We arrived in Houghton Lake to a great sunrise and blue sky morning. The ice was 21 to 24 inches thick and we were set for our first stop. My cousin Bryan DeFauw and I went to Lymen's on the lake to pick up some bait and to find out where the Up North Journal crew and friends were at in the sleeper shanties. The people at Lymen's were awesome to say the least. They were friendly and courteous and even provided a taxi service out onto the ice to get you to the shanties.
Bryan and I discussed our plan for hitting the lake with our tip-ups and proceeded to re-tap a few holes close by the shanties. With our limit of lines in the water, we enjoyed the warming weather and waited and watched for our flags to take off from the tip-ups.
After about a hour we had our fist flag. Bryan took it and pulled in a nice 20 inch pike. It was nice but under sized to be a keeper and so he let it free. A few minutes later, I got my first fish; a small perch that thought he was bigger than what he really was .Bryan also pulled in another small perch.
With the fishing slow an employee of Lymen's stopped by and chatted and gave the group some tips as to wear to go on the lake. So, we split up into a few small groups and headed out further out onto the ice.
Dan checking a line