Top Ice Fishing Lures For Success On The Frozen Lake

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Explore different types of ice fishing lures like jigging spoons and soft plastic baits. Find the right lures for walleye, , northern pike, and crappie.

Types of Ice Fishing Lures

Jigging Spoons

Jigging spoons are a popular choice among ice anglers for their versatility and effectiveness in attracting fish. These lures are designed to mimic injured baitfish, enticing predatory fish to strike. They come in a variety of sizes and colors, allowing anglers to match the hatch and target specific species. Jigging spoons are used with an up-and-down motion to create a fluttering action that triggers strikes.

Soft Plastic Baits

Soft plastic baits have gained popularity in recent years due to their lifelike appearance and realistic movement in the water. These lures come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, including minnows, worms, and insects. Anglers can customize their presentation by adding scent or attractants to the soft plastic baits. When fishing with soft plastics, it is important to use light jig heads to achieve a natural-looking presentation.

Blade Baits

Blade baits are another effective option for ice fishing, especially when targeting aggressive fish like walleye and pike. These lures feature a thin, flat metal blade that vibrates and flashes in the water, mimicking the movement of a wounded baitfish. Blade baits can be jigged vertically or cast out and retrieved horizontally. The key to success with blade baits is to vary the retrieve speed to find what triggers the most strikes.

Tungsten Jigs

Tungsten jigs are a favorite among ice anglers for their compact size and heavy weight, allowing them to sink quickly and reach the desired depth. These jigs are ideal for fishing in deep water or when targeting finicky fish that are holding near the bottom. Tungsten jigs come in a wide range of colors and styles, including tear-drop, round, and tube jigs. Anglers can tip them with live bait or soft plastics to enhance their appeal to fish.


Considerations for Choosing Ice Fishing Lures

When it comes to ice fishing, choosing the right lures can make all the difference between a successful day on the ice or going home empty-handed. There are several key considerations to keep in mind when selecting the perfect lures for your next ice fishing adventure.

Size and Weight

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing ice fishing lures is the size and weight of the lure. The size of the lure will determine the type of fish you are targeting, with larger lures typically attracting bigger fish like Northern Pike, while smaller lures are more suitable for species like Perch. The weight of the lure also plays a crucial role in how it performs in the water, with heavier lures sinking faster and reaching deeper depths.

When selecting the size and weight of your ice fishing lures, it’s essential to consider the depth of the water you will be fishing in, as well as the feeding habits of the fish you are targeting. Matching the size and weight of your lure to the specific conditions of the lake or river you are fishing in can greatly increase your chances of success.

Color and Visibility

The color and visibility of your ice fishing lures can also have a significant impact on their effectiveness. Fish are attracted to certain colors based on their natural prey and the conditions of the water they are swimming in. Bright, vibrant colors like red, orange, and chartreuse are often more visible in murky or dark water, while more natural colors like green, brown, and black can be more effective in clear water.

Consider the visibility of your ice fishing lures based on the weather conditions and time of day you will be fishing. Bright colors may be more visible on sunny days, while darker colors may be more effective during overcast or early morning hours. Experimenting with different colors and observing how fish respond can help you determine the best options for your specific fishing situation.

Action and Movement

The action and movement of your ice fishing lures can also play a crucial role in attracting fish and enticing them to strike. Different types of lures, such as jigs, spoons, and blade baits, have unique actions that mimic the movements of natural prey, making them more appealing to fish. Pay attention to how your lures move in the water and adjust your technique accordingly to maximize their effectiveness.

Experiment with different retrieval speeds, jerks, and pauses to create lifelike movements that will entice fish to bite. Varying the action of your lures can help you determine what triggers the best response from the fish in your area, leading to more successful ice fishing outings.

Durability and Quality

When selecting ice fishing lures, it’s essential to consider their durability and quality to ensure they can withstand the harsh conditions of ice fishing. Cold temperatures, sharp ice, and aggressive fish can all take a toll on your lures, so choosing high-quality, durable lures is essential for long-term success.

Look for lures made from strong materials like tungsten or durable plastics that can withstand repeated use without breaking or losing their effectiveness. Inspect your lures regularly for signs of wear and tear, and replace any damaged lures to maintain their performance on the ice.


Techniques for Using Ice Fishing Lures

Jigging

Jigging is a classic ice fishing technique that involves moving the lure up and down in the water to mimic the movement of prey. By jerking the rod in a quick, rhythmic motion, you can create an enticing motion that attracts fish. Different types of lures work well for jigging, such as jigging spoons and tungsten jigs. The key to successful jigging is to vary the speed and depth of your movements to find what the fish are responding to on any given day.

