It’s close to that time of year when ice fishing enthusiasts get ready to trek to area ponds and lakes looking for that special catch. Iowa Department of Natural Resources Conservation Office Paul Kay says when approaching the water, to never travel alone and carry a rope with you in case you should happen to fall in. He recommends the ice being three inches thick before fishing and at least four inches thick before using any type of vehicle on the frozen water. Kay says all game fish will bite in the winter and the appropriate restrictions apply throughout the winter season. All fishing licenses expire January 10 and fines vary if you should get caught with an expired license. If you have any questions about the regulations, contact your local Department of Natural Resources office.