The lure of the walleye, the danger on the ice

Isn’t this picture gorgeous?


It’s Lake Mille Lacs this morning, courtesy of Mille Lacs Webcam. Farther out there, you can see someone ice fishing. From the sound of things, they’re taking quite a chance.

Last night, the Brainerd Dispatch reports, about 20 anglers had to be rescued when a large area of ice broke free.

“We prefer that people not put themselves at risk,” Aitkin County sheriff Scott Turner said. “They (anglers) need to be mindful of the conditions.”

They are, apparently, but they go out anyway. Just a day or so earlier, a group had to be rescued from the ice on Picard Point, said.

And this video, posted on Flickr, shows a hovercraft approaching a fish house on the edge of open water.

A satellite image of the lake (from Mille Lacs Webcam), taken Tuesday, shows the problem: the lake isn’t locked up.


Dicky Gadbois of Liberty Beach Resort told the Mille Lacs Messenger that he’s been watching the Liberty Beach Public Access. “Guys are headed out there and they have no idea what’s waiting for them,” he said. “Someone’s going to die if this keeps up.”

Is it worth the risk? Someone who loves the lure of walleye enough to reach into ice cold water to catch the fish barehanded may well think so.

That’s some serious fishing.

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