To Wait on Pale Ice

Day 2

The Adventure Series is a collection of outdoor experiences, highlighting stories about people with a shared appreciation for wildlife and wild places. These stories reach across cultural and political boundaries, connecting all walks of life and geographies. In pursuit of broadening our collective understanding, TU is partnering with the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Arctic Beringia Region this week to take you into the heart of interior Alaska. Follow along each day this week as we bring you the series, “To Wait on Pale Ice,” photographed and written by Woodruff Laputka of the WCS. You can read the first installment here.

We arrived at half past noon, parking on a side street across from the access point to the ice. The shade in which we parked was cold, encouraging additional layers and a parka indicative of spring in interior Alaska.

We unhooked the snow machines and K lead the way to meet O, who’s truck could be seen in the distance. Lake Harding yawned before us like a
vast white mirror, scarred by snow machine tracks and old fishing shack sites, while incalculable snow dunes, inches tall and ever shifting, cast shadows in the overwhelming sunlight. Summer homes and cabins dotted the shore, stretching around for miles toward a horizon of trees and
rolling hills.

Even with the presence of these homes, Harding Lake felt wild and remote, like they’d all been abandoned.

O had already drilled his first hole and was managing a small fishing
pole with a square black depth and fish finder called a Humminbird in front of him.

“Without it, ice fishing here is almost impossible,” he divulged. He then took his auger and drilled a fresh hole for each of us.

Stay tuned for Day 3.

By Trout Unlimited Staff.