing else that sitting on ice, if not physical, at least exposed to low temperatures. For some people, this condition may appear unappealing but in the northern states, ice fishing is considered a serious entertaining activity with competitions and contests offering good prizes to people with the largest fish catches within a limited period of time.
One of the contests attracting more people every year is held at the Houghton Lake in Michigan. The "Tip-Up Town, USA", an annual festival celebrated the last 56 years ago during the second third of winter, and enhanced with other snow related activities such as strolling, snowmobiling, snow-sculpting and fireworks, in conjunction with Ice fishing.
While in the United States, Ice fishing contests have a prevalent carnival like atmosphere, full of camaraderie, in Finland, ice fishing contests have been defaced after repeated scandals involving both organizers and contestants, who have been caught cheating, making people belief this is not a sport, but just a pastime. However, in the United States there is an association supporting ice fishing activities, the American Ice Fishing Association (AIFA), which says that ice fishing contributes to managing the fish species population, and the economic growth of the community, bringing calming and relaxing effects of well being to all the participants.
Because ice fishing can be something more than a one-day experience, there are shelters conveniently located for longer fishing expeditions. Some others are mounted on-demand using simple structures, although the larger heated structures are basic for the success of fishing trips lasting several days.
There is a website that describes boat fishing, ice fishing, and has info on numerous freshwater fish, baits, and lures, plus other great freshwater fishing tips. The website is called: Fishing Stringer, and may be found at this address:
By Robert W. Benjamin
Copyright © 2006
You may publish this article in your ezine, newsletter or on your web site as long as it is reprinted in its entirety and without modification except for formatting needs or grammar corrections.
About the Author: Robert W. Benjamin has been in the software business on the internet for over 5 years, and has been producing low-cost software for the past 25+ years. He first released software on the AMIGA and C64 computer systems in the late 1970's-80's.