Ice Fishing

Ice Fishing

Ice Fishing
Fishing through a gap in a frozen lake

In colder climates when rivers and lakes freeze, fishermen the world over have enjoyed extending the fishing season by packing up the gear, and going ice fishing.  Ice fishing usually starts with cutting a hole in the ice, either by an auger, or chisels and saws.  Larger holes are cut out for spear fishing from on top of the ice. Smaller (usually 8 inches in diameter) holes are drilled and cleaned with a skimmer.   Ice anglers may sit around on chairs or stools but most commonly a 5 gallon bucket is used.  

For anglers that enjoy being indoors while being out doors, there are a variety of options for being sheltered while out in the lake.  Simple tents are used all the way up to specially designed and built shanty's that are driven out onto the lake when the ice is thick enough, and dropped on the lake over ideal fishing spots.  Other local names for these structures include,ice shack, fish house, shack, bobhouse, or ice hut, is sometimes utilised. These are carted or trailered onto the lake using a vehicle such as a snowmobile, ATV or truck. The two most ordinarily used types are moveable and permanent. The moveable houses are often made of a impenetrable material that is usually unshakable. The two best known types of portable houses are those with a protection that flips behind the user when not needed, or pop up protections with a door as the only way out. The permanent shelters are made of wood or metal and usually have wheels for easy transport. They can be as basic as a bunk heater and holes or have satellite television, bathrooms, stoves, full-size beds and may appear to be more like a mobile home than a fishing house. Some shanty's even come with heaters or stoves for cooking and keeping warm.  Some shanty's even get fitted with bunks for night fishing outings.  

It is a popular pursuit in many countries and each has it's own lexicon and terminology.

Rigs and gear are entirely different for ice fishing than for open water fishing.  At a minimum the equipment list would require warm clothes, including insulated boots, hand auger for drilling the holes, a jig pole and some simple tackle.  Anglers find a different kind of thrill with Ice fishing than open water fishing as a large fish is brought through a tiny hole in the frozen lake.