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dwm376s
12-15-2005, 01:20 PM
So went out today and tested some ice on a farm pond here in NW Missouri. Was pleasantly surprised to find out that the ice is plenty thick for some icefishing (3"-5").

Happened to have an ultralight with me and dropped a jig down a hole I created with a rock. No luck. But I plan to go back. Without much experience on the ice...what are some basic tips and suggestions ya'll have?????

Charger
12-15-2005, 02:07 PM
I have never ice fished, but I would try it once. A few guys I have talked to said a hut(ice house), a heater, tv, and plenty of beer were their necessities. Haha!

GlenC
12-15-2005, 02:41 PM
I have never ice fished, but I would try it once. A few guys I have talked to said a hut(ice house), a heater, tv, and plenty of beer were their necessities. Haha!


Ive never ice fished either. but seems to me a hut with a heater would not mix to well with ice.....lol

Charger
12-15-2005, 02:49 PM
Ive never ice fished either. but seems to me a hut with a heater would not mix to well with ice.....lol

Thats exactly what I told them. Apparently, the ice way up north gets pretty thick!

GlenC
12-15-2005, 02:52 PM
Thats exactly what I told them. Apparently, the ice way up north gets pretty thick!


Yeah well you aint gonna get my big ol behind out on any ice no matter how thick it is :-)

drifter106
12-15-2005, 04:31 PM
Well with that last cold front that went through I thought we would have ice early for sure. I am from southeast Kansas and right now we are in limbo. Not good enough for ice fishiing and dam sure can't get the boat on (witht he exception of Melvern). I ice fished several times and we usually hit the back side of dams or over sunken brush in river edges in the lake (where we normally fish out of a boat). One of the first things you will notice is the "sounds" of ice cracking and the ice cracking itself. I have been on ice a ft deep and know its safe but when you hear that stuff pop and crackle it makes you wonder. Just play it safe...I would make sure it was at least 4 inches thick.

Good Luck!!

jd

Eager Beaver
12-15-2005, 06:30 PM
Ive never ice fished either. but seems to me a hut with a heater would not mix to well with ice.....lol

You are thinking of a blast furnace, and what we use are little heaters with little propane tanks that screw into them, and in a hut you have a floor between you and the ice and have a layer of air between the floor and the ice. The warm air rises and dosen't affect the ice, unless you sit in one spot for a very long time. 4 inches of solid ice will hold several people in a small area. I was going out this week-end and we had a warm spell for a week and we are back to square one with mostly open water.

Eager Beaver
12-15-2005, 06:32 PM
Well with that last cold front that went through I thought we would have ice early for sure. I am from southeast Kansas and right now we are in limbo. Not good enough for ice fishiing and dam sure can't get the boat on (witht he exception of Melvern). I ice fished several times and we usually hit the back side of dams or over sunken brush in river edges in the lake (where we normally fish out of a boat). One of the first things you will notice is the "sounds" of ice cracking and the ice cracking itself. I have been on ice a ft deep and know its safe but when you hear that stuff pop and crackle it makes you wonder. Just play it safe...I would make sure it was at least 4 inches thick.

Good Luck!!

jd

That popping and cracking and shifting is a good thing. That means that it is making new ice and is safer than quiet ice.

dwm376s
12-15-2005, 08:27 PM
yeah i am definately comfortable with the thickness of the ice we have on this particular body of water, I am more curious about rigs..... using jigging spoons, or minnows, or crappie nibbles etc.???? any pointers????

Len
12-16-2005, 12:27 PM
I do lots of ice fishing here in Northern Indiana and Southern Michgan. We mainly fish for Crappie in the evening and at night. We use glow jigs from Jamminjigs.com.and tip them with minnows.You will also need a good fish locator.The one I use is Vexilar FL-18.It will always show you if the hole you are fishing in has fish.

PIGINTHEPIGPEN
12-16-2005, 03:32 PM
When we played pond hockey as kids. The adults that had also played when they were young always told us. If you don't hear the ice shifting and popping. You better get off. This causes the ice to expand and actually makes it stronger. Ice that makes no noise is not good.

ReelFun
12-16-2005, 05:46 PM
yeah i am definately comfortable with the thickness of the ice we have on this particular body of water, I am more curious about rigs..... using jigging spoons, or minnows, or crappie nibbles etc.???? any pointers????

Being from Michigan....Small tear drops tipped with maggots for gills. 2 lb line with #4 hook and a minnow for crappie. Drop them to the bottom and reel up a foot or two at a time until they bite. You may use a small slip bobber or just a light rod. when you use a bobber for crappie let them take it 6"-8" before setting the hook. They won't have it all the way in their mouth otherwise. Also when you find the right depth try jigging up a foot or two from the spot then dropping it back down. Start at the deepest drop you can find in the and work your way back shallow to find them. Yellow perch hang out in the shallows in 10' or less of water during first ice. Good luck.;)

ReelFun
12-16-2005, 05:48 PM
When we played pond hockey as kids. The adults that had also played when they were young always told us. If you don't hear the ice shifting and popping. You better get off. This causes the ice to expand and actually makes it stronger. Ice that makes no noise is not good.

