Hook, Line and Sinker: January 23, 2013

Big Pond Ice Fishing Contest
Big Pond was the destination for ice fishing enthusiasts on Saturday and Sunday, as well as for dozens of people participating in an ice fishing contest sponsored by Tom Phillips of Pepacton Bait & Tackle in Arkville.

Big Pond, located in the Town of Andes, is a 51-acre state-owned coldwater lake located along Big Pond Road. It is a unique fishery, in that ice fishermen have a chance at catching trout through the ice, and it is a popular choice for many ice fishermen.

The lake is stocked by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation annually with approximately 200 to 250 brown trout of eight to nine inches, and 250 rainbow trout from eight to nine inches in length.

In addition, a few hundred spent brown trout (large breeders up to 21 inches in length) are stocked in the lake after the spawning season in the fall.

Although the weather was first-rate, with a great opportunity to be out on the ice under beautiful sunny skies, it proved to be a slow day for catching fish. Of the approximately 40 anglers out on the ice, only a few trout were taken.

Fortunately, however, the angler who caught the largest of those trout had entered the contest. Jeremy Owen, of Margaretville, was fishing Saturday morning with a golden shiner when he brought in a large brown trout around 9 a.m. that weighed three pounds and measured 22 inches in length.
Jeremy not only had a great day out on the ice, but was also rewarded by finding out that he had won the contest – and a cash prize of $190 for his trout!