The phrase winter blues exists for a reason. The cold winter months can be a sad time for those of us who love the outdoors. Enter, ice fishing. Now, when people say they don’t like ice fishing, I have to believe they just might not be well enough prepared. If you fish the rest of the year, ice fishing is an easy cross over, just with a few added challenges. Yes, sitting in the cold can be daunting. But if you pack all the necessary gear and dress for the weather, and bring along some buddies of course, I guarantee you’ll have a great day on the (frozen) lake.
1. Hand Warmer
Let’s start this list with one of our coolest finds. Some simple, disposable hot hands are never a bad idea. Or you could step up your game with something a little fancier. An electronic hand warmer that also charges your phone? I think you’ll get your money’s worth.
Legendary Choice: KARECEL Rechargeable Hand Warmers
2. Ice Fishing Rod
This one is obvious, but important to put some thought into! You need a solid ice fishing rod. If you dig too down into the weeds, this can be an incredibly complicated decision. But the most important thing to consider when purchasing a winter weather rod is durability. Invest in one that will be with you for the long haul.
Legendary Choice: Shakespeare Ugly Stik GX2 Ice Fishing Reel & Rod Combo
3. Neck Gaiter
This one might fly under the radar if you’ve never been out there on a cold day with nothing protecting your face and neck. When the temperature starts to drop, a good fleece-lined neck gaiter will keep you on the lake for a lot longer!
Legendary Choice: Anglers Neck Gaiter
It will be one of your more costly ice fishing expenses, but a good auger is a pretty crucial piece of ice fishing gear. Think about it. For a day on the ice, you’ll want to drill multiple holes so you can get a few tip ups going. Having an inadequate auger will make this process pretty miserable. Bite the bullet and invest in one that will last you a while.
5. Ice Scoop
Pretty simple, but there are definitely some things to look for in an ice scoop! When you’re hauling all of your gear to the best spot on the lake, gear that’s easily packable will make your life a lot easier.
Legendary Choice: Flameer Foldable Plastic Ice Fishing Scoop
6. Warm, Durable Fishing Jacket
Seems obvious, but never underestimate the power of a warm, durable jacket when you’re heading out on the ice. Investing in a solid water-resistant jacket, ideally with plenty of pocket storage, is essential for anyone getting into ice fishing.
Legendary Choice: Anglers Glacier Ridge Jacket
7. Good Boots & Spikes
This may be considered two items if you haven’t yet invested in a solid pair of boots. No matter what kind of boots you get, or already have, spikes are a must. From all of us who have wiped out multiple times walking out to the fishing hole. Even just a quality set of spikes that attach to your boots will come in handy on days when there’s no snow out there and the ice is really slick.
8. Insulated Bucket With Seat
A good bucket always comes in handing when you’re fishing. But when you’re ice fishing, one with a seat is ideal. A separate chair just means one more thing to haul out to the lake. And after being out there for a few hours, that seat attachment will quickly become your best friend.
Legendary Choice: FraBill Sit-N-Fish Bucket
9. Utility Sled
We’ve gone through all of that important gear you’re bound to need on the lake, but what about something to actually transport everything? An ice fishing sled doesn’t need to be fancy, it just needs to be durable.
Legendary Choice: Shappell 54″ Multi-Purpose Sled
10. Portable Heater
Last, but certainly not least. A portable propane heater will make your day on the ice so much more enjoyable. Ice fishing is all about enjoying the outdoors. It’s definitely easier to do that if you’re not freezing your butt off waiting for to see a tip up move.
Legendary Choice: Mr. Heater Portable Propane Heater