Ice thickens up due to cold, but extra caution advised

By Bill Bartusek

The cold weather has come and so has lake ice. Many of our area lakes froze over last week. In some places, anglers actually found enough ice to walk out and do some fishing. Don't get me wrong, the ice is very spotty and very thin in most areas. Now the snow has fallen, and thin ice with snow cover doesn't add up to safe travel on the ice.

Up north, many areas had quite a bit of ice before the snowfall. However, they have gotten even more snow than we have here. One of two things will happen now. The snow will insulate the ice and slow the ice development for sure. In some cases, the weight of the snow will force water unto the ice. If the weather is cold enough, it will freeze the saturated snow and quickly create thick ice.

I don't like this type of ice because it is weak and unpredictable. We'll just have to wait and see what happens.

The boy's deer hunt... My son Billy deer hunted at the farm near New Prague in mid-November. He was joined by Eugene and Kurt Palma. Also hunting was Brandon Palma. The boys hunted hard and long hours. They saw very few deer the first few days and finely made a few drives. Their luck didn't change as the posters failed to hit deer pushed by the drivers.

Finally on the second or third day, Eugene connected on a nice doe. The other three switched stands in hopes of finding different areas where the deer were moving.

On the last morning, a couple of the boys didn't even go out, tired of seeing no deer. Bill decided to give it one more try and picked a ground stand in Grandma Louise's woods.

At about 7 a.m. as the cold winds blew, Billy heard a noise. As he rolled over on the ground, a big buck jumped the creek, looking to be just 10 feet from Bill. Still lying on the ground, he quickly aimed and fired. The episode only lasted a few seconds. The buck ran off, so the boys returned an hour later and followed the blood trail to Bill's deer. I remember telling Bill that patience always pays off!

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