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Ice Fishing Gear Checklist For The Winter Fishermen

When fishing on water 30-50 degrees below zero, a simple slip can get you hypothermia. With all these risks at hand, you can nonetheless, protect yourself from the elements by investing in a few quality ice fishing gear.



man-ice-fishing-on-frozen-canadian | Ice Fishing Gear Checklist For The Winter Fishermen | Featured

Protect yourself when ice fishing by having the proper gear for this activity. Fishing on a frozen lake or river might present a few hazards. Especially when the water is 30-50 degrees below zero — a simple slip can get you hypothermia so it’s best to have the right equipment.

RELATED: 10 Easy To Use Fishing Poles For Beginners

Ice Fishing Gear Checklist For The Winter Fishermen

Fishing In Sub Zero Temperatures

Fishing may be a real waiting game for some, but great gear can make fishing a lot less punishing. I don’t mind waiting for hours for the fish to snag the bait but in sub-zero temperatures, it’s downright physically strenuous. This is where ice fishing gear comes into play so I can avoid freezing in the cold, cold ice. Here are some of the ice fishing equipment you should always have on the truck.

1. Base Layer Clothes

happy-elderly-fisherman-catch-fish-on | fishing gear

The most basic apparel for anglers is comfortable but warm clothes. You’ll be spending the rest of the day on the ice meaning a few layers of clothing, and some extra pieces will protect you from the extremes.

2. Ice Fishing Gloves

fisherman-overalls-on-winter-fishing-catches | ice fishing rods

Another essential item on the list is a pair of ice fishing gloves. These are specialized gloves because they are meant to protect your hands from cold water. Thus, there is a lesser risk of getting frostbites.

3. Boots

fisherman on ice with fishing rod on a sunny winter day | cheap ice fishing setup

Photo by Vadim Bochkarev /

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To protect your toes from the cold ice below them, a pair of insulated boots is necessary. The waterproof ones are very helpful in keeping your feet dry.

4. Ice Spikes

shoe-snow-spikes-chains-on-path | ice fishing kits

Common sense dictates that there’s a lot less traction between your shoes and ice. However, spikes or cleats can easily solve this issue. But if your boots work well on ice, cleats can be optional.

5. Ice Suit

ice-fisherman-on-winter-lake | ice fishing gear list

Another optional ice fishing apparel is the ice suit. There’s very little water that may come splashing out of the tiny hole you drill on the ice. If you’re careful enough, you’ll barely get wet by the cold water splashing from the game’s movement.

6. Shelter

tents-on-winter-ice-fishing | eskimo ice fishing

We now come to my favorite item on the list. While some people fish for a couple of hours on the lake, I’d like to stay out for long hours on the ice.

The shelter helps me do just that. There’s something about these warm tents that makes me feel at home, so I always bring it with me whenever I head to Alaska.


7. Anchors

close-boer-fishing-rod-fish-around | ice fishing jig rod

If you’re one to use a shelter like me, you better bring along anchors as well. I prefer screw-on anchors instead of the nail types. Hammering a nail on the ice can easily break the brittle surface forcing you to move to another spot.

RELATED: The Perfect Baits And Lures For Outdoor Fishing

8. Depth Finder

Chart plotter Raymarine HybridTouch on Russian boat & yacht exhibition | new ice fishing gadgets

Photo by ilmarinfoto /

Sonars and underwater cameras are all over ice fishing shops but I still use the old depth finder. I guess some of us find it really hard to adapt to new technology even when they’re a lot more convenient.

9. Auger

ice-screws-fishing-winter-frosty-morning | ice fishing essentials

Augers are necessary for cutting through thick ice easily. In addition, the drilling motion makes it safer to dig a hole without cracking the ice.

10. Scoops/Skimmer

hobby-winter-fishing | best ice fishing gear

Ice scoops are also necessary for cleaning the hole you dug with an auger. Because of the ice scrapings around the hole, your line may not fit. This is where the skimmers do their job.

11. Tip Ups

tip-ice-fishing-hole | ice fishing gear

Fishing is a very preferential sport. While other anglers prefer using a rod, tip-ups are my game plan. It’s just convenient having to cast multiple lines at the same time bumping up the chances of reeling in fish.

12. Tackle

close-ice-fishing-tackles-equipment-winter | ice fishing lures

No one goes out fishing without a tackle unless you’re survival fishing. Baits and lures are necessary for fishing, whether you’re using live or plastic ones from Cabela’s.

13. Bucket

winter-fishing-rods-accessories-on-background |ice fishing rigs

I like bringing my bucket because it serves as a dual purpose container and bench, in case I forget to bring a folding chair.

14. Folding Chair

ice-fishing-set-on-palmer-lake ice | new ice fishing gear 2021

More than a sport, this activity can also be a great way to relax and just sit back. Bring a comfortable folding chair with you so that you won’t have to strain your back while waiting for a catch.

15. Food And Water

father-son-on-winter-fishing-drinking | ice fishing

Lastly, snacks and beverages are a MUST HAVE for any outing endeavor. Grabbing a bite to eat in case you get hungry won’t be a problem.

Meanwhile, check out this awesome video about Ice Fishing Gear by Greg Karch:

There might be some other items that you’d like to bring to help you pass the time, like a book as you wait for your catch. The best thing to remember is to enjoy the moment and have a great time.

If you have ice fishing gear ideas you’d like to share with us, feel free to drop your two cents on the comments section!

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