Ice fishing can be one of the most satisfying types of fishing out there as you battle against the elements and the cold in order to try and challenge yourself to catch the biggest fish possible. Picking the right lure for ice fishing though can be very difficult as you have a lot to think about.
Finding the best ice fishing lure will give you the greatest chance of making a catch as different lures will move around in different ways on the line, which will be able to attract specific fish in specific conditions depending on what type of lure you need.
Here though we give you all the information that you need to find the best ice fishing jigs by explaining what the best options are in different situations. We have also looked through the ice fishing lure reviews to give come up with the 10 best lures on the market so you are able to choose the top rated fishing jigs for your adventure.
How To Choose The Best Ice Fishing Lures – Buying Guide
Type Of Lure
There are many different fishing lures that all come in their different categories. They can though be divided down into four main groups which are hard baits, spoons, jigs as well as plastics. They all have their different qualities and here we will go through each of them to see which one would be the best choice for your fishing trip.
Hard baits – There are a few different of hard baits when it comes to ice fishing and one of the most exciting are gliding baits. These are a fairly new solution which will make it appear as though the bait is gliding to the water like a fish which is sure to attract many predators to it. A more common and well-used type of hard bait is the vibrating option which has been successfully used for many years now.
The general idea of these types of bait is that the vibrations that they cause displace the water around them in a way that attracts other fish. Those vibrations are able to attract fish from a long distance which makes them an ideal choice for ice fishing. If you’re having a day when the bite is slow then this lure could be your key to changing your fortunes.
Spoons – These types of lure have been used for many years and spoon lures remain the number one choice for many fishermen. They can be broken down into two types which are flutter ice fishing spoons as well as jigging spoons and both of them have a vertical presentation to the fish. Flutter spoons generally have a wider profile but are also thinner as well which allows them to slowly fall into the water and flutter their light on the way down. These are known as a great option for catching lake trout and are sure to give you a healthy catch.
Jigging spoons are very similar to flutter spoons but with a few key differences as they do not flutter or wobble in the water the same way as a flutter spoon does and instead tends to dart down into the water which can quickly attract fish to them. The spoon constantly shakes in the water, getting to fish to strike at it. This can be a very effective solution and both types of spoon can do a brilliant job of attracting fish to your line.
Jigs – The jig is a very commonly used type of lure and something that everyone should have in their tackle box as they can not only be used for ice fishing but for all types of fishing as well. The jig can be topped with the likes of a soft plastic or a minnow to increase its effectiveness and a lot of its qualities comes down to the expertise of the user.
One option which has come in and out of fashion is the hair jig but despite their unusual look, the results speak for themselves as they have been used for great catches time and time again. They can be used in a variety of different ways and in different scenarios and settings so they have a lot of diversity.
A lot of the products that we have reviewed here are either jigs or comes with jigs as part of a set and that’s because of their known effectiveness at catching fish, both in normal circumstances as well as ice fishing.
Plastics – This is another common type of lure and has been selling well for years and with good reason. These are the types of lures that aim to mimic the real thing as they are generally shaped to look like fish or the type of creature that they usually eat. Due to this they can come in a wide variety of colors and designs.
There is also the option of using something like this with a standard jig which will be able to give you a great presentation to any fish that you’re looking to catch. There are numerous different plastic lures which are sometimes made with specific fish in mind. Therefore it’s important to know which fish that you are aiming to catch so you can pick a specific lure for that situation.
It’s not just the type of fish that can affect your choice of lure either as there are other important aspects such as the clarity of the water as dirty water will have different requirements from clear water. It’s all about knowing your environment and making sure that you’re planning ahead for every instant as you don’t want to be caught in a situation where you have the wrong lures for your ice fishing, which is why buying a set can be a great option.
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Type Of Fish
When you’re ice fishing there are only a certain number of fish you’ll be looking for as not a huge amount of species spend their time underneath the ice. Perhaps the most common fish out of all of them though will be the walleye as this presents a good target for your ice fishing so therefore getting walleye ice fishing lures can be important. The fish can be very fast and put up a great fight but that makes the catch all the more rewarding. They often move in groups so you could find numerous lines picking up fish all at the same time.
Another rewarding fish to catch under the waves is the sauger which has a very similar appearance to walleye and can often be found in the same swimming areas. This means that you have a great chance of catching both species very quickly. The walleye are generally a touch bigger than the sauger and are a bit more golden in color. Sauger are a great catch but if you’re looking for size from your fishing trip, then you’ll rather catch a walleye.
Northern pike are another type of fish which can be seen under the ice, waiting to be caught by a skilled angler. This type of fish has actually been known to sit just under the ice in order to catch small walleye and sauger fish which are thrown back into the lack by fishermen. If you do get one of these fish on your line then you’ll know that you’ve achieved something when you have caught it because they are notoriously ferocious fish which won’t get caught without a fight so therefore having a strong lure is a must.
