Will this cold snap ever end?

It sure is a good thing that our summers are as nice as they are across Sunset Country because the cold weather we’ve had over the past month really has me questioning why anyone would want to live here.
Over the past week, I’ve had to spend my days outside after booking a multi-day ice-fishing trip with three anglers from the Hamilton area earlier in the winter.
For everyone who thinks my job is so great, I can tell you that I’ve been earning the time that I have coming up in Florida in a couple of weeks when I head down there for the first FLW Tour bass tournament of the year.
Daily temperatures since Saturday barely have touched minus-40 when you factor in the windchill, peaking on Sunday when it was around minus-50 on the ice.
I honestly can tell you that I think Sunday was the coldest day I’ve ever experienced—certainly while fishing.
Normally I would not even consider heading outdoors when temperatures are like this, but these guys travelled a long way to experience the great ice-fishing opportunities we have in this area.
Unfortunately, the conditions (not only the cold but the deep snow, as well) severely hampered our ability to get around and fish everywhere we wanted to go.
We were able to get out on Lake of the Woods on some of the ice roads that are scattered around the lake and set up portable shelters to fish out of.
I tried to be a tough guy and fish outside a few times, but it was a battle. It’s hard to keep your line and hole from freezing up within minutes and it was nearly impossible to fish without wearing gloves or mittens, which is what I usually do under normal winter conditions.
Finally, it’s very hard on the fish. Within a minute of being out of the water, their eyes and gill are freezing, which obviously is a bad deal because we were releasing most of the fish we were catching.
Considering the wicked conditions, the fishing actually has been OK over the past few days. We did not catch the numbers of fish that we might in March, when everything seems to get a little more active, but we were able to catch a few nice lake trout, a bunch of nice pike, a handful a big walleye, and enough eater-sized walleye to have a couple of nice meals out on the ice.
Although we weren’t able to have a full shore lunch over a fire with all the fixings, we did set up a portable propane cooker inside one of our shelters to cook some fish to snack on.
It was my first time eating fish in a while and regardless of the temperature, fresh walleye always tastes great!
The cold weather, however, is starting to get depressing for all of us. And you have to feel bad for all the wildlife across the region. I had a deer in my yard one evening over the weekend and it had a rough time just jumping through my yard in the deep snow.
Some of the bald eagles that have been hanging around, instead of flying south, also have to be hurting with the nasty windchill. It’s tough on everything.
Fortunately, it looks like we have a warming trend approaching this weekend. Let’s just hope we don’t get another foot of snow!
Stay warm!