Your fishing trips should not come to an end just because the lake froze over. Ice fishing is a sport with its own vibe, which for many if just as good, if not better, than fishing off a boat. And while to each their own, I would encourage you to try all facets of the fishing world. Ice fishing is often overlooked due to it requiring a slightly different approach than regular angling. A lot of it has to do with gear. Ice fishing gear can be hard to navigate since the choice is endless and continuously increasing. Improving technology is constantly adding new tools, but the good news is that the essentials always remain the same.
Beginners often misjudge just how cold ice fishing can get. Temperature is just one factor to consider. You must remember that you’ll spend hours on the ice and weather may change, with rising winds, snowfall and a generally high level of humidity in the air can make 30 degrees fahrenheit feel like 0. The general guide is to overdress. It is better to have to take off layers than not have additional ones to put on. Shoes are especially important as feet get cold first during ice fishing. Bring some extra wool socks if you doubt the thermal efficiency of your footwear.
The auger is an absolute essential for ice fishing. There are many types to choose from and it’s hard to go wrong with your choice, it all depends on your budget. A manual auger might be your choice if money is tight. They are a bit of a chore and will require you to have some technique and strength to drill a hole in the ice with relative speed. For some fishermen manual augers are perfectly fine, and they trust them more than fuel-powered or electric-powered augers. One core advantage of the power auger is your ability to relocate with greater ease. If you don’t need to put in too much effort to drill another hole in the ice, then you’re more likely to move on from a spot that isn’t rich with fish. Also, keep in mind that augers come in different sizes for different hole diameters. They range from 6 to 10 inches, and your choice should depend on the local fishing regulations that determine the permitted size. This is one of the reasons why you shouldn’t attempt to save money on an auger by using a chainsaw to cut the whole – you might get in trouble for that.
Chances are, you’re going to spend a good few
hours on your ice fishing trip, which means you’ll have quite a bit of stuff to
bring with you. The simplest way to transport it is with a fishing sled. You
can simply pull the heft behind you on the ice or attach it to a snowmobile or
ATV if you want to get to your location faster and the ice allows for it. Sleds
can also be attached to motordogs – small tracked vehicles that are operated
much like a lawnmower. That way you can transport gear and yourself in the
sled. Either way, you won’t regret buying a fishing sled.