If you love fishing, then you would be glad to know that you do not have to wait for the warm summer months and the open waters to engage in your favorite pastime. Fishing during the winter can be just as much fun especially if you opt for an ice fishing vacation.
There is of course the advantage of no flies or mosquitoes to bug or bite you as you fish in the winter cold. And there is no shortage of locations to do it – US, Canada, Germany, Russia, Ukraine, Poland and the Scandinavian countries all boast a strong ice fishing tradition.
But what is ice fishing? Well, picture yourself near a frozen lake or river during the winter on a crisp clear day. You pack your fishing gear and make your way to a spot atop the frozen ice surface. Drill a hole through the ice until you can see the water below. Use an ice chisel to widen the drilled hole a little more. With the fishing hole ready, prepare your line, lures, tip-ups and jigging rods then wait for fish to get caught. The basic process is that simple.
The art of ice fishing is however greatly hinged on knowing the precise location where you are most likely to catch fish. Modern gadgets can help you get to a margin of error of less than 20 feet off the perfect spot. Sport ice fishing has attracted such attention that there are many competitions during the winter. One of the largest ice fishing contests in the world takes place every January in Minnesota where more than 15000 anglers take part.
Before embarking on an ice fishing vacation, establish whether there are any licensing requirements. Licenses differ from country to country.