среда, 27 января 2010 г.

Ice fishing in the Sea of Okhotsk near Magadan

The winter in Magadan is not severe, but long - it lasts for 7 months.  Ice fishing in fresh water and in the Sea of Okhotsk is a passion for many local fishermen.  Here you can see the hichhikers in heavy winter clothes & boots, which try to catch a ride to the fishing places far from the banks of the Gertnera Bay near Magadan.  Sometime the best fishing is found 10-15 km by ice-road. 

This lone, 12 m tall cliff in the sea is called "Monk".  The fish is often biting on the depths of 12-18 meters around the cliff. The locals call this "fishing by the monk".

After a blizard there is plenty of wet snow on the ice.  The 2-wheel drive cars easily get stuck.  This driver is hurriedly working with a shovel - others guys are already catching fish!

Two main quarries of ice-fishermen in the Sea of Okhotsk - suffron cod (left) and rainbow smelt. 

My ice-fishing rod is 70-75 cm long and has wire hooks, on which I wrap the line when lifting the fish to the ice.  This allows to pull out 20-25 meter long lines without taking off heavy fur mittens.  The fish is caught with a series of little hooks baited with narrow strips of condom.  The best colors of these "flies" (marine plancton imitations) are pink and white.

When the fishermen see somebody catching fish, they come and drive to the area with a school of fish from all directions.  In a quarter of an hour lucky fisherman could be surrounded by hunreds of his collegues. 

Pacific cod in winter is caught mostly with big lures close to the bank

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