How to Carry Your Ice Fishing Gear

Written by Dane in Fishing
Image Credits: Pixabay.com

After reading about how much gear is required for ice fishing, I became curious about the right way to hold and carry all of it throughout the trip. 

So, I did some research to get some more information about some good techniques for a safe and easy ice fishing adventure.

How should you carry your ice fishing gear? The best way to carry your ice fishing gear is to use bags with shoulder straps and buckets with handles. Alternatively, you can pack all of your equipment onto a snowmobile or similar vehicle in the same way.

When going on an ice fishing trip, it is no secret that you will need to bring a lot of gear with you. 

Contrary to a regular fishing trip in the summer, it will require many specialized tools throughout your journey.

How to Carry Ice Fishing Gear

With the long list of equipment that is required for a successful ice fishing trip, it is important to pack and carry all of your gear correctly to avoid any problems while you are out on the ice.

Take a look at the quick and easy steps that are briefly listed below, or keep reading for more details on how to carry your ice fishing gear.

What Is Needed To Carry Ice Fishing Gear:

  • Bag for rod storage (with a shoulder strap)
  • 5-gallon plastic bucket

How To Pack and Carry Ice Fishing Gear:

  1. Carefully place your rods into the bag and enclose them
  2. Place your remaining gear into the 5-gallon bucket
  3. Put the strap over your shoulder, carrying the bag over your shoulder
  4. Hold the bucket by the handle in one hand
  5. Hold any remaining gear in your other hand, dragging it behind you

The first thing you will need to pack away for your ice fishing trip is obviously your fishing rods

Whether you have just one of these tools or multiple, you will need to keep them safe in some kind of bag that will fit them comfortably.

It is important that the rods are held securely in place and are not bent or damaged in any way during travel. 

With that being said, it is ideal that your storage bag has a shoulder strap for added convenience while you are carrying it.

The second most important piece of holding equipment will be your 5-gallon plastic bucket. 

This is a very versatile tool that will be used for a variety of purposes throughout your ice fishing trip.

Especially when it comes to packing and carrying your gear, you will be able to place a few items into this bucket for easy handling while you are walking across the ice.

How to Carry Ice Fishing Gear on a Snowmobile

Another way to carry ice fishing gear during your trip is to use an automated vehicle such as a snowmobile. 

If you have access to one of these, the process of carrying your gear back and forth from each location will be significantly easier.

How To Pack and Carry Ice Fishing Gear With a Snowmobile:

  1. Strap your 5-gallon bucket(s) on the back of the snowmobile
  2. Fill the buckets with any additional gear that will fit inside of them
  3. Strap a large, durable storage container onto the top of the snowmobile
  4. Store your larger gear (including fishing poles) inside of container
  5. Place any remaining gear in front of the windshield

Packing and carrying your ice fishing gear using a snowmobile is very similar to the process that was outlined in the previous section. 

After packing your rods and equipment into bags and buckets, you will simply strap them onto the vehicle instead of holding them in your hands.

Using this method, there is no need for heavy lifting or dragging any additional equipment over the ice. 

Additionally, you will be able to get across the ice to different areas much faster than you would be able to on foot.

What Kind of Gear is Needed For an Ice Fishing Trip?

When the topic of packing and carrying ice fishing gear comes up, it is important to know what you can actually expect to bring on your trip. The short list below will outline the essential ice fishing gear for any adventure.

Ice Fishing Gear Essentials:

  1. Winter clothing
  2. Life vest
  3. Ice fishing rod
  4. Ice auger and skimmer
  5. 5-gallon bucket
  6. Ice jigs (assorted)
  7. Ice picks

The most obvious gear that is required for ice fishing is winter clothing. 

With harsh winter conditions including snow, ice, and freezing water, you will need to cover yourself with large coats, snow pants, boots, and any other pieces of clothing that will help you stay as warm as possible.

Additionally, you will need to protect yourself with a life vest over your winter clothing, in the event that you accidentally fall into the water beneath you.

An ice fishing rod is shorter than a regular summer fishing rod, due to the fact that it will be cast into a small hole created in the ice. 

These type of fishing poles can be made of wood or plastic.

Jigging rods are also classified as ice fishing rods, which are more similar to the regular ones. They are, however, lighter and shorter.

Ice augers and skimmers are some of the most important pieces of equipment that can be used on an ice fishing trip. 

When used together, they serve the purpose of creating holes in the ice and scooping the excess slush out of the water in order to clear your fishing path.

The 5-gallon bucket, as mentioned before, serves a variety of purposes throughout a single ice fishing trip. 

The first and most obvious purpose of the 5 gallon bucket is to hold the fish that you catch in the ice.

Before that, you willl be able to flip it over and take a seat while you cast your line and reel in your catches for a more comfortable waiting period.

No matter how you choose to pack and carry your ice fishing gear, it is important that you follow these guidelines for the easiest, safest, and most convenient trip possible.

Where is the best place to purchase ice fishing gear?

Although there are many retailers that offer ice fishing gear, you will most likely have the best luck shopping with a trusted store such as Bass Pro Shops or Cabelas. While shopping online can be convenient at times, it is always better to be able to try out your gear and assess the quality in person before making the purchase.

When is the best time to purchase ice fishing gear on sale or clearance?

Contrary to popular belief, ice fishing gear will experience the best deals and sales in the Spring, directly after the season is over at the end of February. There are still sales present in the Summer time, but all of the most desirable gear has often been cleared out by this time by the Spring crowd.

What is the average cost of an ice fishing trip as far as gear and equipment?

Depending on where you choose to shop for your ice fishing gear as well as the quality of the items you purchase, you can expect to spend anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000 in total for everything you need. Therefore, it is helpful to find sales for ice fishing gear as well as items on clearance, as described in the previous question.

About Dane

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