Ice fishing enthusiasts unhappy with this mild winter

Only a few times during its 22 year history has the fishing derby been canceled

BELCHERTOWN, Mass. (WWLP) – Belchertown’s Lake Metacomet is in no shape to accommodate hundreds of ice fishing fans on Sunday.

Rather than cancel the event for the second straight year, organizer and President of the Belchertown Tri-Lakes Association Sean Gallagher has postponed the derby for two weeks to February 12th.

“We need a good 8 to 10 inches of ice to invite that 400 people out, and allow each of them to drill 5 holes apiece, so they can perforate that surface,” Gallagher said. “Safety is our number one concern.”

Only a few times during its 22 year history has the popular fishing derby on Lake Metacomet had to be canceled in the name of safety.

22News Storm Team Meteorologist Adam Strzempko is skeptical the needed 8 to 10 inches can form by February 12th; “We’ve already reached the coldest time of the year, and now temperatures are starting to inch up a little bit; so our chances of seeing some really cold temperatures are decreasing but it can happen.”

Still, it is possible said Strzempko, if early February 2016 repeats itself with nighttime temperatures dropping to about 10 degrees. Hundreds of Hampshire County ice fishing enthusiasts will be watching and waiting.

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