Almost two weeks since last pic. We have had some very cold temps up there. Saw one day with 2 degrees. Ignore the temp in the pic. The camera is in a bear box and always gives really high temp readings when the sun has been shining on it. Two of the frozen over holes are from windmills and have not reopened for a while now. Pretty disappointed in the windmills. If they can't keep a hole open in these MUCH easier than average conditions what does that say about their success in a normal Winter. This year with the new camera angle and only ice on the pond it clearly illustrates how bad they struggled last year and how/why I failed.

Not to rehash too much but currently I have a 1HP pump running 6 hours per day. From these newer pics it looks like even the bigger pump is struggling to keep the holes open above the shallower diffusers. In the pic, the only holes open are from the quad and dual diffusers in ~20' and 16' of water. Granted, the aeration has only been running for 4 hours in this pic and will keep running for two more hours after this pic so maybe the holes open up more after the remaining run time. I could also possibly have a couple airlines freezing up some. I did not bury them super deep as I was assuming 3-4' of snow on top of them to help insulate by this point. Clearly we know what happens when we assume! My buddy put his boat upside down on top of the valve box to add a little more insulation but the wind already blew the boat off into the lake (if you look close you can see it in the pic lol).

Due to the unbelievable lack of snow, I have the chance to get the smaller 1/3HP pump swapped in for its' bigger 1HP brother. The smaller pump draws ~1/3 the power so could easily be run for longer than I am running the big pump. Smaller pump would also be easier on my batteries. Smaller pump COULD NOT run the quad diffuser.

Here are my primary questions at this point.
What will yield better results for Winter aeration for trout? Bigger pump moving much more water (especially the deeper water) for 6 hours or smaller pump running for longer duration, say 10 hours? Do I risk using the small pump and it having a problem breaking thru the ice/snow if we have a big storm drop 3 or 4 foot of snow and the snow try to bridge over the smaller holes? I think the snow would have a really hard time "overwhelming" the two BIG holes in this pic from the bigger pump & deeper water.

I'd love to hear some input.

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