ALBERTON -- There will be trout fishing through the ice in ponds in Alberton and Stratford this weekend.
The weekend fishery scheduled for Wellington, though, has been delayed a week due to deteriorating ice conditions there.
Volunteers with the P.E.I. Bait Fishers Group, the organization that is conducting the pilot ice fishing experience, rechecked the ice on the three ponds on Thursday and determined there is sufficient ice in the Alberton and Stratford ponds to safely support the upwards to 75 participants per day this Saturday and Sunday. Participants must register in advance and then get slotted in to fish. There’s a limit of three trout per fisherman. The ponds were stocked for the occasion last November.
When ice depth was measured on the Wellington pond last weekend there were spots with 30 inches of ice. However, there were spots that had 18 to 20 inches of ice last weekend that was open water on Wednesday, Bait Fishers Group president Bill Warren reported Thursday.
“This warm weather, whenever it’s like seven or eight degrees and 80 km wind, it doesn’t take long to cut ice,” Warren said in explaining the drastic change in ice conditions.
The Bait Fishers’ Group was planning to make a final decision on Friday, but were able to make the weekend determination following Thursday’s measurements. A week of mild weather had reduced the ice thickness but volunteers said there is still plenty of ice on the Alberton and Stratford ponds for this weekend’s schedule to proceed.
The P.E.I. Bait Fishers had scheduled pilot winter fishing for the weekends of January 18 and 19, February 1 and 2, 8 and 9, and 22 and 23.
The first weekend for Wellington participants will now be the weekend of January 25 and 26. Warren said the registration fee Wellington fishermen paid for this weekend is redeemable next weekend.
The fishery in Alberton this weekend is being conducted in conjunction with the Up West Winterfest, and there are participants registered for the unique experience from Summerside to North Cape.