Well, I finally got to do a little ice fishing for some big yellow perch out in western Maryland at Deep Creek Lake. I stayed with my friend Ron and we fished 2 1/2 days on the lake and were joined the last half-day with our buddy Dan. I wish I could tell you that we murdered them, but the truth is that we worked very hard for a total of 58 yellow perch and one walleye during that time frame.
As of Jan 1, 2010, the Maryland DNR has imposed a 10 perch daily limit per angler at Deep Creek and this may very likely maintain the trophy perch fishery at this mountain top powerhouse for a long time. Although not heavily ice fished, the lake does offer consistant opts for quality ice fishing in the mild Mid-Atlantic region.
We jigged up the majority of our fish from 18 to 22 feet of water with Rapala Ice Jigging Raps in W3 and W5 in gold or silver tipped with maggots. Most fish were 6 to 18 inches off the bottom and some were 'pushed' into striking. We kept a sharp eye on our wire strike indicators as total concentration was in order for seeing the sometimes slightest movement of a strike.
Some of our fish were big, or at least what I would call big...of the 58 we had 40 jumbos that went 12 inches or better and a pair of 'trophy' perch that were 14 1/2 inches and approached 2 pounds. About half of our fish were 13 inches or better. Just a great size for these great tasting panfish!
Hope to get back up there again and maybe catch some more takers later on in the ice season. The ice was 10 in and the weather was mild with 40 F temps and little wind. All in all....a great trip!