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Sox Fan and I fished the contest at the Buttes; I hadn’t been there in about 4 or 5 years and it showed. We got to the lake around 2 pm on Friday to set up huts. My batteries with my Gator had an issue (I think one got damaged in the move, I had taken them out, why I dont know for the life of me, but I will be buying a battery...as my friend Tom says of the new house...wait for it!...CHHHAAAA CHIIIINNNNGGG...a new chapter in the money pit) so the trip started poorly, the manual 6 Mora and two feet of ice would be interesting. We chose the point that is north of boat ramp about a half mile away, there is quite a bit of snow on the lake so no sled or ATV and no power auger made this a throw back trip in a hurry. As I uttered to Brandon...getting too old and fat for this sheet. I can see I need to trout fish this area more, once a year isn’t cutting it; either that or I need to make a map. We drilled a bunch of holes found a nice 10-foot deep clearing next to some weeds and set up our sheds and staked them down. Lazy snow was the weather report for Saturday. Saturday we were optimistic going to fish shallow water early and then move to deep water at mid morning. We started fishing at first light, I can say I think I picked the worst spot of any ice spot I have ever had, I also committed a cardinal sin of not moving soon enough, the 6 inch manual auger had something to do with and so did the sideways snowstorm that blew in. Brandon scored first with a 17 inch brown on a big old chubby darter; we were taking it Bernie’s wife’s slogan style, to big or go home. But it was inside the brown trout slot release size of everything 14 to 20 inches goes back. He didn’t take a picture; it was a classic beautiful fat brown which is good because it seems like sometimes at North Lake they can be kind of snaky, this one wasn’t. Brandon had several other fish come, me I saw nothing in 2.5 hours, for an additional half an hour I put the camera down and saw one fish on the perimeter, the weeds in my area were flat, I wonder with how slow the fish was swimming if it was a low oxygen area although I saw scuds on the camera. I flat just chose my spot poorly and with conditions tried to wait it out. I packed up my sled that is a flip over and headed for the middle of the lake and 20 feet of water and after a bit of changing baits finally got some fish in. Brandon would see occasional ones at his spot but they were few and far between. I was using bigger tubes in the 4 inch laker size, had a few hits but they were light, finally scored a twenty inch rainbow on a gold walleye spoon I had picked up in Granby, I big metal slabbing type spoon with a nice dieing flutter. Again this fish was in the 18-22 inch range that fish must be put back. I had more fish in and couldn’t get them to go, Brandon came out and tried to bucket it, about that time it turned to hurricane wind out of the north obliterating views of other shelters. It was starting to remind me of trip another north contest where we decided to bail because of worsening conditions about 15 years ago or so where some of the people who stayed I heard were stuck at North for 2 days. So I went back to my previous spot and watched the weather and watched no fish come in. About 3 pm we decided to call it. We had billion pound sleds to haul back over fresh powder; I really need a snowmobile, maybe next year. So did as poorly as I have ever done there, I clearly stayed too long in one spot, and something I wouldn’t do in a boat. It was fun and Brandon’s first trip to the Buttes; he was averse to moving since he was working on what sounded like a good case of Bronchitis. I did run into Roman, his brother and his friend, they were set up not far from us but moved sometime on Saturday. So they may not have done well in the area either, hopefully they found the mother lode because we did not. I need to GPS some spots for next year since I don’t fish it often enough. Next year I will just fish deep water from the get go, I have always done better out there. You think I would learn. So not much of a report. We did see one kewl thing Friday night. Three Meese (my plural version for moose or mooses) running a fence line looking for a place to cross to get to an alder thicket. They crossed in front of us and then ran next to the vehicle before again jumping the fence into the alder thicket going full blast in deep snow and jumped that barbed wire fence effortlessly and gracefully. Brandon tried to get action photos on his cell phone. Sorry for the lack of photos, didn’t take time was fishing hard but as slayer said not much catching so I should have photos right. I hope Jamie won, if anyone deserves to it is he, all the time he puts in up there.
 

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ZMAN: I fished Delany South on Saturday and caught a few on 3"olive tube jigs with a pink 1/16 oz. jig head. Nothing over 17".Fished East on Friday and caught a 24.5" bow on jigging Rapala and a ton of 13-15" bows. Fished North on Thursday about where you fished and caught 3 on pink shrimpos. I couldn't get rented snowmobile to fire up and did the same hike you did. What a killer for an old guy. That storm was something! I thought me, shelter and snowmoble all were going for a ride. Was it you who posted the email from DOW on the use of sented lures? I cannot find the post. Thanks
 

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nope, i didnt catch anything...my ex-gf caught a 21 3/4 cutbow, and my buddy kirk caught a weird looking male cutbow, this things head was huge, and the body was really small for the size of the head, it was weird looking... and i think quicksilver's buddy dylan ended up winning, he caught a nice one about 100 yds from us...it was a freakin zoo out there...more people than i have ever seen there...i only saw one fish all day and it wasnt even a big one...not sure what is going on up there this year, i am doin terrible up there this year...
 

