Lake Cildir hosts ice fishers, offering them source of income amid freezing cold
Eskimo-style ice fishing has continued this year to be an outdoor activity as well as a source of income in eastern Turkey as one of the largest lakes in the country is frozen amid harsh winter conditions.
Lake Cildir, the second largest lake in Eastern Anatolia, located on the Kars-Ardahan border has been attracting fishers from the Akcakale village every winter when it is frozen.
Fishers get prepared in the early hours of the day and walk on the frozen lake until they reach the area they will fish and throw their nets into the water after opening a hole on the lake.
Cinar Kilic, a fisherwoman, came to Lake Cildir with her husband Turhan and their 7-year-old daughter Tuba to conduct the first ice fishing of the season.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Kilic said they have been fishing for years as a family.
“We earn our living by fishing. We used to sell [fish] at our restaurant, but due to the pandemic now we make sales by taking orders,” she said.
Mustafa Ugur Ozerden, the Arpacay district governor in Kars province, told Anadolu Agency that ice fishing is a “very different” occupation.
Taking a moment to watch the fishers at the lake while monitoring COVID-19 measures, Ozerden said that due to its location, the lake is of great importance for the region’s tourism.
“Lake Cildir offers different beauties to our people both in winter and summer,” he said, adding that there are many people earning their bread from the ice.
“It is a very different and impressive job. They do it fondly. Therefore, they both make gains and contribute to the promotion of our region,” Ozerden said.