This weekend is one of the weekends where anyone can fish without needing a fishing license.
No license is required Feb. 16 and 17 as part of New York's periodic annual "free fishing days."
The weather looks perfect if you want to try your hand at ice fishing, and local bait and tackle shops like Fish307 in Queensbury, Bob's Bait & Tackle in Corinth and The Crossroads in Chester can hook you up with the gear you need.
There are even some local trout streams that are legal to fish this time of year, if you feel like wetting a line in the stretch of the Batten Kill between the Vermont line and the Eagleville Bridge, the Schroon River in Warren County or Kayderosseras Creek in Saratoga County.
Fishing in winter takes some more effort, and safety precautions around ice and cold water, but it is the time of year where coldwater fish like trout and salmon are most accessible in many waters.
Live bait worked slowly is the best bet where allowed, but check the state rules first.
-- Don Lehman