Deadsticking

Deadsticking is a more passive approach to ice fishing that involves simply leaving the lure in one place and waiting for the fish to come to you. This technique is great for when the fish are being more cautious or are less active. Soft plastic baits or blade baits are often used for deadsticking, as their natural movement in the water can entice nearby fish to strike. Patience is key with deadsticking, as it can take time for the fish to notice your bait.

Trolling

Trolling is a technique commonly used in open water fishing, but it can also be adapted for ice fishing. By slowly moving your lure behind a moving vehicle or manually pulling it along, you can cover more ground and increase your chances of attracting fish. Blade baits and larger jigs are often used for trolling, as their size and movement can attract larger predatory fish. Trolling can be a more active approach to ice fishing, requiring you to constantly monitor your lure and adjust your speed and depth accordingly.

Tip-ups

Tip-ups are a unique ice fishing tool that allows you to fish multiple holes at once without having to actively hold a rod. A tip-up consists of a spool of line attached to a flag that pops up when a fish takes the bait. This allows you to fish hands-free and cover more area on the ice. Tip-ups are commonly used for targeting larger fish species like northern pike, as they allow for a more natural presentation of bait. Setting up multiple tip-ups with different types of lures can increase your chances of success on the ice.


Best Ice Fishing Lures for Different Fish Species

Walleye

When it comes to targeting Walleye during ice fishing season, choosing the right lure can make all the difference. Walleye are known for their elusive nature, so it’s important to use lures that can attract their attention and entice them to bite. One of the most popular lures for Walleye is the jigging spoon. These lures have a fluttering action that mimics injured baitfish, making them irresistible to hungry Walleye. Soft plastic baits are another great option for targeting Walleye. These baits come in a variety of colors and sizes, allowing you to match the hatch and effectively mimic the baitfish that Walleye are feeding on. Blade baits are also effective for catching Walleye, as their vibrating action can trigger aggressive strikes. Lastly, tungsten jigs are a favorite among ice anglers for targeting Walleye, as their small profile and heavy weight allow them to quickly get down to where the fish are holding.

  • Jigging Spoons
  • Soft Plastic Baits
  • Blade Baits
  • Tungsten Jigs

Perch

Perch are another popular species to target during the ice fishing season, and choosing the right lure can greatly increase your chances of success. When it comes to Perch, small jigs are often the go-to lure choice. These lures can be tipped with live bait or small soft plastics to entice finicky Perch into biting. Ice anglers also have success using tiny spoons for Perch, as their erratic action can trigger strikes from these schooling fish. Blade baits are another effective option for targeting Perch, especially when fished vertically in deeper water. Lastly, tungsten jigs are a favorite among Perch anglers, as their small size and heavy weight allow for precise presentations in the water column where Perch are feeding.

  • Small Jigs
  • Tiny Spoons
  • Blade Baits
  • Tungsten Jigs

Northern Pike

Northern Pike are known for their aggressive nature, making them a thrilling species to target during ice fishing season. When it comes to selecting lures for Northern Pike, larger options are often the most effective. Large spoons are a popular choice for targeting Pike, as their flashy, erratic action can trigger strikes from these apex predators. Soft plastic swimbaits are also effective for Northern Pike, as their lifelike swimming action can entice big Pike into biting. Blade baits are another great option for targeting Northern Pike, especially when fished near the bottom where Pike are often found lurking. Lastly, large jigging minnows are a favorite among ice anglers for targeting big Pike, as their realistic profile and enticing action can provoke aggressive strikes.

  • Large Spoons
  • Soft Plastic Swimbaits
  • Blade Baits
  • Large Jigging Minnows

Crappie

Crappie are a popular species to target during the ice fishing season, and choosing the right lure can make a big difference in your success. When it comes to Crappie, small jigs are often the most effective lure choice. These jigs can be tipped with live bait or soft plastics to mimic the small insects and baitfish that Crappie feed on. Tiny spoons are also effective for targeting Crappie, as their fluttering action can attract these finicky fish. Blade baits are another great option for catching Crappie, especially when fished in deeper water where Crappie are often found suspending. Lastly, tungsten jigs are a favorite among ice anglers for targeting Crappie, as their small size and heavy weight allow for precise presentations to entice bites.

  • Small Jigs
  • Tiny Spoons
  • Blade Baits
  • Tungsten Jigs

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