Thursday, December 28, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Access Open and Fish House Rentals have begun!

We opened up our lake access for vehicle traffic today. We are finding a lot of very good ice in the 11.5 to 13 inch range on areas like Cemetery Reef, Waconia Bay, Parts of Center Reef (where there aren’t marked spots), Pillsbury Reef and Wagener’s Bay. We are NOT driving all over the lake, as we have not checked ice everywhere and still have areas of concern that we have found marked with thin ice signs or lath board with flagging tape. If you are looking for ice thicknesses on areas we have not mentioned, we likely will not be doing any checks to locations like the north shore, Keg’s, Red’s, North and Anderson’s Reefs. We understand many people will be excited to spread out with wheel houses to locations away from the crowds, but please check ahead of yourself. If you would like to use our access it is $1 to walk out, $2 to drive with any vehicle or $25 for a season pass. As always, when driving out from our access, it is drive at your own risk.

We are now RENTING FISH HOUSES! We have all 5 houses on the lake and will be in full swing this weekend. We have them set up on locations best for sunfish, crappies and northern pike, with the occasional chance at a walleye. The fish houses are about a mile out, so they are beyond walking distance. We look forward to accommodating you on the ice, but please realize you will either need to drive to the fish houses with a vehicle, 4-wheeler or snowmobile. Currently the ice on the way to and around the rentals is averaging 12 to 12.5 inches. Please call (952) 442-2096 to reserve!

We look forward to seeing you on the lake!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Waconia Ice Report - 12/26/17

We just got off the lake to get you the most up-to-minute Lake Waconia Ice Report. This arctic blast of cold has really helped increase ice thicknesses.  It’s common to find an average of 10.5 to 11 inches of ice in most clear areas by Wagener’s Bay, Pillsbury Reef, parts of Center Reef (where there aren’t old goose holes),  Waconia Bay and to Cemetery Reef.  Where there is snow, expect to find up to 1.5 inches less ice.

Shockingly, the major goose hole north of Center Reef still has a small area that remains open water.  The ice around that location has less thickness as well. We caution everyone to check their own ice before placing permanent fish houses, especially in the Center Reef area.  Stop in to the marina to see where these areas are on our map.

Friday, December 22, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Waconia Ice Report - Quick update 12/22/17

First and foremost we hope everyone has a Merry Christmas! Our hours this weekend are Saturday from 8am – 5:30 pm, Christmas Eve Sunday from 8am – 4pm, and Closed Christmas Day. After Christmas, on Tuesday Dec. 26th we begin our regular winter hours which will be Monday thru Friday from 8am – 6pm and on Saturday/Sunday from 7am – 6pm.

We did a quick ice check today, 12/22/17. We did not drill tons of holes, but went to some of the usual areas people fish for early ice. Waconia Bay, Wagener’s Bay and Pillsbury Reef are some of the best spots to find good ice. Under limited snow spots we found as little as 6.5 inches, but up to 8 to 8.25 inches where there wasn’t snow. As always, please check ahead of yourself if you plan to go out with anything heavy.

Keep in mind, all of the areas we have been watching with concern, remain areas to avoid. The main goose hole we’ve talked about remains open with an area at least 50 yards long. Please read our prior reports that go into more detail about those locations.

The ice will continue to build as the cold continues! We hope to report more good news after Christmas! We’ll see you at the lake!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Waconia Ice Report - 12/19/17

We were out to check ice thicknesses again today, 12/19/17. Because of the warmer weather, we lost most of the tacky snow that gave us some traction, so it’s a very good idea to wear ice cleats when walking out there. We haven’t gained much thickness since our last report, but the ice is still in good shape to walk out on, with lots of 6 to 7 inches in Wagener’s Bay, Pillsbury Reef and Waconia Bay.

However, we still have some areas to avoid. Previous goose hole locations like North Center reef and north of Center Reef are still thin or open. They are lightly marked with lath board and flagging tape. There is another area that an angler marked just north of West Center Reef (and east of Pillsbury) that is thinner as well. We also marked a long pressure ridge that extends south and west of Coney Island (see the pic below). That Ridge will be one to watch out for a while. We also marked 2 of the main springs (see pic of one of them below) that we annually keep an eye on and a thinner area well east of Cemetery Reef and west of Anderson’s Reef. They were not technically “open”, but dangerous nonetheless.

As for 4-wheeling, we don’t want to sound hypocritical, as we did today’s check with our ATV’s. However, we are CONSTANTLY paying attention for strange looking ice and drilling lots of holes along the way. We also avoid all of the bad areas with the wheeler and walk to mark them if possible. So, in summation, as always, ice is never safe. Because of the locations we mentioned above, we still think it’s generally a good idea to walk out to get to your fishing spot. If you decide to take an ATV, please check ahead of yourself, especially if going way out on the main lake. We CANNOT mark every area of bad ice on the lake, and we have not checked over ½ of the lake.

Hopefully the arctic blast coming later in the week into next week will help us get even more exciting news to discuss in the future as the ice thickens. We look forward to the ice conditions hopefully improving, but will likely not be doing another extensive report until after Christmas.

Speaking of Christmas, our Bait Shop will be CLOSED on Christmas Day. Christmas Eve we will be open until at least 4pm, so stop in for that last minute fishing gift or gift certificate! Also, don’t forget we RENT FISH HOUSES! Our rental season hasn’t started yet, but will soon! Our Fish House Rentals are a popular Christmas gift for the fisherperson in your family that wants to get ice fishing in comfort without the hassle of finding the spot or drilling all the holes.

