Fishing through the ice on frozen lakes or rivers

John Carter By John Carter, 18th Aug 2010 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Outdoor>Fishing

This is about fishing through the ice. It tells you what bait and equipment to use and describes the concept of fishing to win cash or merchandise.

Ice Fishing in Practice

Any fisherman that lives in a place where winter is winter has the opportunity to go fishing on the ice that forms on the local lakes and rivers. Fishing through the ice is a popular sport that can get you out of the house during the winter. There are many fishermen following the sport that spend their weekends fishing in one of the many ice fishing tournaments that dot the winter scene. If you are really good some of these tournaments pay as much as $150,000 in cash or other prizes.

One of these tournaments is held at the end of January in Brainerd, Minnesota that is sponsored by the local Jaycees. They call their tournament the Ice Fishing Extravaganza that many fishermen participate in covering the local lake with fishermen. This can be found on line by having your search engine find “Ice Fishing Extravaganza.”

Many other ice fishing tournaments are held in the United States and Canada wherever there is lake or river holding fish. Ice fishing often turns into a social affair closely resembling the summer cookout. In this case the food and the means of cooking it out onto the ice with you. When it’s freezing cold a cup of hot chocolate and a grilled sausage on a bun really hits the spot. Other fishermen will drag a big pot of soup or stew onto the ice.

The equipment used while ice fishing is quite different from that used at other times of the year. One of the biggest differences is the equipment includes some sort of device for getting through the ice. This can vary all the way from an ax to an elaborate auger driven by a gasoline engine. All of this equipment is available through your local sporting goods dealer.

Some of the other gear includes a wide variety of bait. This usually is live bait with shiners being the most common. There is also a wide variety of other critters going by such names as mousy, wax worms, meal worms among others. Most of these are available from local bait shops.

The most common tackle is the “tip-up” or sometimes locally called “type” this is a simple piece of wood about 18 inches long and about an inch and a half wide equipped with a flag that goes up when a fish bites. Tip-ups also contain a length of line that is usually braided cotton twine although today this is often replaced with monofilament line.

Many fishermen simply stand around on the ice waiting for one of their tip-ups to go up signaling that a fish has taken their bait. In most places the fisherman is allowed to use six tip-ups while fishing.

The other common piece of equipment used is a jigging rod that today is a short fiberglass rod about two feet long equipped with a reel holding monofilament line. This rod is “jigged” up and down through a hole in the ice like you were handling a regular fishing rod. Although you can use one of these jigging rods with live bait it is more common to use artificial lures. These are usually carried by local sporting goods or bait dealers.

Although most fishermen just stand about on the ice sometimes bringing folding chairs to sit on others especially in really cold country have fishing shacks they drag out onto the ice for use during an entire season. Some of these ice fishing shacks are quite elaborate with all the comforts of home. Besides that they have built in holes in the floor where you can go fishing through the ice without ever having to go outside.

Ice fishing is a sport enjoyed by many often including the whole family. Try it next winter when the lakes are frozen over.


Fishing, Frozen, Ice, Lakes, Rivers, Winter, Winter Sport

Meet the author

author avatar John Carter
I am a geologist, photographer and writer. I used to be a helicopter pilot before I got married. Most of my writing will probably be about geology, mining and prospecting although I am versed in many other fields, so don't be surprised.

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