I agree. It scares the heck out of you but loud pops means more ice is being made. :D

Roberta
12-19-2005, 10:22 AM
Unless you plan on fishing a LOT or want to drill dozens of holes or have to go through a foot of ice, a hand auger is fine. We can cut holes pretty quick and move around as needed.

We use UL ice rods and short UL rods just because we haven't gotten around to buying any tip-ups. We like the Northland Tackle swimming jigs (they are shaped like bananas) tipped with a waxworm or two. We would like to get a flasher and a pop-up shelter,, but with ice being an undependable commodity around here, can't justify the expense. We just hit the same spots we catch fish at in open water. Get yourself a bucket to sit on, too, if you don't hae one already.
We only have about two inches of ice here, but with single digits last night and the next couple of nights, we might get to cut a hole or two this weekend. - Roberta

captnhazelwood69
12-19-2005, 10:35 AM
Up here in Canada, we do plenty of Ice Fishing for all species. For Crappie, we use small teardrop jigs with a small minnow. All bites for crappie come after sunset. We usually get bigger fish in the winter than in summer. Hope this Helps.

Capynhazelwood69 ( John )

crappie66
12-21-2005, 10:01 AM
I do a lot of ice fishing in Northeast Indiana, and over the last few years I have been doing more ice fishing than fishing in the summertime, sometimes getting out 6 times a week on the ice. Crappie usually are suspended but can still be caught on the bottom. Your best bet to catching crappie is to just use a small ice jig (size 14 or 16) tipped with a spike. If there are crappie present they will hit this presentation. Once you get a crappie or two and know they are in the area then you might want to try an ice jig tipped with a minnow. Sweedish Pimples and small jigging rapalas work well for iceing winter time crappie. The key is to downsize everything when ice fishing, use 2 or 3 lb test, keep the drag loose to the point where a dink bluegill can strip off line. There are times when crappie won't take a spike or a minnow and prefer an ice fly with no bait. There is a lake that has schools of crappie that come into a channel and cruise back and forth only 1 foot oor two under the ice, that will only take ice flies, and won't touch any bait, these crappie average 14 plus inches and some guys will limit out if they chase and follow and school.

The best tool for ice fishing is a Vexilar or Marcum flasher, this will allow you to see where the fish are and how deep they are suspended. Just like in the summertime you wan't to drop your jig just slightly above the suspended fish and let them come up to get it.


Crappie can be tricky in the winter, but if you are persistant and willing to experiment you can catch them with ease.


Your best source of information is iceshanty.com, a website similar to this one dedicated soley to ice fishing. There are forums for just about every state and province where ice fishing occurs. That site has more information than one can imagine. No censorship or argueing over there, just messages from die hard fisherman, because real fisherman don't yield to the weather.

crappie66
12-21-2005, 10:44 AM
A Vexilar is relatively cheap, a new one goes for around $300 to 400, or you can buy a used one around $200, a cheap price to pay for the effectivness of the tool. Most people who own one say they won't even consider going ice fishing without a charged up Vexilar. Hand augers are usually all you need, a good one is the Lazer by Strikemaster, they go for around $50 or 60, just remember the smaller the hole the easier it is to drill and when you are searching for fish you want to be able to drill many holes quickly. A lot of people set up at night and fish with the light of a lantern, doing this it would be nice to have a portable shelter, they go for about $200 to 300, the lantern inside the shelter provides heat to keep you warm.

The tools for ice fishing are relatively cheap, so once you have your arsenal complete you will have what it takes to drill many holes, locate fish with the Vex, and stay warm and comfortable inside a shelter. A small price to pay for complete relaxation and enjoyment of catching slab panfish using 21 inch noodle rods that bend, and the sound of a nice microlite reels drag screaming.

percher
12-21-2005, 06:52 PM
The picture I have of a man on on a frozen lake, on his knees, using a rock to pound a hole in the ice thats supporting him. You can't imagine how that sounds to a southern boy who has never stood on a frozen lake. I guess you know what your doing. Happy holidays, Don

Ohio Angler
12-22-2005, 05:34 AM
I have never tried ice fishing but am seriously thinking about getting into it.I am right across the state line in Ohio just thirty minutes from Ft. Wayne.Any chance of meeting up with you some time this winter when you are going to be on the ice to get a feel for what ice fishing is all about? I'm fairly familiar with the locations of most of the lakes in NE Indiana.