Good luck fishing and we’ll see you on the ice!

Saturday, December 16, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Waconia Ice Report - 12/16/17

We were out checking ice on Lake Waconia all afternoon today, 12/16/17. Most of our day was spent marking the 2 major goose holes we reported on Tuesday. Pay attention for lath board and flagging tape we used to mark these areas. We found more areas of concern today, specifically a ½ mile long pressure ridge that extends from the NW side of Coney Island to the north, ending west of the south side of Keg’s Reef. Part of this area had dangerously thin ice that was previously old goose holes we had not seen yet. The areas above are why we caution everyone from 4-wheeling on the main lake at this time. If you are thinking of going out with an ATV, please pay attention and spend some time checking ahead of yourself. Keep in mind, we still have not been able to check over ½ of the lake, as well as the historical areas we’ve had springs in past years. We hope to do some further checking in the coming week.

Locations like Waconia Bay, the walleye hole between the marinas, “under the wires”, Pillsbury Reef and into Wagener’s Bay where we have drilled, we are seeing ice averaging between 5.5 to 6.5 inches of ice. Those areas are common early ice locations that we recommend fishing. These areas are close to walk to and provide good action all season long. Because we cannot cover every square inch of the lake (even in locations we are talking about in this paragraph), we never say ice is safe. Always use caution during early ice. Happy fishing!

*If you would like to see videos of our ice checks today, please check them out on our Facebook Page!

Friday, December 15, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Waconia Ice Report - 12/15/17

We were hoping to do a more extensive ice check today, but due to illness we have a shortened report. We were able to walk out east of the marina to the "walleye hole" between the marinas, out to Cemetery Reef and to the east end of Coney Island. We still found a smaller area of 4 inches on part of Cemetery Reef, but a lot of the ice we drilled was 5.5 to 6 inches. We are comfortable walking to the early season fishing spots!

We have not been back to the areas we checked on Tuesday, but hope to do so this weekend if all goes well. We still see lots of geese out on North Center Reef and north of Center Reef, so there remains open water and/or very thin ice on those locations. As always, we recommend paying close attention during early ice time and to check ahead of yourself if you are going somewhere no one has been yet.

Happy Fishing!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Waconia Ice Report - 12-12-17

Here is the Lake Waconia Ice Report from yesterday 12/12/17...

We are very happy with the ice growth from yesterday 12/11/17  to today 12/12/17. Because of that, we will be opening for the season this Friday, 12/15 at 9:30 am. Hours for now while we wait for the ice to thicken will be Monday thru Friday, 9:30 am to 5:30 pm, and Saturday & Sunday from 8 am to 5:30 pm. Winter Season Access Passes will be available for the same low price of $25.

We took a long walk on the ice today from the In Towne Marina access to Waconia Bay and “Under the Wires”, out past North Center Reef, west over Center Reef, on to Pillsbury Reef into Wagener’s Bay and off the Public Access. What we found was both good and bad. Please watch our video below!

I’ll start with the bad, because it is VERY important! There remain areas of OPEN WATER that still exist near and on North Center Reef, as well as north of Center Reef, because of geese keeping them open. If that sounds confusing, please stop in to our marina on Friday and we’ll show you where we are talking about. They are both long (100 yds and 200 yds long) and definitely wide enough to cause problems now and in the future as the ice around them continues to grow. They are currently unmarked. We could also see another flock of geese east of Keg’s Reef, so there is likely some open water in that general location as well (we did not make it over there to check it out). Keep in mind, we have NOT checked any of ice on the east-central or eastern side of the lake.

The GOOD news is that we found a lot of very nice ice in the 4.25 to 6 inch range that anglers will like walking on, as most of it has very good traction. The average hole we drilled was about 5 inches thick. We did come across a small 24’ x 36’ area that had as little as 3 inches, as it clearly froze over later than the ice around it. That is why we always caution to pay close attention wherever you go during early ice, as it rarely freezes uniformly. Another thing to keep an eye on is a very long 12” wide crack that runs from Center Reef all the way in front of Pillsbury and over to the west shoreline south of the Rock Dock. The ice around it looks good, but it should still be looked at if you plan on doing anything other than walking over it.

Overall, our message is always the same; ICE IS NEVER SAFE, especially early ice. While we feel VERY good about many of the early season locations anglers venture to, things can always change, so be diligent and check ahead of yourself.

We look forward to seeing you this Friday and beyond! Happy Fishing!

Monday, December 11, 2017

In Towne Marina Lake Waconia Ice Updates coming soon

We took a short, quick walk a couple hundred feet from shore today in front of the marina.  We found as little as 2.5 inches and turned back.  We hope overnight temps allow a little more growth so we can expand our walk further on Tuesday 12/12.  If we are comfortable enough to go further, we will update later tomorrow.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Ice is forming on Lake Waconia - In Towne Marina ice check updates coming next week!

Ice is forming on Lake Waconia! It’s getting closer to Ice Fishing Season! As of 12/7/17 the lake is mostly frozen or in the process of freezing.  We are patiently waiting to do our 1st ice check of the season until next week.  We remain closed while we wait for the ice to thicken.  Updates will be coming when we know more.  We appreciate everyone’s patience as we always err on the side of caution.  Let’s keep the cold weather coming!