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Tricks for finding the sunken course next spring


david_quail
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In Canada ... So next weekend will take the buoys off and watch the course sink .Sad face.

Usually in the spring we spend a few hours trolling, anchor on bottom, trying to catch us a mainline rather than a whopper. As fun as that is with the ski buds and a few pops, I'm Iooking to expedite the process.

What about this? .. I have a 1/16th stainless steel line attached to the mainline and anchored the other end in front of our cabin in a spot I can easily find in the spring (about 4 feet of water). From there I can trace back to the main line.

Question ...

Is there a better solution? How accurate can GPS be? Is there an app for that?

Is 4 feet of depth enough? I'm kind of worried about the ice grabbing my trace line and depositing the course on the other side of the lake .

Other ideas?

 

Where oh where art thou my sunken course?

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For GPS I map a line right down the mainline (you may be doing this already). Some other skiers just go to a point and search radially, but if you map the mainline then you can start deliberately on one side of the mainline and then just move cross-course until you snag it- seems way faster than going to a point and trying to search in circles from there.

 

A good idea that another skier had was to fill a couple of jugs approx 80% with water and sink them on the same section of mainline- this lifts the mainline off of the bottom in that section and makes it easier to snag.

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We do the same thing and let it sink as deep as 80'. My friend made a giant treble hook out of rebar that we troll the bottom with. Sometimes it takes a few passes but we always find it. The last 3" of the tips of each hook are bent outward. I don't know how to post a pic on here but pm me and I could text you a pic. It really works well.
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Put a snap hook on a length of wire/ rope, attach hook to course mainline at one end before you sink it.

When sunk, tie line end off to your main anchor buoy.

 

Come spring retrieve the hook/line end at surface buoy and pull your main course line up. Attach buoys in sequence as you slide the hook along mainline and bring it to surface. Unhook and re attach again on other side of bars/ diamonds / joints or tensioning loops as required.

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our courses are between 4' and 10' deep. we take a photo of the mapped courses screen from the Perfect Pass boats, copy the coordinates into a smart phone. this gets us close. We also install 4"-6" pieces of bright coloured pool noodles on the clip where we remove / install the bungee and buoy. works great.
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We put a couple of buoys on each end of the course and they always seem to survive the winter. This has been going on for at least 15 years if not longer with no major damage to the course. @Than_Bogan or @rayn can probably comment more as they are more involved in the management of our courses than I am.
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If it's sitting on the lake bottom in 4' of water, should be fine. If it's floating 4' below the surface, that might be cutting it a little bit close depending on the lake. I've never seen a lake in Northern WI freeze that far down but I know in far northern MN, in really bad winters there can be more than 4' of ice.
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I have had many buoys that didn’t survive the winter. One year the 2 ball arm ended up on the same side as the 1/3. Sink it all to the bottom and make a big treble hook out of re bar. My 3 hooks are about 10” long. Throw out the hook and drag it slowly by hand acrosss the mainline. 1 or 2 attempt and your off and running
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We run stainless cable from the pregates to about 3 feet from the shoreline. It’s super easy to snap our line with a buoy on it and pull up the following season and we knock off the pregates first pull.

 

We have had the hook fail when using a snap hook and now use the chain connector type that screws on and locks.

 

When that happens we just drag an anchor along until we snag the cable.

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We tie a line to shore cuz we are that close. My brother lets his sink and ties a number of buoys in a bunch to a line that goes down to the course, but the buoys are on a line length whereby they are submerged several feet. That spot is GPS marked. Come back in the spring, go to the GPS spot, find the bundle of balls, gaff them and bring up the mainline.
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