Potential rain plus warm weather may place hold on ice fishing

Local News

Local 5 is tracking the potential for flooding and rain this weekend, that’s not-so-good news for those wanting to get out on the ice to fish.

Conditions on the Winnebago can be life threatening if the ice isn’t thick enough.

Ice expert Don Herman has rescued a number of people from the ice over the past 40 years, he says right now all the bays are about 8 inches thick.

12 inches is the safest base for the ice to be.

“Lake Winnebago is not completely frozen, there’s some open holes out there right now because of the warm weather,” says Herman. “And the ice can deteriorate pretty quick when we get some rain. Rain is going to be very havoc [sic] for the ice Sunday.”

Normally die-hard fishermen would be casting their lines in December.

But last year’s freezing temperatures allowed them to get out on the ice before the fishing season ramped up.

If you are going to risk heading out on the ice before we get colder weather, Herman says to take some extra steps to keep yourself safe.

“Make sure you got ice picks on,” he says. “I tell everybody the most important thing to wear is a whistle because if you do fall in you can’t yell. Hypothermia sets in, but you can always blow.”

Another tip to keep in mind: Herman says never go ice fishing by yourself, always take someone with you.

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