Ice fishing is a wintertime activity that can be enjoyed by anyone with access to frozen water that has at least one inch of thickness. It’s often paired with cross country skiing or snowshoeing as these are the most common ways to get around on the ice. A typical day of ice fishing begins with setting up all your gear. This includes your fishing rods and reel, augers for drilling holes in the ice, bait bucket, fish stringer, or net if you plan on catching anything besides panfish, and many more things that we will cover in this article!
What Is Ice Fishing?
The simple answer is that Ice Fishing is a recreational fishing activity where you catch fish through holes cut into frozen bodies of water. The bodies of water could be a small lake, a large river, or even a pond. The main tool used is an auger, and to start, you could research the 5 best hand ice augers. Ice fishing cannot be done without the right tools and knowledge of fish you might encounter. The most common fish encountered while ice fishing is varieties of panfish such as bluegills and perch. Larger pike and trout have been caught as well using a variety of techniques.
People Ice Fish For Several Reasons
Some people enjoy the idea of sitting around in a field all day, staring at a hole in the ice, and talking to friends or family for hours on end. Some people do it as a hobby to catch food for their freezer while simultaneously spending time with friends and/or family. Some people enjoy catching different varieties of fish while some just like doing something outside during winter months that doesn’t involve skiing or snowshoeing. Historically, many Native American tribes used this technique to catch food when other means were not available. It is still popularly practiced by remote northern communities where modern technology has not advanced enough to provide gas-powered augers or snowmobiles to access large bodies of water.
What You Need To Ice Fish
There are many things you need besides your basic clothing to go ice fishing today. They include an auger, shelter, auger handle, chisel for cutting through the ice if your auger doesn’t break through, fish pole with reel and lures or bait depending on what type of fish you wish to catch, safety equipment such as ice picks/ice claws/crowbar just in case the ice is too thick and you fall in (very unlikely), survival gear like food and portable stove if your car breaks down or is buried by snow, etc., waterproof container to keep your phone dry so that you can call for help if needed.
What To Fish For
As mentioned before, panfish are the most common fish caught through ice fishing. Panfish are very easy to catch and are quite tasty if you prepare them correctly. While it isn’t recommended that you go out onto the lake looking for trophy fish like northern pike or trout unless you have every last piece of ice safety equipment, it is well-worth learning about these fish so that when your friends bring theirs in you can ask questions about what type they have. Some tips include knowing how large a northern pike could get so that you know whether it’s safe to release or cook/eat depending on its size. There are also many kinds of panfish including bluegills, perch, crappie, rock bass, pumpkinseed, and many more.
Safety Measures To Take
Many people enjoy fishing on the ice throughout the entire winter, but it can be very dangerous if you’re not careful. The most common safety problem is falling through thin ice into an icy body of water. Try to stay aware of what’s around you at all times and wear your safety equipment (such as an ice pick) even if you think the ice will hold you up because it might not!
A rule of thumb is that there should be at least 4 inches of thickness for every inch in length; thus a four-foot-long piece of ice would need 16 inches minimum of thickness for safe walking on top. If your auger isn’t cutting through within 10 minutes, then there’s probably too much snow/ice on the surface to make it through. If you hear loud cracks or see a crack forming, get off of the ice quickly and call for help!
Ice fishing is a great recreational activity that the whole family can enjoy. It requires patience but anyone with even a little skill can bring in some tasty food to cook and eat at home. The best part about ice fishing is that once you’ve purchased your equipment there’s very little financial strain on you while you’re out there. We hope that this article sheds some light on how fun and rewarding an experience ice fishing can be for your family or group of friends!