As the calendar moves deeper into December the temptation to be out on the ice grows. Hopefully the ambition is as thick as the frozen surface you are about to head out onto.
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If you are living in, or traveling to, some northern states — Michigan, North Dakota and Minnesota, specifically — there are plenty of lakes with 4-6 inches of safe ice by late November. Always verify the thickness but, there is already plenty of fishing to be had.
When it comes to ice fishing, these three tips will help you in your pursuits:
Be mindful of others
This is especially important when setting up. Many times, there is a hotspot or a place where the “bite” is known to be good and many people could be setting up in a small area. Try not to set up too close to anyone and be courteous of others.
Be aware of your noise
The shallower the water, the quieter you should be.
Change out your jigs and baits.
Often times, there is a certain type of bait or jig fish are biting on and you may need to do some trial and error to figure out what the fish are currently most susceptible too.
There are plenty of states in the country that ice fishing just isn’t very likely. So, folks from Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee or Texas are probably going to have to travel to enjoy the sport. Make sure that you are complying with local regulations and have an ice fishing license before you go out.
Explore our guide to the best ice fishing rods and find the perfect one for your needs.