It is a little scary thinking about the dangers of ice fishing, but it probably is no more dangerous than standing in my bass boat on one foot while wearing heavy boots and a snowmobile suit, and fishing alone. I have often thought that if I hit something with my trolling motor and fell overboard I would probably drown since my clothing would pull me to the bottom! Still, I want to know how to be safe and what to do to be safe.
I have warm clothes, but would they be suitable for ice fishing? Would I need to carry my coleman propane heater, (buy direct) or would handwarmers (buy direct) be enough? And how would I ever keep my hands warm? How would weather affect ice fishing?
Building or buying a hut (buy direct) and finding the right place to put it would be a challenge. Just deciding where to drill a hole would be a skill I would have to learn, as would the actual drilling itself. I would have to learn to use the drill, for starters! (buy direct) I probably would want to keep cutting new holes trying to find the fish! Would I need a depthfinder? (buy direct) And I understand the fish do move and conditions change. Watching those guys on the In-Fisherman TV show pulling big old catfish through holes that looked too small showed me how much I would need to learn.
Sitting in a hut, warm and comfortable and safe from the outside air, while jigging through a hole in the ice and watching tip-ups stationed all around, sounds like fun. Staying in one place might not be so bad! It reminds me of the nights we put out trotlines, built a fire on the bank, cast out a few lines and then waited in warm comfort for a bite. That was very relaxing, and great fun!
But what would I need. Could I be happy with the basics - a bucket, some line and hooks and an auger? Probably not, if you look at all the junk in my bass boat! I would want all the stuff I could get, and even more! I am sure I would want a sled to haul it all on!
I know walleye, bluegill and perch are often caught through the ice, but was suprised to find out bass, catfish, crappie and bream also bite when their world is frozen over. I would have to learn how to catch all of them!
And when are the best times and worst times? I have heard people get on the ice before it is really safe because first ice is a good time, but what about later in the winter and at the end of the ice fishing season? Do fish really bite at night under the ice?
Even pictures of ice fishing makes me want to go!
I have got to go ice fishing!
What do you think? Got any information about ice fishing? Tell me about it. If so, you can also post information about it for others on my message board - you must register to post but can read the board as a guest. Also, if you have thoughts you want to share about this topic, let me know about it at firstname.lastname@example.org. for a "Fishtale." Tell others what you like.