Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Cancel Anytime
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
Just $1.99per week for the first 24weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

Brian Seibel chops wood to heat the fishing shack his family rented for the night at Sylvan Lake, Alta., on Feb. 13, 2021.

Leah Hennel/The Globe and Mail

They call it the Golden Falcon. A beat up camper – from 1969, or maybe that’s just how the story goes – turned ice fishing shack. Scott Lachance and Andrew Taylor are inside, dri- no, fishing. The rig belongs to a friend.

“The whole trailer cost buddy a 40 pounder of Baileys and the stove, two flats of beer,” Mr. Lachance says. “Excellent trade.”

In photos: Father-daughter ice fishing on the Bay of Quinte a cherished tradition

The Golden Falcon is among the hundreds of ice fishing shacks set up on Sylvan Lake, just outside Red Deer, Alta. The Big Jig Ice Fishing Derby is on, but no one is catching anything but a buzz.

Story continues below advertisement

“I’m hoping for a door prize,” says Mr. Lachance, a Sylvan Lake local. The pair don’t even have rods in the holes; the ice is so thick their auger couldn’t drill deep enough to hit water.

Shawn Boers ice fishing in a shack called the Glamping Dome he and friends rented from Airbnb at Sylvan Lake.

Tyler Hastie, left, Jitka Chabarria, Jolie Chabarria and Thalia Chabarria, right, with her twins Luka and Khai, 3, in their ice fishing shack.

Brandon Bellman, Chenise Seibel and Kathy Seibel fish inside a fishing shack they rented for the night.

Laura Tucker, left, and Jen Leadley in the Glamping Dome shack they rented from Airbnb.

Scott Lachance, left, and Andrew Taylor visit in Bob Lachance's ice fishing shack.

The back of Mr. Lachance's ice fishing shack.

Leah Hennel/The Globe and Mail

Albertans have embraced fishing as a COVID-friendly activity. The province sold more than 324,000 resident fishing licences as of the end of January, up 30 per cent over the previous fiscal year, according to Jason Penner, a spokesman for Alberta Environment and Parks. Illegal activity around fishing may also be on the rise. Between April 1, 2020 and Feb. 11, 2021, officials received 907 public complaints, compared with 620 in the prior fiscal year, which stretches to March 31.

Fishing is free – no licence required – in Alberta on Family Day long weekend and around Canada Day. On Sylvan Lake, there is a mix of old-school ice fishing shacks to glamping setups. Jen Leadly is celebrating her 40th birthday with three friends in a pop-up dome with a plywood floor and wood stove they rented for the weekend. Outside, it is around -20 C. Inside, Shawn Boers is barefoot, in shorts and a Pippen jersey.

A Glamping Dome from Airbnb at Sylvan Lake.

Leah Hennel/The Globe and Mail

Ms. Leadly is an experienced ice fisher, but their fancy rental has her rethinking her game. “There’s no going back to the other shack,” she says. Laura Tucker, a newbie, is impressed with the amenities. Firewood, rods, bait, cots, all there ready for them.

“It is like an all-inclusive resort when the sun shines through the dome,” she says, with a tuque on.

Leah Hennel/The Globe and Mail

We have a weekly Western Canada newsletter written by our B.C. and Alberta bureau chiefs, providing a comprehensive package of the news you need to know about the region and its place in the issues facing Canada. Sign up today.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow the author of this article:

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies