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5 Basic Tips For Ice Fishing

Posted by Scott Sibley on

With hunting season in most areas closed ice fishing is top of mind for outdoorsmen.  Ice Fishing is a different beast than open water, with sonar, power (or hand) augers, snowmobiles, huts, heaters, etc there are many new obstacles to conquer in order to get the trophy fish up through that 12” drilled hole in the ice. Simple Fishing has put together a comprehensive list with tips and tactics to help ensure you don’t get skunked out on the hard water.

Ice Fishing Walleye


  1. Fish deep holes to find more fish. Fish will not spread out over the lake during the cold winter months as they do during the open water season.

 Two Fisherman Ice Fishing Close to Shore

  1. Fish closer to shore. There is no need to head out to the middle of the ice covered lake. Find where a stream enters the lake during the summer months or drop offs and drill a few test holes. Chances are you won’t be waiting long before you get your first bite.


  1. Do the jig! Everybody who ice fishes will tell you to jig your spoon. Let the spoon sink all the way to the bottom and then lift it (jig) a few inches and let it flutter back to the bottom. Repeat. Pro Tip- Make your offering more appealing to the fish by adding a minnow.


  1. Check Tip-ups frequently. When you check your tip-up often it gives the bait some action, attracting the fish, which may increase strikes.

 Tip Up

  1. Easy on the drag. You want your ice fishing reel to have minimal drag. If your drag is set to high fish will often spit out the hook because they feel the tension. With little drag you can let the fish run with it and then set the hook.


Sometimes it’s hard to find the motivation to leave your nice warm house to go fishing through a small 8”-12” hole in the ice at -30, but the ones who get out, even if it’s just a couple of hours are usually the ones who become successful at it. So grab your winter gear and fishing.


Do you need help finding the right ice fishing lures? Simple Fishing is releasing a limited number of Elite Ice Fishing boxes on November 23.2018. These Ice boxes will be loaded with ice fishing tackle that is sure to get you that monster fish you've been seeking. Sign up for our newsletter to be the first to know when the Elite Ice Fishing box is released.

Simple Fishing Elite Ice Fishing Box

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  • Hi,
    thank you for your article.
    I can suggest not to forget a good pair of fishing sunglasses to protect your eyes!
    You can find a good selection here:

    Andrea on

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★Angler Reviews

Angler Reviews

141 reviews

Some content was to similar, would rather larger spectrum of baits

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