Maine officials are reminding people to double-check ice conditions with the arrival of Maine's winter fishing season. Yes, it has been cold, but Maine has not had enough sustained cold temperatures to create that much safe ice. So check the ice to make sure it's thick enough before you go out on it.

New Year's Day marks the traditional start of Maine's ice fishing season. However, some lakes and ponds in northern Maine opened to winter fishing in December, but most opened for the season on Jan. 1. There is also an interesting change for this year. Besides ice fishing, the state allows fishermen to cast their rods in open waters of lakes, ponds and streams during the winter months. That means late ice formation and early ice-out will no longer keep sportsmen from fishing. Enjoy!