HALFWAY HOME. With the turn of the calendar to February, we’re not out of the woods, but we’re partly there in a winter which has spared much of its wrath in the first half. Now we wait for tomorrow and old Punxsutawney Phil and his prognosticating pals to let us know what’s coming for the rest of the season. On the real, we look at where the DEO WSI stands and how this winter stacks up in today’s Three Things.
(Featured Photo: Ole the lab enjoys some time in the remaining snow. Simonson Photo)
WEATHER (Bismarck Forecast):
Today: 2/1 – Six of one, half a dozen of the other. Hi 6, Lo -6, Winds NW@7
Tomorrow: 2/2 – Lots of twos. Hi 22, Lo 2. Winds L&V.
SOLUNAR (Bismarck Times):
Sunrise: 8:06AM Sunset: 5:47PM
Moonrise: 7:30PM Moonset 8:54AM
Overhead: 1:39AM Underfoot: 2:08PM
Moon Phase: Waning Gibbous (99% Full)
EDGE HOUR: 8:30 – 9:30AM. Stretch your early-light fishing trip out a bit in today’s Edge Hour to catch moonset and a bump in the bite.
WHAT’S THAT WSI? Halfway through winter, the DEO Winter Severity Index (WSI) stands at a super low 22 points out of a possible 124. All 22 points come from cold temperatures (days hitting zero or lower) and with virtually no snow cover through winter’s first half, no points have been assessed for ground accumulations over 12 inches. Under our little armchair WSI equation, the season is on track to be mild (25 or less right now or 50 at end of March). The MRCC shows a similar output, with this winter in the bottom third historically in terms of severity. Good news for ND wildlife thus far!
HIYA CHUBS. The Salmo Chubby Darter has dominated the on-ice crankbait market for about 16 years now. A combination of jigging bait and vibrating blade bait in one chunky package, the Polish produced ripping bait has been responsible for changing the way vertical jigging for predator fish happens in winter. Available in three sizes for big crappies on up to big pike and walleyes, there’s a Chubby Darter in a number of effective colors for any application.
DA DIP. A cold bias sets up for the next 7 days before long range models show a warming trend into the following weekend. Stay tuned and don’t trust the numbers until they’re within three days, but this winter continues to look more and more survivable with each passing day, and only an inch or two of snow forecast for Saturday.