Ice Fishing

Yesterday we went ice fishing in Ramfjorden with Steve and my sister. We gathered as much advice as we could from people who had done it before, and went to try our luck. The weather was not ideal – a complete blizzard! It took us a while to drive there, and to find somewhere to park where the snow wasn’t too deep.  We found a place outside somebody’s house, who was kind enough to let us go through his “garden” (/snowfield) and gave us some advice too. He said he hoped we would provide him with some entertainment… thanks ;)

The first challenge was getting across the broken ice at the edge of the fjord, where the tide goes up and down. We used ski poles to check the ice, and made it across safely. We went to about the middle of the fjord and started drilling holes with an old auger we borrowed from NPI – quite hard work! The ice was very hard and about half a metre thick. 

We had three sets of fishing equipment – one weedy set that was actually meant for fishing on a frozen lake (which I bought without asking for advice), and two hand lines (extra strong) with a 200 gr (20 cm long!) stainless steel lure (the bait). Steve and Paul went to a specialist fishing shop to ask for advice and were shocked to be recommended such a huge lure. It doesn’t look much like a fish, just a large piece of shiny metal – I don’t know why a fish would ever try to eat that! 

Below is my sister with the weedy lake fishing equipment, and the snow woman she built after she got bored…

 

We fished for about an hour, and didn’t catch anything, though Paul kept saying he ALMOST caught one (it got away though). We were a bit clueless about what kind of strategy to use, so we tried all kinds of things but nothing seemed to work. We almost gave up, but decided to move to a different location, to drill some new holes to keep warm and see if we had more luck over there. We let my sister try the proper equipment, even though she said she had no idea what to do and wasn’t that keen. After a few minutes she started screaming that she had caught something!! She was too scared to hold the line, in the picture below you can see her frightened look while Paul and Steve reeled in the fish…

 

When the fish got to the hole, Paul and Steve started screaming too, as it was HUGE. It was hard to get it through the hole! It had a huge gaping mouth. We were pretty sure it was a cod, though we had to check on Wikipedia when we got home ;). So here are the classic posing pictures…

 

We tried our luck for a bit longer, but soon got bored and cold and decided to go home. That fish looked big enough for dinner anyway. We bought some vegetables on the way back, and went home to gut and fillet the beast. None of us had ever done anything like this before! So with a little help from the BBC and a funny New Zealander on YouTube, we worked out how to do it. My sister was terrified and didn’t want to watch or listen. I also wasn’t that comfortable, so I just read out the instructions to Steve and Paul and let them do the dirty work ;). We were pretty clueless and it took a while, but the end results were two huge and tasty looking fillets! One was big enough to feed the four of us for dinner, so we still have a lot left.

It was a fun experience, and now that we have the equipment, I think we might do it again!

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5 Responses to “Ice Fishing”

  1. atmozphere says:

    awesome story hanneke! you guys definitely needed marion over there. hahahahaha…or any experienced norwegian for that matter. she’s good at fishing, gutting, filleting (is this a word? the spell check doesn’t complain!) and all those things. I bet she is going to be envious while reading your last two posts, particularly the ski trip one. speaking of which, I am impressed with laura going for a such a long trip given it was her firs x-country trip. say hello to her for me.

  2. Angler says:

    That was a good catch! I haven’t tried to catch some fish over that cold weather but it’s nice to know that you’re sharing it. Looks like I’ve got a good reference to ponder for new, cool fishing techniques. Thanks for the share buddy.

  3. Nem says:

    Wow!! What a huge Cod :) I’ve very impressed by your ice fishing capabilities – and you got a tasty dinner too!

  4. Hanneke says:

    @”atmozphere” HAHA… it would definitely have been good to have a Norwegian on the trip with us.. we were so clueless!! You guys should just come visit us, so many fun things to do here :) Yeah I was very impressed with my sister too, she did so well on our skiing trip, with so little experience!

    @Angler: Thanks! I am happy you enjoyed my post. It was my very first fishing experience, so not sure I am a very good source for new techniques ;) but we go ice fishing again this winter!

    @Nem: thanks :) it was huge indeed!! we were all a bit shocked by the size of the monster ;)

  5. Geweldig verhaal! Laura kan wel vissen vangen zeg! ;) Wel sneu voor het slachtoffer hoor. Het leven als een ijsbeer zou jullie goed af gaan :P

    Hier in Spanje komen ondertussen allerlei bomen en bloemen in het wild al in bloei, geloof je het??

    Groetjes!!