Day 2 – Kringla and Fresh Trout


An angler sits atop a bucket waiting for a hungry trout to bite.

*** News Flash ***   Check out the link to the write-up of the George Reeves memorial event in Woolstock.  Here is the newspaper article.  If you look at the picture of people watching a Superman video, you’ll see the back of my head.


Hello and welcome!  Today was the second day of ice fishing in Fort Dodge, Iowa.  Unfortunately, I only caught one fish and it happened at a different location over 100 miles away from Fort Dodge… But it was a heck of an enjoyable day… starting with a treat for breakfast.

IMG_5318This morning I visited Lori’s Kringla & More in the town of Rockwell City.  In the last year I had placed a couple of Internet orders for their goodies to send to Sis.  We were so impressed with the quality that it was worth a diversion to stop and meet the makers of this tasty Norwegian sweet bread.

As blog readers know, kringla is a favorite treat I first encountered in southwest Wisconsin.  It was exciting to find some made in an Iowa bakery.   Lori is a purist about her baking and the quality really shows!  She uses real butter, eggs, buttermilk, sugar, real vanilla, sour cream, etc.  Nothing artificial goes into her baking – no corners are cut – unlike some of the commercially made products.

While other companies use machines to form the little “figure 8” shapes, Lori rolls hers by hand.   Hand rolling the dough in flour helps retain the moisture, keeping the kringla soft, according to Lori’s husband Brian.  As a kringla lover, I can say that hers is by far the best I’ve tried.

1_Brian and Lori

Brian and Lori Dale, owners

Here are Brian and Lori Dale.  They are every bit as much fun as their delightful Norwegian goodies are tasty.  We chatted for over an hour in the bakery.

Though known for her kringla, Lori’s business also makes the most beautiful cakes and pies as well as doing catering for numerous events.  The Dales even catered an Irish festival where they created dishes that make a person’s mouth water just hearing about them.  We discussed how good food can be when you add some Guinness to it; they call it “hooching it up”.

2_KringlaFrom Rockwell City it was back to the trout fishing pond.  Once again the fish weren’t biting but it didn’t matter.  None of the fisherman were catching anything so we all sat around and b.s.’d for a while.  I learned a lot about other places to fish and even about a lure that several agreed works the best for ice fishing.  It’s called a “Swedish Pimple”… Everyone agreed it was a perfect day just to be outside.

Eventually a decision was made to return to Cedar Rapids… empty handed.  But first I wanted to stop at an old stomping ground – Nort4_Trouth Prairie Lake in Cedar Falls (next to Waterloo).  I hadn’t fished this pond for twenty years.  power baitBack then the fish seemed to like the chartreuse colored Berkley Power Bait – a sparkling neon trout bait that floats.  It is a synthetic (plastic and resin) based dough.  You just roll a pea sized glob and cover the hook with it.


5_The HoleFrom what I could see, it looked like nobody was catching anything at North Prairie Lake; everyone else was using “wax worms” (wax moth larvae) and the trout were not biting.

I had switched to PowerBait, floating some about eight inches from the bottom.   Sure enough, three strong bites came in short order.  The first two fish spit out the hook.  The third fish had swallowed the hook and started dragging the small rod dangerously close to the hole.  From the intensity of the bite, this appeared to be a decent size fish.

5_ToiletLeaping off the seat (a 5 gallon pail with a “Luggable Loo” toilet 8_Ice Fishseat), I fell on my butt trying to get to the hole and save the pole from a watery grave.  Losing a fishing rod and a nice fish at the same time is a lesson a person doesn’t want to repeat.

The other lesson was to put the blade cover on the ice auger.  If I’d fallen the other direction, they’d still be stitching up the damage from the razor sharp blades.  :-/

So what does the geek on the right have in common with the camping toilet used to carry the fish poles and skimmer?  Both are occasionally full of crap….

For only catching one fish, it was still a fun trip and the friendly Iowans made it so.  From the welcoming folks at Woolstock to the kringla making team of Lori and Brian Dale, there are plenty of exciting and fun things to do all year around.  Thanks for riding along.

Take care.  Eat more kringla (preferably Lori’s).

Bradford, the “Van Trekker”


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About VanTrekker

I am a former vandweller in Eastern Iowa who, for several years (off and on), lived in a 2007 Chevy cargo van. I still travel around Iowa with my tortoise shell cat, Jennifer Stefanie. Our favorite place to explore is the Country Heritage Community, the four far northeastern counties of Iowa (Clayton, Winneshiek, Allamakee, and Fayette). Ride along as we fish in pristine trout streams, enjoy fine home cooked camping meals, and meet new people. It's all possible on a shoestring budget. Happy travels always! --- Brad, the "Van Trekker"

2 Responses to Day 2 – Kringla and Fresh Trout

  1. Jo says:

    Sure glad you didn’t land on the thing. Looks cold to me but you sure look like you enjoyed yourself.

    I have the luggable loo can’t beat it.

    • VanTrekker says:

      Thanks for the note Jo. I’ve only used the Luggable Loo a few times but it has always worked well. Based on advice from, I use a large “kitchen sized” plastic bag with a couple of pounds of kitty litter. Then it’s a matter of shaking the “doo doo” in the bag to have the litter neutralize the smell. For the price, you can’t beat the convenience.