Winter's midway point is now officially in the rear-view which has traditionally meant enough ice cover for the plethora of ice fishing contests that take place each year throughout the Adirondacks.
This year is certainly no exception and fishing competitions have been planned from Lake Pleasant to Schroon Lake to Lake George.
Here is a quick look at upcoming ice fishing tournaments throughout the region:
Saturday, Feb. 14
• The Chazy Rod and Gun Club will host its second annual Cabin Fever Ice Fishing Derby. The event will be held from sunrise until 5 p.m. The Weathercock Pub, 9688 State Route 9, will host a spaghetti dinner that day beginning at 2 p.m. The dinner will include spaghetti, tossed salad, Italian bread and a dessert.
Registration for the fishing derby is due by Friday, Feb. 13. The cost is $15 for adults and $10 for children younger than 16 or senior citizens ages 65 and older. The cost includes dinner.
For more information, call club president Joseph Basto, 846-3281, or the Weathercock Pub at 846-7990.
Saturday, Feb. 21
• The Fourth Annual Lake George Ice Fishing Contest will be held from 5:30 a.m to 3 p.m. at Veteran's Park in Bolton Landing. The cost is $20.
Register on-line or at local bait and tackle shops. There will be $2,500 in cash prizes for four categories of fish. Proceeds benefit the Glens Falls Kiwanis Foundation, Scholarship Program.
For further information call the Bolton Landing Chamber of Commerce 518-644-6831 Website Lake George Ice Fishing.org, operational mid-January 2009
• The Sacandaga Boating Club will host its annual ice fishing contest on the Sacandaga Reservoir. The entry fee is $15 before Feb. 20, $18 the day of with children under 12 free with a participating adult.
A total of $1,500 will be dolled out in four fish categories. Register at local bait stores or on the Web at www.gslff.org. Call Randy Gardinier at 843-6329 or Jack Smith at 863-1062 for more information.
• The Speculator - Lake Pleasant - Piseco Fish & Game Club's 7th annual Lake Pleasant Ice Fishing Contest will take place from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Registration takes place at the Inn at Speculator from 5-9 p.m. on Feb. 20 or from 5 a.m. - 9 a.m. the morning of the event.
The total payout is $1,500 in five fish categories. The cost is $20 in advance, or $2,500 the day of the event. Advance registrations may be mailed to SLPP Fish & Game, Box 271, Speculator, NY 12164. Call 548-3811, 548-5283 or 548-3029 for more information or visit www.slpp-fishgame.org.
Saturday, Feb. 21 - Sunday, Feb. 22
• YMCA Camp Chingachgook on Lake George is hosting its 8th annual Ice Fishing Derby on Lake George. Thee will be more than $500 in prizes, a bonfire, hot chowder, and drinks available.
The cost is $8 per day for adults or $15 for both days. Children under 12 pay $5 per day or $8 for both days. Proceeds benefit the YMCA Reach Out for Youth campaign to provide scholarships for area children to attend summer camp. For more information, call 656-9462 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Saturday, Feb. 28 - Sunday, March 1
• The Hague and Ticonderoga Chamber of Commerce will co-sponsor the Hague Fish & Game Club's Northern Lake George 50th Anniversary Ice Fishing Tournament.
With an anticipated registrations of 300 contestant plus, the prize pool will include more than $3,000 in cash and merchandise with four fish categories in both adult and junior divisions.
An added bonus will be immediate weigh-in at Clubhouse with the Lake Services provided by the Hague Sno-Goers.
Registration will be a the Hague Beach Visitor Center, at the junction of Rte 8 and Rte 9, on both mornings starting at 6 a.m. The Adult fee is $10 and juniors, 16 and under, register for free. The awards ceremony will be at The Clubhouse, 488 West Hague Rd on Sunday at 4 p.m. Blind Prize drawings will also be drawn hourly both days.
Call Steve Ramant at 543-6542 for more information.
Sunday, March 1
• The Long Lake Fish and Game Club will host a fund day for teams of an adult fishing with a child 15 and under on either Long Lake, Lake Eaton, Forked Lake or South Pond.
Registration will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at the Long Lake Town Hall Nutrition Site. Weigh-in is at 3 pm.
Prizes will be given for 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th place fish in three categories; Pike, Trout (includes Lake Trout and Land Locked Salmon) and perch. There is no entry fee. The Long Lake Fish and Game Club will have a group fishing area off the spill way of Jennings Park Pond. Those who are unable to go fishing with a child should check with a fish and game member.
Saturday, March 7 - Sunday, March 8
• The 17th annual Schroon Lake Fishing Derby will begin at daylight March 7 and continue until 4 p.m. March 8.
Tickets for pre-registration are $120 through Sunday, March 1 and $12 thereafter. Cash prizes will be dolled out for the heaviest fish in three categories - trout, salmon and northern pike as well as a prize for heaviest pickerel and perch.
Because of the significant turnout for this popular contest, lake trout and pike of less than 24 inches will not be accepted for entry. Seventy five percent of all monies collected will be returned equally as prize money.
Marked vehicles will be on the lake to pickup fish for weigh-in at the fish and game club. A spaghetti dinner will be served at the club starting at 5 p.m. Saturday for $7.
Pre-register by mail prior to March 2 to Bunny Suprenant, PO Box 203, Schroon Lake, NY 12870. Mail-in entries may be picked up at Flanagans Pub the evening of March 6 and tickets will be available at the fish and game until March 8. Anglers do not have to sign in at the clubhouse prior to fishing.
For more information, call Suprenant at 532-7685.
• The Saranac Lake Fish and Game Club will host the 25th annual Colby Classic Ice Fishing Derby on Saturday and Sunday, March 7 and 8, at Lake Colby in the village of Saranac Lake.
The derby starts at 7 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m. each day.
Contestants can register for the derby at the Blue Line Sports Shop in Saranac Lake or on derby days at the Lake Colby beach house across from the Adirondack Medical Center on Route 86. Derby Day registration begins at 6:45 a.m. each day.
The registration fee is $7 per adult per day or $10 per adult for both days. Youths under 16 years of age can register for $3 per day of $5 for both days.
Contestants will be eligible to win prizes in the trout, salmon, perch and northern pike categories with separate prizes awarded to adults and youths. The tournament grand prize is a charter fishing trip for two people with Fish Doctor Charters of Mexico, NY.
Fifteen tagged fish will be stocked in Lake Colby prior to the derby courtesy of the NYSDEC-Lake Clear fish hatchery. A $100 prize will be awarded to any lucky fisherman who catches a tagged fish during the derby.
Bait will be available at the Blue Line Sports Shop and the River Road Bair Shop during the event. For further information contact Derby Chairman Cecilia Martin at 201-4009 or co-chairman Patrick Farrell at 518-891-3319.
John Gereau is managing editor of Denton Publications. He can be reached at email@example.com