Pout O Rama 2017



I left the Twin Cities with an air temp of 4, and as I traveled North to the burbot grounds on a frozen Lake Superior tributary, the temp bottomed out at zero.  My plan was to meet a few roughfish.com members out on the ice and try for burbot.  This excursion has become a ritual of sorts for some of us.  It is good medicine for a Minnesota Winter.


As always, you can click on my photos to embiggen.


Upon my arrival, I found Eric Kol on the ice with a nice pile of pout already.  He had been there for a few hours and had found steady action, landing 4.



burbot on ice

His biggest was 31.5", a long skinny male.

burbot ice fishing


After greetings all around, I started fishing.  Members present included Moose, Fishaholicsanonymous, Eric Kol, Roughfish29, Sam, Jason E, Bubbajo and his buddy, Vanner and his 2 sons, and Goldenfishberg and GeluNumber1.  

My Vexilar had issues, so I just started pounding bottom with a buckshot spoon tipped with shiner parts.  Poutnip.  Not ten minutes went by and I had a fish!  



I cracked a Duluth-area brew in celebration, but it froze almost instantly.  One good sip was all I got, then Otto clened up the slush.

 Oh yeah, Otto the crazy ice fishing dog met us out there once again, this dog has been our friend out there for like 9 years - 



The shadows started getting longer as afternoon waned.




It was great to see Bubbajoe, and I took this photo of his shack at prime time.  He had caught 2 by the time I left, one nice female.


Toward dusk, a good amount of eelpout were landed. Both of my cameras froze solid and would not work.  I will let the appropriate parties add their personal accounts, but here's a  teaser - 



I leave you with a burbotsicle courtesy of Eric Kol - 



Great to see all of you out there today, on a cold cold day.






Species List: 


D.T.'s picture

Sorry I missed it this year. You all have got some big kahunas. Well all except one...lol.

Yesterday was the day we had set aside to do grinding, stuffing, and smoking. We did ring bologna, and summer sausage. LOTS of it.So there was no way I coulda made it to the sexy Gooseneck bend of that great river.  Previous years were penthouse and pit. Glad this year was a good one. Cool to see Otto was there again. Me and Doc gave him some lovin back in June when we were there.

Crazy memory of the Pout-O-Rama one year.....the zipper opened on the fish house and a crazy eyed Dutchman I call Jigs peeks his head in. All like wussup? That was such a sooper cool surprise. Real jaw dropper.

I'm glad that all who went had fun, caught pout,  and am fellin kinda bummed I couldn't make it..


FP4LifesDad's picture

Thanks for sharing sounds like a great trip!  We ventured south to Iowa for yellows instead, it was considerably warmer then home but the wind was wicked bad and there is ZERO snow on the ice.  Glad to see some great lota action still need to catch some of those wily fellas ourselves.  Good fishing gang stay safe.

Jason E.'s picture

I ended up with zero.  Too much time talking, not enough time jigging!  It was great to see folks once again, even if it was colder than dry ice out there.

Goldenfishberg's picture

GeluNumber1 and myself took off from White Bear Lake around 4pm Friday night with my suburban so crammed full of ice fishing gear I couldn't see out the back window (but what else is new) We were only about 30 minutes behind Moose and Fishaholicsannoymous and the plan was to meet up at the Super 8 motel in Duluth by Perkins. RF29 and Sam were to be up there Friday night as well and we all made plans to hit gooseneck bend together that evening. The air temp was something like -8 that night but the wind was light and the scent of Burbot, intrigue and pickled northern was in the air. I don't even remember being cold, I was just too damn excited. GeluNumber1 and I discussed burbot fishing and lifers the entire drive up and we were both chompin’ at the bit to get our lines in the water as this would be mine and Gelu#1’s first pout-o-rama.


Friday night around 8pm we found ourselves at Gooseneck bend, where we found Big RF29 and Sam out on the river already. They told us the bite was slow and they hadn’t iced a pout yet but hell that didn’t seem to deter any of us or damper any of our spirits. No ‘pouts were iced that night but I wasn’t poutin’ about it. I think we got off the river around 1:30 am that night, shot back to the hotel and drifted off to sleep dreaming of big fat lawyers laying on the ice.


