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Cool Ideas: Ice Fishing Equipment & Safety in New Hampshire

Cool Ideas: Ice Fishing Equipment & Safety in New Hampshire

One of the most rewarding winter activities is to go ice fishing in Wolfeboro on the world-famous Lake Winnipesaukee. New Hampshire ice fishing is a fun activity that doesn’t require a lot of skill or knowledge, but can be enhanced when you gain some experience and experiment with some of the latest tools. It pays to take some time to learn the basics about the best ice fishing equipment and safety gear before you venture out onto the ice for the first time. If you are interested in renting fishing tackle in New Hampshire for a first-time ice fishing excursion, make sure to stop by The Hole in the Wall in Wolfeboro, where you’ll not only get the equipment you need, but you can also get some great tips from our friendly staff.

Where to Fish?
A visit to your local bait shop for ice fishing equipment and bait can also yield you some insight into ice thickness and other useful tips that will help you with New Hampshire ice fishing. While insight from locals is a great way to go when you are new to ice fishing in Wolfeboro and the surrounding area, it also pays to have a good contour map that will show you the variations in depth changes and drop offs hiding in Lake Winnipesaukee that can help you increase your luck. Even if you aren’t new to ice fishing, but are new to our local lake, these tips and a good map will help you get started.

Underwater video cameras and other electronic ice fishing equipment can also be helpful if you aren’t having any luck at known spots or in finding your own favorite spot. With a video camera, you won’t just see that there are fish, but you’ll be able to see their behavior, how they react to the bait, what actions get them to bite, and the type of weeds or habitat that they are hanging out in under the ice. Write down your observations and results, so you will know what is working the next time you go ice fishing in Wolfeboro. Try new types of fishing tackle in New Hampshire as well, working your way through the options until you find what gives you the best results.

Ice Fishing Safety Equipment
While most people think about personal flotation devices and other safety equipment when out on the water in a boat or fishing off the shore, it is also important to include safety equipment when you start preparing your gear for New Hampshire ice fishing. You should have a life jacket. Make sure that it is a U.S. Coast Guard approved PFD and that everyone in your fishing party has one. A flotation rescue rope is also a must-have, which can be tossed to someone who falls through thin ice from a safe distance. Ice cleats are also very helpful. They attach to your boots and feature metal spikes that give you traction on the ice.

An ice chisel is something that is recommended for ice fishing in Wolfeboro, as it can be used to help chip away at thin ice when fishing. However, it is also a great idea to have as a precursor to using an auger, allowing you to punch a hole through the ice to check thickness before you stand on it or start drilling. That being said, ice safety picks should also be worn around your neck to keep them within reach. If you fall through the ice, they can be stuck into the ice and used to help pull yourself back up out of the freezing water.

Cold Weather Gear for Ice Fishing
Ice fishing equipment should also include gear designed to help keep you warm. An ice fishing or flotation suit is designed to keep you warm and help you get out if you fall into the ice. It is important to wear a hat to retain as much body heat as possible. Thick hats that are designed to also cover your ears are best for this type of situation. Layer the rest of your clothing in order to stay warm. Bring an extra set of clothing and keep it in a safe, dry place, just in case you do fall in the water or in case your clothes get wet.

In addition to keeping your head and ears warm, you also need to make an effort to keep your hands warm during New Hampshire ice fishing. Mittens are actually better than gloves because they hold in more body heat. Many anglers wear base layer gloves underneath the mittens to give them the dexterity that they need to tie lines or remove fish from hooks, without exposing bare fingers to the cold air. In addition, many fishermen are now bringing self-heating hand warmers to use during the winter fishing season. They can be placed inside mittens or inside jacket pockets to provide extra warmth.

Visit The Hole in the Wall
If you are planning a trip to do some New Hampshire ice fishing this year, stop by The Hole in the Wall bait and tackle shop to see our full line of ice fishing equipment and bait. You don’t need to bring anything with you, just show up and you can purchase or rent ice fishing tackle in New Hampshire at our local store. Lots of visitors come to the area each winter to try their hand at ice fishing, so we have a wide range of supplies available year-round. Give us a call at 603-569-HOLE (4653) to reserve tackle for ice fishing in Wolfeboro or to learn more about the products and rentals available at our Lake Winnipesaukee store.

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