Although it may sound strange, fishing can be as exciting and great during the winter as it is during warm, summer days. The key is to find proper cold-weather fishing gear and the best cold-weather fishing apparel that will keep you warm.
This article will help you by listing all the things you’ll need to have with you for your fishing trip during winter or your ice fishing trip, so you could fully enjoy the experience.
Cold Weather Fishing Apparel
Cold weather and low temperatures may sound appalling, but if you have proper clothing, there shouldn’t be any problems. In this part of the article we’ll go through all the items you’ll need to keep you warm, no matter how cold the outside is.
1. Base Layer
This clothing layer has two tasks. The first is to keep your body heat trapped, and the second one is to remove the moisture from your skin and allow it to evaporate, this way helping you stay warm. If the sweat stays and dries on your skin, you’ll lose temperature.
2. Proper Socks
Fishing is a waiting game, so you won’t be moving a lot around the area. This means your feet could easily get cold, and this way it could spread along your body. That’s why you’ll need a pair of insulated socks. You could also combine a pair of thin socks to remove the moisture with thicker, insulating socks that will keep you warm.
3. Middle Layer
The middle layer will keep your body warm and prevent the outside cold from reaching in. For your upper body, it is recommended to go with a hoodie, preferably polyester-made as it provides better water resistance than cotton, and it dries faster. You could combine it with a sweatshirt. When it comes to your legs, jeans could be alright, as long as the weather won’t be wet, but any winter pants will do.
Winter could be windy, so you’ll need something to keep the wind and cold out. Don’t aim for thicker jackets; look for the one that has a waterproof membrane to keep you dry. The more doesn’t necessarily mean the better. Down jackets are good choices.
5. Overalls Or Fishing Bibs
Ice fishing bibs will keep the wind and the cold away from your body. They are great to keep your lower back and stomach warm, along with your legs. Many fishermen prefer them when compared to pants, so you should at least think about bibs.
The most important thing about winter fishing boots is their insulation. They should keep your feet dry by preventing the moisture from getting in, but they should also have a membrane that will let the sweat evaporate.
Finding the best fishing gloves that will not just keep you warm and dry, but will also allow to you fully use your fingers, maybe tricky and complicated, and it may take some time to find the ones that fit you the best. You could also combine thick and thin, but basically, go with anything that works for you. Try different things until you find the best one, and then stick to it.
8. Keep Your Head Warm
This is most often individual, but even if you don’t normally use a head cap, you should think about bringing something to keep your head warm as you won’t be moving. You could use whatever cap you like, or you could check this article.
9. Face Mask
Unless it’s extremely cold, you may not need a face mask, but you should think about having it within a hand reach just in case the temperature drops, or the wind starts to blow. However, it is extremely useful if you plan to go winter boat fishing because it will keep your face away from wind damage. Be careful, though, to get the one with a vent to prevent your sunglasses from getting foggy.
10. Hand Warmers
Sometimes the gloves will not be enough, or if you simply love to feel not just comfortable but pleasant, purchasing hand warmers is a good option. You’ll have to heat them before you reach your destination, but once they are warm, you shouldn’t worry about coldness for at least 4 hours. You could also get foot warmers that work the same way.
11. Extra Clothes
This is completely up to you, but at least think about it. During your winter fishing trip, you’ll be near the water. Low temperatures combined with water result in ice, so it could be really slippery, and one mistake could lead to you in the water. Spare clothes will let you be ready so, even if something does happen, you won’t have to cut your trip short. Again, it is completely up to you, but you should give it a thought.
A full belly means your body will have more “fuel” to heat itself. That’s why you should always have some high-energy snack with you and a stash at your winter camp.
Not many things will warm you up like a warm coffee or tea. You could check out these Camelbak bottles to find the insulated one that will keep the drink warm for a longer period of time.
14. Ice Augers
If the body of water is frozen and all the fish are below, the ice auger will be your best friend. Check our article about the best ice augers and find the one that suits you.
Cold Weather Fishing Gear
Besides the clothes, you should pay special attention to your fishing gear. It may cost a bit extra, but it will be worth it.
Start by turning up your reel. Make sure it works properly. You could take it to a professional to help you if you don’t know-how. If you don’t have one, check our reel list and find the one you like.
For winter fishing any ice fishing line will do just fine, so you’ll only have to find the one that you love the most. Also, inspect your fishing line regularly to prevent the water that collects on a line from freezing up.
This is the time when you should turn to live bait instead of lures. The reason hides in the fact that, as the water temperature drops, fish starts to move slower, same as live bait, unlike lures that will move quickly and could scare the fish. If you decide to stay faithful to lures, check this list of the best ice fishing lures.
Globo Surf Overview
Winter fishing is an amazing activity, and this guide will help you get the most out of it, without risking frostbite. Be responsible and you’ll stay safe enough to have fun.