How Long Should Ice Fishermen Stay on One Hole

It’s the age old question, how long should ice fisherman stay on one hole?

This subject obviously has some gray areas. Our personal fishing style as well as the daily situation affects exactly when to make the call. Are we fishing for big fish? Trying to catch fish for dinner? Showing the ropes to an in-law in town for the weekend? First time on this lake? Additionally, how many days are we fishing? Are we fishing a flat, a rock pile or a basin? How is the weather? Each of these answers lengthens or shortens a fuse in our head that goes off at some point after the sonar goes blank.

Research

That timer starts to tick while researching a trip to a lake. If a guide, friend, or online report says the fish are biting, the team will likely want to hop around until we can recreate that level of action. Rarely does the first spot knock the top off our expectations. No one ever fully trusts reports, so anything in the ballpark is a good sign that we should stay in the area. Again, it poses the question, how long should ice fisherman stay on one hole?

Conditions

If a cold front moves through, or we are looking specifically for big fish, then an hour at a spot without seeing a mark might be more applicable. As expectations drop to a handful of bites a day, we scrutinize every encounter. The team focuses on presenting a perfect presentation with a reliable bait and goes from there. We have seen enough tough fishing days to know that the bite is likely off everywhere, so we dig in.

A one-day trip to a lake is the toughest. Trying to balance learning about the lake with actually landing a few fish makes the whole process compressed. No one remembers the tough days of a five-day trip, where one or two days were off the charts. But somehow, we still expect every Saturday to be the best day of the year.

Preparation

Anything that makes the next few minutes efficient makes it easier to move to the next spot. Sturdy racks and accessories on your snow machine make grabbing the auger and extra shelters easy. The thicker fabric on the Clam X200 Pro reduces the days where we setup and light a heater. Sometimes, carrying fewer rods means less time fiddling with tangles and rod cases. Two or three small tackle boxes organized under the seat means they do not flop around. A small console keeps everything else at hand.

 

 

 

To read the full article with in-depth breakdowns of each factor and consideration visit our icebreakers.com site here.