Saturday morning GeluNumber1 and myself met my buddy on Fish lake Reservoir in Duluth for a little crack of dawn crappie fishing before we went back to the St. Louis.We got back to gooseneck bend to find some friendly familiar faces already on the ice. It was friggin sweet to see Kol had 3 beautiful burbot on the ice already! After setting up my portable we cracked a few jars of pickled northern, passed around the snowshoe grog and started jigging. It wasn't too long before a nice suspended mark showed up on my locator and I only missed the first two bites before my rod was bent with the weight of a solid burbot.  


I made the brilliant decision to leave my digital camera in my truck overnight which provided to be an annoying mistake because it didn't work until about 4 hours after I got back to White Bear.

At least we were able to snap a few cell phone pics.



Not long after I Iced a pout I stepped outside to chat with Kol and Andy, when i heard shouting from the portable. GeluNumber1 hooked into his lifer burbot and iced it before I could even say “melted butter” Nothing like seeing someone catch a lifer through the ice, It is a rare opportunity. I had prior engagements Saturday that I needed to get to so we had to leave late in the afternoon but it was one hell of a great time. It was awesome to see everyone, and braving the chilly temps was that much easier with a group of excellent fisherman and true gentleman. *Devin I will let you post your own photos so I don’t spoil the surprise*


Ya just Can't catch um from the couch.

roughfish29's picture

Man what a great time that was. Thanks to Andy for hosting, Otto for moral support and Goldberg for the Pickled Pike and Snowshoe grog.

Here's a nice 25 inch male that Sam caught.

I only caught two fish but I covered both ends of the spectrum

And this is my new personal best Burbot at 32.5 inches and chubby as all get out

Thanks for the good times guys can't wait until next year!

Eric Kol's picture

I had all intentions of fishing gooseneck at sunup and left the cities at 4:30 am in order to do so. I stopped halfway up for donuts and gas and fell asleep in the Tobies parking lot for almost two hours. So, I got there 9ish and set up. Otto greeted me right off. It was well below zero and windy, so the camera really did not come out much. I drilled about 15-20 holes until I marked a fish or two and then pretty much just set up and camped out in the same place for the rest of the day. Fishing was steady but slow paced throught the day. Moose and fishaholics were the next to come. "I love burbot" was drawn into the road grime on the rear windshield of their van and man were they eager to hit the ice.
Everyone else straggled in thoughout the afternoon.There were hearty welcomes and it was great to catch up with folks, some of whom I have not seen in a couple of years. It was very laid back. Most folks drilled a couple of holes, set-up on them and did not move from them. Andy was in full beast mode and fished without a shack or heater for the whole session, landing at least one decent pout and getting strikes from several more. Since his electronics were on the fritz, he showed us all that simple tactics and pounding the bottom would produce just as well. You just have to have faith in your set up and your prior experiences with the target quarry and not to get worked up over it.
it was good to see old friends and meet a couple of new folks too. Hope to catch ya all on the bank sometime in the not too distant future.
first pout on the ice

Carpy Diem!

Graceclaw's picture

Wow, this post was painful to read. I would have made it if there was room in a house for me!

Glad you guy really nailed them this year. Anyone want to go back up and have an open seat/shelter spot, hit me up. I need my lifer, and need to get up to 50 ice hours this year!!!

2018 Goals:
Quillback (Check)
10#+ Flathead Catfish
5 New Standard Species (Current Count: 6 - Check)

Aquaholic's picture

Awesome pout Ben! Bummed as well I couldn't make it but hope to try this weekend. I probably will have an open seat in the shack for you graceclaw 

andy's picture

With a bunch of male burbot caught and just 2 big females, I would say the peak of the run is just starting.  It will probably peak this week, and you will have a chance at a big fat hen burb next weekend!

Bubbajoe's picture

It dosen't seem like ice fishing season really starts until Pout rally.  It was also amazing to put the Pout drought of 2016 behind me! It was awesome to see everyone as always ways, and here's to crossing lines in the near future!