Snow worsens ice fishing conditions - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Snow worsens ice fishing conditions

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WISCONSIN RAPIDS (WAOW) -

Ice fishing is a popular Wisconsin winter activity.

"It's really kind of a neat experience. It's a little different than typical open water fishing," said Jon Scharbarth of the Wisconsin DNR.

With Thursday's snowstorm, many would think now is the time for ice fishing to begin, but officials say the snow actually worsens ice conditions.

"It makes it difficult for ice to form because of the insulating factor. You know, the cold weather just can't get down there and doesn't make it as conducive to making good, solid ice," said Scharbarth.

And the snow can make it seem like there's more ice than there really is.

"In reality, the ice conditions are really thin, and with the snow covering it up, you might have a problem with recognizing that," said Scharbarth.

Fleet Farm Employees say their ice fishing equipment sales have been a little low due to the lack of ice, but they say people seem anxious to get out on the ice once conditions improve.

But these dangerous conditions haven't stopped some ice fishermen from enjoying their favorite winter activity.

"Amazingly, ice fishermen are pretty creative and pretty bold," said Scharbarth.

If people are going to get out on the ice, the DNR urges them to remember safety first.

"If they're going to go out, make sure that they have a plan. They let someone know where they're going to be, when they're going to be home and carry some safety equipment with them in case they were to fall through," said Scharbarth.

DNR officials say that another week or two of cold temperatures will help firm up the ice so people can safely fish.

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