Archived Home Page for January 2, 2019

The 2019 Ice Fishing Season

The 2019 Ice Fishing Season is Here!

The 2019 season has begun. It all started the morning of Thursday, December 27 when 4 huts were quietly moved on the ice. News of huts on the ice travelled fast and people scrambled to get their huts on the ice. By New Year's Eve, there were up to 100 huts on the ice.

The season may have begun but the ice is still at its minimum. For the time being, vehicle traffic in the ice village is limited to hut owners. Visitors to the ice village should park their cars on Trim Road or Jeanne D'Arc Boulevard and walk on to the ice.

At this time, no heavy vehicles should go on the ice and all other vehicles on the ice should stay on the established ice road.

The New Bait Shop

You may have noticed a large building on the ice and wondered why it didn't go through the ice. This is the new Oziles' Bait Shop and it's a floater. The base is made of compressed styrofoam covered by a layer of cement.

The new baitshop is parked near the entrance to the ice village for the winter but will be floated over to the large boat ramps in the spring. Bravo to the team at Oziles for constructing this marvel.

Big Al on the Chinese Travel Channel

Update on Big Al and PIIFA on The Chinese Travel Channel

You might remember that a Chinese documentary film crew were at Petrie Island last season. They were on the ice February 7, 2018 recording for an upcoming series of television documentaries for Chinese television on winter in Canada.

Beijing Yaoxing Communication is a television documentary production company from Beijing. They were filming for the TV Series “Traveler” and the online series "Be Wild". The Traveler television series broadcasts on the Chinese version of the Travel Channel; Be Wild is an online video series following concepts of natural wonders, the outdoors, gourmet segments, festivals, and indoor activities.

The crew's 14-day filming itinerary started with 3 days in Niagara Falls, then moved on to the Toronto area, Blue Mountain and finished up with 3 days in the Ottawa area. The Petrie Island segment was hosted by Big Al on their second day in the Ottawa area.

At the time, they told us that the Traveler series gets up to 700 million viewers for each new broadcast and the series on Canada will be divided into three 25-minutes broadcasts. Great, we thought, PIIFA has been featured on every type of media in Canada but now Chinese National Television?

After they left, we thought it would be next to impossible to ever see any of these programs because they were filmed exclusively for television is China.

Several months ago, we started an extensive search all over the net, on legal platforms and others not so legal and came up blank.

Several weeks ago, it was Big Al himself who came up with a link to a Chinese website with a feature article on ice fishing in Canada. It was the feature on Petrie Island from the film crew that visited last February. As expected, the website is entirely in Chinese.

Cool seeing Big and PIIFA featured on a Chinese website bit still no luck finding the three 25-minutes video broadcasts for the Chinese Travel Channel's TV Series “Traveler.

Check out the feature but you will need an app to translate the website into English.

2019 PIIFA Ice Fishing Derby at Petrie Island, Ontario

The 2019 PIIFA Ice Fishing Derby

The 2019 Petrie Island Ice Fishermen's Association Derby is scheduled to take place on Saturday, February 16, 2019 on Baitshop Bay at Petrie Island, Ontario.

This is an invitational event organized exclusively for the hut owners of Petrie Island, their invited guests and the hut renters of the Oziles’ Marina and Bait Shop. This event is coordinated with Ontario’s Family Fishing Week-end and Ontario Outdoors cards and fishing permits are not required to participate.


Registration for the derby is at the Beaudoin/Tessier hut. The Beaudoin/Tessier is parked on the south road of the bay and has a camo trailer parked close by.

Cost to pre-register for the event is $20.00 for adults and $10.00 for children aged 16 and under. Pre-registration begins Friday, February 8, 2019 at noon and ends Friday, February 15, 2019 at midnight. Cost to register on the day of the event is $25.00 for adults and $10.00 for children aged 16 and under. Registration closes when the event begins.

Complete Details

Historical Ice Thickness Data in Baitshop Bay

It's a page on the PIIFA website that goes largely unnoticed: The archive for ice thickness and ice conditions in Baitshop Bay throughout the years. Yes, we archive almost everything published on the website! The data page is linked up on one of our most popular pages: the ice conditions page. The page shows data collected and submitted by PIIFA members going back 15 years and the beginning of PIIFA.

Our 15-year data compilation shows the average yearly thickness in Baitshop Bay which generally ranges between 20 and 30 inches. Data also shows ice conditions and weather at the time.

Digging deeper into the data shows approximately when each ice fishing season began and how long it lasted, although no season is ever the same. The last few seasons have been very average beginning the first week in January although some say they ended prematurely.

Digging even deeper into the data, we also see some obvious anomalies. The winter of 2007 was slow to start, and the ice fishing season only began at the beginning of February, leaving us with just five week-ends on the ice. On the other end of the spectrum, the 2014 ice fishing began earlier than usual and went right up until March 15, the last day shacks can legally be on the ice.

If you are a geek, into stats, or just want to know the history of ice conditions at Petrie Island, go check it out!

The Ice Conditons Archive

Popular Pages

Some of the most popular pages on!
Rent an OC Transpo Bus Shelter

Rent an Ice Hut

Rent a converted OC Transpo bus shelter for a day of ice fishing.

Petrie 360

Petrie 360

Our annual 360 degree photo of the ice village at Petrie Island

The Ice Huts of Petrie Island

The Ice Hut Archive

Our most recent archive of the ice huts and shacks of Petrie Island.

PIIFA Kids Zone

PIIFA Kids Zone

Fun, puzzles, coloring and games for the kids of PIIFA.

The PIIFA Archives

Photos and Videos from the early days of PIIFA.

The Photo of the Week

Some of the best photos submitted by you!
More Photos in The Angler's Gallery