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Jeff Kelm Selected for 2013 World Ice Fishing Team

Jeff Kelm, son of Mike and Barb Kelm, Quiet Springs Fish Farm, Makes US Team

Wausau-area eager for World Ice Fishing Championships

Wausau Daily Herald-Wisconsin Outdoor Fun  

Jeff Kelm has thought about ice fishing since most lakes thawed in March.

He talked about groundbait and water oxygen levels during the heat of the summer. He ran on an elliptical and tried to control his breathing this fall while thinking about jigging on an ice-crusted lake.

Yes, he’s passionate about ice fishing, but it’s more than that. He wants to be the best in the world.

Kelm is preparing for the biggest event in the sport of ice fishing — the 2013 World Ice Fishing Championships in February.

The weeklong event, Feb. 10 to 17 at the Big Eau Pleine Reservoir outside of Mosinee, will attract about 100 of the best ice fishermen from nearly a dozen countries. Wausau-area tourism officials see the event as a chance to fill hotel rooms and restaurants, and keep sporting goods stores busy, in addition to giving the area some international attention.

Kelm, 29, of Sheboygan is one of 10 men who made the U.S. team in March after a three-day competition on the Big Eau Pleine. Kelm competed in the world championships in 2012 in Kazakhstan and hopes to use his past experience to help buoy the team to a world championship.

“This isn’t a bunch of guys drinking beer waiting for a tip-up flag to pop up,” Kelm said. “This is competitive.”

The world championship is a two-day competition with individual and team champions determined by the weight of panfish and roughfish caught. Fishermen from Canada, Finland, Sweden, Poland, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Russia and other countries will arrive a week prior to fish on the reservoir to learn about the fish habitat and bait preferences.

 

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