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It was another long day in walden for us, i was up at 3:30 am and fishing by 6:00 am and didnt get home until 11:30 with the bad roads, fishing was actually pretty good, we caught about 10 fish in the morning before 10 o clock between three of us and not a fish after that. I couldn't believe the number of shelters already set up from the day before when we got out there. All of the fish we caught except for one were between the slots so they all had to go back. Then at 9:30 my good buddy Dillon says hes got a big one on the line. Ten minutes later we headed to the weigh station trailer and found out he had 1st place. His fish passed the second place fish by just a quarter inch. The official measurment of his fish was 41.30'', 26.5'' long 7lbs. Dillon and i have fished up in Walden just about every weekend since there was ice up there. He has put his time in and he deserved it. As always it was good to talk to Jamie and Scott (justfish). Heres a picture of the winner.
 

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Nice job Dillon, way to cash on the time you've been spending up there. Zman you should of driven your truck out there,I was fishing just north of you in the silver F150 and ended catching 9 fish with the biggest being 21 1/4". I know you won't give up yet Jamie you"re due.
 

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Caught a 19 inch brown and a fat 18 1/2 inch bow lost a money fish around 8am. :( Saw another money fish later in the day just never committed to my jig! Had a good time hanging with some good folk! The snow drifts where brutal when getting off the ice, should have dragged up the sleds!
 
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Quicsilver171 said:
just fish said:
Hey Curtis do you what the top five results were?
not too sure the smallest fish was 38.5'' and the biggest was Dillons 41.30'' All of the top 3 fish were over 25'' in length.
41.3" and 38.5"......... sure you dont mean Centimeters ??
 

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thats awesome curtis....tell dillon i said congrats...he deserved it, he is a good dude, you guys fish together as a team well... you were right about that fish, it doesnt look that big... and especially a female, they are usually fat as heck, especially being that long....still an awesome day to catch one that big for sure....
 

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Very nice report......a long day but some genuine Piggies to go along with it. I'm planning on trying that area when the ice goes away this spring, leave a few for us "Softwater" Floridians.

Bill
 

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Congrats Dillon - that is a great fish!

Mark, nice to see you up there and nice to meet you Brandon. We didn't start by you guys on Saturday, we went to the other side of the lake. We had a couple of hits, but no solid hooksets. We moved around 8am about a 1/4 mile from you - man was that a heck of a blizzard-type storm for a while! After we drilled our holes, I saw a fish come up from the bottom on the Lowrance as I was dropping my first jig down the hole. I closed the bail and it nailed it! A sub 18" rainbow was brought to the surface. About an hour later a 19.5" bow hammered my copper spoon. Those were the only two fish my group caught at north. My buddy and brother were getting frustrated and wanted to get away from dissapointment that is often found fishing the north lake.

We moved to the south lake for the rest of the day. Action was pretty slow, but my buddy turned in a sub 18" fish the last hour since there were many people leaving later in the afternoon. Not sure if his fish held for an hourly, as we didn't want to break down the pop up camper to drive into town. We decided to keep fishing into the night. I did get a nice 21.5" cutbow around 8pm that night - at least I won the $10 bet between my group for whoever caught the biggest fish! It was a little tough getting off the lake at night with two sleds and 3 people on the ATV - I'm just glad I had all 4 tires chained up with all the snow that fell!

On Sunday morning we woke up to another 6 or so inches of snow. We packed camp up and drove to south to fish for an hour. It was much better action as we caught about 12 in that hour - all under 19". I am very grateful to Jamie for giving us the heads up that Berthoud Pass was closed, and for getting us a couple gallons of water Sat since my brother forgot our water for the trip - thanks a lot man, we really appreciated both good deeds! We ended going back home via HWY 14.

We had a good time, even though the weather was pretty tough.
 

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BabyHuey said:
I am very grateful to Jamie for giving us the heads up that Berthoud Pass was closed, and for getting us a couple gallons of water Sat since my brother forgot our water for the trip - thanks a lot man, we really appreciated both good deeds! We ended going back home via HWY 14.
no problem at all dude, ya gotta take care of your homies...we all will need some help sooner or later...i wonder how long the roads getting in there are gonna be closed for now?
 

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BabyHuey said:
We moved around 8am about a 1/4 mile from you - man was that a heck of a blizzard-type storm for a while!
I was simply amazed to see so some groups of guys fishing outside all day especially during the blizzard. There was a couple times where i couldnt even see my four wheeler outside my window. for the first time this year i had to put my extra support bars in my hut.
 

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Quicsilver171 said:
BabyHuey said:
We moved around 8am about a 1/4 mile from you - man was that a heck of a blizzard-type storm for a while!
I was simply amazed to see so some groups of guys fishing outside all day especially during the blizzard. There was a couple times where i couldnt even see my four wheeler outside my window. for the first time this year i had to put my extra support bars in my hut.
You don't need no stinking hut ,you got to be tough to fish in the west. ;D ;D ;D
 

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just fish said:
Quicsilver171 said:
BabyHuey said:
We moved around 8am about a 1/4 mile from you - man was that a heck of a blizzard-type storm for a while!
I was simply amazed to see so some groups of guys fishing outside all day especially during the blizzard. There was a couple times where i couldnt even see my four wheeler outside my window. for the first time this year i had to put my extra support bars in my hut.
You don't need no stinking hut ,you got to be tough to fish in the west. ;D ;D ;D
you just need your truck with a camper on the ice with you to climb into when in gets crazy... ;D

just kiddin scott, we know that you never climb in there but ice fishing isnt about how tough you are but about how much fun you have.... crappy weather = not much fun for me
 
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