Find a pocket of open water and you’re in business. Sean Hammock of Big Sean's Outfitting, who hunts and guides the St. Joseph River in northern Indiana, widens the hole until the ice will support 50 to 100 rester and sleeper goose decoys. Ducks will also work the spread.
You can still achieve good visibility with a small spread if you add a little motion. Tim Herald, host of "The Zone TV" on the Sportsman Channel, places his spread at the edge of a riffle and adds two spinning-wing decoys.
Before the freeze, visibility is key. Even if Field Hudnall, Avery pro staffer and founder of Field Proven Calls, is duck hunting, his favorite spread (see sidebar, above) consists of 90 to 120 floating and full-body geese plus a dozen ducks.
Captain Bob Wetherald, pro staffer for Benelli and Final Approach, uses two gang-rigged lines of bluebill decoys to form his V-shaped spread. The “V” points toward the current. A sandbar is an ideal location.