NU Sports Area anglers will bring their ice fishing event to the ground | News, sports, jobs

NU Sports Area anglers will bring their ice fishing event to the ground |  News, sports, jobs


Members of the New Ulm Area Sports Fishermen stand at the boat dock to access the waters of Clear Lake. Members agree the ice is not thick enough to hold the annual ice fishing competition, but the fundraising event will be held on land Sunday. Don Hanks, Jim Holke, Hillard Johnson, Greg Klinkner, Mark Dower, Dwight Nelson, and Evergie Wells

NEW ULM — For the second time this year, a local ice fishing competition will be held on land without ice fishing.

The New Ulm Area Sports Anglers (NUASF) will hold their 37th Annual Clear Lake Fishing Event on Sunday, February 11, but due to unseasonably warm temperatures, festivities will be held on land in the parking lot near the water access site.

Last Sunday, the annual Sleepy Eye Ice Fishing Derby was forced to make the same concession due to thin ice.

Several NUASF members visited Clear Lake on Monday to plan how to conduct the ice fishing derby without ice fishing.

At first glance, Clear Lake seems safe. A layer of ice covers the entire lake, but a closer look around the edge of the beach confirms that it is not thick enough to support ice fishing.

“We won’t go out on the ice.” NUASF member Hillard Johnson said. “I wouldn’t advise anyone else to go there either.”

Members agreed that the ice was not safe. Member Jim Holke said he didn’t even want to go out on the ice in its current condition. Members agreed they would need at least 15 or 16 inches of ice before it would be safe to fish, and with the temperature holding steady above freezing, that was unlikely to happen by Sunday.

In fact, daily temperatures are expected to remain in the 50s through Thursday. By Sunday, temperatures will remain above freezing and reach 36 degrees.

However, NUASF will still hold its annual event rain, shine or thin ice. The annual ice fishing competition is NUASF’s top fundraising event of the year.

Holk said this is not the first time the event has been held on the ground. There was a previous year when the ice was very thin. The celebrations were held at a camp adjacent to the lake. Unfortunately, the camp is not available due to the warm weather.

In addition to reducing ice, warm weather created muddy conditions at the campground, preventing its use this year. Celebrations will be limited to the water-accessible parking lot.

The facility the public will need is to park on one side of the town road leading to the water access site. NUASF member Mark Dower suggested moving guests to the parking area. He recommended people attending the event consider car collecting.

While fishing will not be possible, NUASF hopes families will attend with young people interested in fishing. The main goal of the ice fishing competition is to attract young people to fishing.

Each year, NUASF gives away hundreds of free prizes to children who attend the fishing competition. Any child registered gets prizes. This year, two lifetime fishing licenses will be given to a boy and girl under 15 years old. Anyone under 15 years old can register for this award. There is no cost to register a child.

The event will take place from 11am to 3pm on Sunday. There will be food available and other activities. NUASF members are planning a bonfire.



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