Ice Fishing Off to Early Start

By Steph Machado

Published 12/15 2013 08:21PM

Updated 12/15 2013 08:42PM

HIGHGATE SPRINGS, Vt. - The freezing temperatures mean ice fishing season has come early.

A local ice fishing guide says normally they can't be out on the ice until late December or mid-January.

But people are already out on the lake.

The owner of Martin's General Store says the ice on Lake Champlain is 6 or 7 inches thick. But people still need to be careful about where they go on the lake.

"Some of the places to stay away from are the places where there is current or bridges, little creeks, river mouths. You want to be sure to give those a wide berth. Typically every year somebody seems to stray too close to those areas and ends up in trouble," says Gilbert Gagner, owner of Martin's General Store.

Gagner encourages people to buy "Picks of Life." It's a plastic gadget with sharp nails that can help pull you out of the water if you do break through the ice.

He says the "Picks of Life" only cost about $7 or 8.

And of course, don't forget a lifejacket out there.

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