Ice Fishing Tips for Beginners from Mack Prioleau
The winter months will soon be upon us. For outdoor lovers like myself, the long winter months could mean forgoing our favorite activities and waiting out the season indoors. Thankfully, I discovered ice fishing, and I’ve been doing it every winter since. Hello, all! This is Mack Prioleau. In this latest blog entry, I thought I’d share with you a few tips to help you have a smooth and enjoyable ice fishing experience.
Wear proper clothing
It cannot be emphasized enough how dangerous it could be for you if you stay under the cold, winter weather for long hours without being properly covered. I recommend that you wear under layer clothing made of polypropylene material—from top to bottom—as this type of material provides you with a moisture barrier. If you find yourself sweating underneath all your layers of clothing, the moisture won’t stay on your skin, preventing hypothermia from cold sweat.
It is always best to use layers and then remove each layer as you see fit. Multiple layers of clothing will keep you protected from the harsh, cold winter air. And when the air gets a little warm for you, you can just remove your top layers—better to have layers to remove than to be lacking in proper warm clothing when you’re out at your ice fishing spot.
For your footwear, thick sock and pack boots are what I would advise.
Where there are ice-fishing spots, there usually are ice shanties for rent as well. These are typically 6′ x 6′ plastic or wooden shanties that you can easily set up within minutes. To keep the interior warm, you can use a heater or stove. Be sure to practice caution when using such heating devices to avoid accidental burns.
These shanties can also comfortably accommodate two persons so you can fish with your buddy out on the ice.
On another note, you could consider bringing your ice skates with you so you can get up and get moving every now and then to stay warm and stretch your muscles.
First, you will need appropriate equipment for transporting all your fishing gear. A sled or toboggan is commonly used for this purpose. Next, you will need the proper tools for the actual ice fishing. The basic tools that you should bring along are an ice auger for drilling your fishing hole, a skimmer for scooping out slush or ice chips from your hole, an ice spud or chisel, bait bucket, a seat or chair, dip net, and a hook disgorger.
For fishing, you will need a jigging rod, tip-up (that tells you when a fish is on your line), hooks, lures, jigs, line, and leaders (wires that you attach the hooks on).
The ice shanty rental place may have some of these for rent as well so make sure to check first to know which ones you need to bring on your own.
In the coming days, I will share with you ice fishing spots that you can check out so make sure to come back for those! This is Mack Prioleau, and I hope you enjoyed reading this post.