I’m here to tell you about what you need to get started ice fishing. This is what you have to have to start and you can do it for under $100. Actually probably under $75. The first thing you’re gonna need by far is good ice. Now, there’s no such thing as safe ice, but when I mean good ice I’m talking about two inches thick or more. I’m always a little leery when I first walk out on ice because there is no such thing as safe ice, but when there’s no snow on it at least I can look down and see you know how it looks thickness wise. I’m not gonna talk a lot about ice safety, since there are a lot of videos out there.
The first thing you need when you’re ice fishing is an auger so you can get your way under the ice. Now this auger is very nice and it’s a hand one you actually put it down and you spin. It works really well. Another thing I forgot to mention. Gotta have sharp blades. If you buy a used auger, it might have dull blades and that’ll be brutal Make sure your blades are sharp. After you’ve drilled your hole, you need another thing, and that is an ice skimmer. You see this right here. You gotta reach into the hole and pull out all of the ice shavings that you drilled into, and an ice skimmer will get this out.
This one was under $10 so this is a really nice one cuz it’s metal and it’s telescopic, so now you can get under the ice, you need a fishing rod. Ice fishing rods are small. I think this is only 26 inches. The reason why? You’re sitting by a hole, so you don’t want a big long rod, and you’re fishing way far away from the hole. You want to be close to the hole you’re fishing and you can actually look down into the hole that you drill. You can get a ice fishing rod for under $20 with the line on it and all, especially if you’re just fishing for panfish.
The third thing, can you see it? You need a jig. The smaller the better for jigs. You’re gonna buy jigs because when you are fishing straight down that’s called jigging because all you do is you bounce your bait or your lure up and down. When you are starting ice fishing, smaller, tiny jigs is better because then you can catch a lot of different species of fish. You might even surprise yourself you can still catch big fish on tiny jigs. Matter of fact, I just caught a really big largemouth on a tiny jig, so that’s all you need is a very little jig. On your jig though, they usually are bare. You need to put bait so the fourth thing you’re gonna need is bait. The most popular or most common thing to use, and this is where I found the most success is a waxwork.
This is a wax worm this is what you’re gonna use typically if you’re using a jig and you’re fishing for a panfish this is what I suggest when you’re just starting out. If you are unable to get wax worms, and you have to buy something from a store, where it’s like artificial stuff, I suggest like crappie nibbles, there’s a lot of different Berkley things that they sell at WalMart that you could put on a hook, so there are some alternatives. You can even, and I’ve used this and it has worked, you can use Slim Jims as bait on hooks.
Slim Jims have caught me several sunfish and bluegill through the ice. You just put a little bit of the Slim Jim on your hook. And finally the last thing, you won’t need this unless you catch a fish, but let’s hope that you do, you need a pliers. Always, always use a pliers when you’re trying to get a hook out of something toothy like a northern pike because they can bite and it hurts. There are specialized pliers if you don’t want to go grab one out of your toolbox. You can buy something like this which is a longer nose thing so you really can keep your hands away from a fish’s mouth and this grabs and clings on to look. Hey don’t forget this too. You need a bucket you definitely need a bucket for when you’re ice fishing because you want something to sit on. Also, it doubles as something to put all your stuff into when you’re ice fishing. All right.
I hope this helps you. Don’t be afraid of going out there and trying to bust some fish out on the ice it’s very fun and I’m glad I got into it. I thought fishing was just something that you can do in the summer but you know, when the weather changes, just change tactics. Get out there on the ice.