It can be a great idea as well to get ice fishing perch lures as yellow perch and tullibee are other types of fish that can be caught as well, these are less likely and will be a bit of a bonus if you get to catch them. They are both tasty fish which makes them great for a permanent catch and shouldn’t put up much of a fight against your line. The eelpout is another fish though that will give you a tough fight and these can be a great catch as it will be very rewarding but they also taste great too and have even been referred to as the freshwater cod. One frustrating part of catching these fish though is that they often spin on their way back up to the hole as an escape effort but this can just tangle up your whole line.
Trout are another type of popular fish and many of the lures on this list are great for trout fishing. They vary in location so if you’re wanting to catch trout then you need to make sure that the destination that you want to fish supports them and the same could be said for panfish as well. Before you head off in any location it’s best to check beforehand which type of fish you’ll likely be catching and when you do that you’ll be able to adjust your lures to make sure that you have the right set.
Perhaps one of the most underrated aspects of ice fishing is picking the right color for your lure as this can be vitally important. Having all the other aspects of fishing is essential but when it comes down to making that catch, the difference could well be in the color of the lure that you are using and there are a few key tips for using the right one.
Water color is perhaps the biggest consideration when it comes to which color to use and sometimes it can be the best advice to start with a multi-colored jig if you are unfamiliar with conditions. This is the safe option as you are covering all bases but you won’t get the best results in comparison with using the perfect color for the conditions.
Primary colors can be great if you’re in clear water but you’ll also want to ensure that if you’re using metal lures that they are not too bright. In cloudier waters then it’s better to go with more fluorescent colors that come in different shades as these will be working the hardest against the dullness of the water. In these types as waters it’s a good idea to use a variety of contrast colors whereas in clearer water it’d be an advantage to use just a single block of color. If you have more metallic colors then gold is the best option as the water is cloudy while silver would be the best option in clearer waters.
The thickness of the ice can also play a big role as well. The thinner the ice, the more you want to be using primary and natural colors as the brightness shining through the ice will help these colors stand out. The thicker the ice, the more you want to be using glow colors as well as bright metallic flash options as the lack of light could hinder any other types of lure.
The exact same applies with snow cover as well, as the thicker the snow, the brighter your lure needs to be. When the ice or snow is thick, not a lot of light at all can travel down into the depths of the water below which is why progressively brighter colors are needed. One of the best options here would be to use a glow orange color which can be used in conjunction with a bright metallic flash which matches the water color.
The same science applies with the water depth as well, as the deeper you go down, the darker it gets. This also had an effect on how light is seen in the water as well as everything gets a bit duller. This is most famously seen with anything that’s red as under only a small amount of water it will appear grey in color. This change happens with all colors eventually but at the blue and green end of the light scale is where you will get the color staying for the longest. Fluorescent as well as glow colors will be able to maintain that color for a lot deeper than any standard colors.
There are also other factors to consider as well such as the time of the day and the level of sunshine. A lot about the color of your lure is simply how bright it will be to the fish. If it’s a cloudy and dark day then you will need a brighter lure than you would on a sunny day and the same applies to the level of light at sunrise and sunset as well.
Many aspects can affect the optimal color for fish and if you’re not having any luck then it might be for the best to experiment and see if something else is working out for you. If there is anyone around then you can always ask what is working and what isn’t. Fish can be unpredictable but using the most appropriate color for your situation will generally produce the best results.
Q: Why Do I Need A Special Lure For Ice Fishing?
Q: How To Choose The Best Color?
Q: Can I Reuse My Ice Fishing Lures?
You can reuse your fishing lures for as long as they remain stable and solid. As soon as they become damaged when it’s time to throw them away. You always need to bear in mind aspects like the color as if the color has faded then the lure might lose its effectiveness. It’s always wise to bring plenty of lures to your fishing trip just in case you have to throw them away.
Globo Surf Overview
Exactly what to put into your tackle box is a question that faces every angler before they head out on their fishing trip, one thing you need to ensure though is that you have a good amount of lures so that you can adapt to the conditions and have spares if any break.
Having the best rod and reel are vitally important to a successful fishing trip but you should never underestimate the importance of choosing the best fishing line and the right lure to go on the end of it. Without getting everything right you are unlikely to be able to catch the amount of fish that you’re looking for.
You also won’t catch much if you can’t stand the conditions either which is why wearing the appropriate clothes and the right ice fishing boots is always important as well. Once you have everything I place then you can send out your lure knowing what type you should be using, what fish you want to catch and what color it should be.
Once you have found your top rated fishing jigs then you can head out onto the ice with confidence knowing that you have all the boxes ticked in order to have a successful fishing trip. A lot about fishing comes down to knowledge and having the best lures available and using them correctly can be the difference between you going home unhappy or going home with the best catch that you’ve ever had.
More Ice Fishing Reviews:
- Ice Fishing Tip Ups
- Ice Fishing Bibs
- Ice Fishing Flashers
- Ice Augers For Fishing
- Ice Fishing Rods
- Ice Fishing Heaters
- Ice Fishing Line
- Ice Fishing Shelters
- Ice Fishing Reels
- Ice Fishing Gloves
- Ice Fishing Boots
- Ice Fishing Suits