Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ice Fishing on Jewel Lake

In case you were wondering, the earthquake yesterday was a magnitude of 5.73 ML. What do you do after an earthquake in Alaska? Why walk out on a frozen lake and going ice fishing, of course! We went out to Jewel Lake yesterday so Brandon could try ice fishing. We tried to do it last year, but the weather and timing just never agreed. Jewel Lake is a pretty lake south of Anchorage, just west of the Dimond Mall. They have a man made beach there, and it's a hot spot during the summer months. The city decided to host free ice fishing this weekend to get the crowds out and about. They did a great job. They pre-drilled fishing holes for everyone, had people walking around offering bait and assistance, and provided all of the gear. It was well below freezing and windy out on the lake, so Russ did the tough part like baiting the hook and anything else that required taking gloves off. The hardest part was getting the bait to go down into the icy water. Think of trying to get a piece of shrimp to sink down to the bottom of a cup of half melted slushy (or icee). It's no easy feat.
It was a very interesting experience. You could tell where the schools of fish were traveling under the ice by where the excited cries of the kids were heard. It wasn't too long before Brandon caught a fish. I'm sure he is smiling under there somewhere. They provided bags, too, so you could take your fish home to eat, but we passed and donated our fish to a neighboring angler. We still have a lot of salmon in the freezer, and the thought of filleting a bunch of little fish wasn't that appealing.
On to more fishing.
Not only did the city provide free fishing, but they also held drawings the whole afternoon, and gave out great prizes. They had a big warming tent set up as well, and provided the frozen fishermen/women with hot chocolate, coffee, popcorn and donuts. Anchorage is definitely a family friendly city, and does a great job of providing year round entertainment. It started snowing again, and we were ready to head home and warm up.
Back to base and a warm couch and funny movie. Hope you enjoyed your Saturday as well.

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