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Warm temperatures delay ice fishing season on Lake Simcoe

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There are only 45 days until ice fishing huts have to come off the ice.

The unseasonably warm temperatures have caused a delay in the ice fishing season throughout some parts of the region.

Many people are still waiting to head out on some parts of Lake Simcoe, while some have been out for weeks in other areas.

Local ice fishers say Cooks Bay is usually one of the first sections to freeze over because of the shallow water. On Monday, it was busy with ice fishers looking for a big catch.

Mike Fava, an operator with Rippin Lips Outdoors in Lefroy, says his huts are still on shore. However, he was out on the lake last year by January 18th.

"Right now, what we're finding is it's pretty inconsistent. Still some spots are three inches, other spots are four to five inches, so it's been pretty difficult at the moment," says Fava. He hopes to be out this weekend with his huts.

In Big Bay Point, Don Luchkiw, with Bear Point Fish Hut Rentals, cleared a path to the lake in anticipation of getting his huts out on Monday. He says it's later than normal, but only by a week or two. Luchkiw expects things to get going quickly, especially with American visitors.

"About a quester of our business, our guys that come up from the States Michigan, Pennsylvania you know just that side of the border they want to come down for a day and smash some lakers and whiteys. We've got them covered," says Luchkiw.

He adds he's been getting a lot of calls, especially for the overnight sleeper hut rentals.

Ice fisher Debbie Martin says Cucumberland Beach has up to 11 inches of ice.

However, people are being reminded that the ice is still very inconsistent in many areas. Ice fishers are encouraged to always have the proper gear and check with the nearest ice hut operator before venturing out.

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