How Much Line Do You Need on Ice Fishing Reels?

Are you going on an ice fishing activity this weekend? Find out how much fishing line do you need for your ice fishing reels. Ice fishing is kind of different from the usual fishing activity because of the weather and the temperature. It may affect the amount of fishing line that you need.

When it comes to ice fishing, you would generally go between 3 to 36 feet of water or 1 to 12 yards of water. You’d also have to consider the number of times you’re going to “break off” and have the need to retie the fishing line. For these unforeseen conditions, you want to add at least an additional 2 yards for every trip. Therefore, it’s safe to buy 50 to 110 yards of ice fishing line that you can use on two reels (25 yards each.)

Do you want to know more about ice fishing? Then, you have come to the right place. We will give you the most fundamental tips that you need to know for your first ice fishing trip. From ice fishing lines, reels, and tips to help you catch a fish. Before we start diving in, here are the things that you need for ice fishing.

What Do You Need for Ice Fishing?

Compared to standard fishing, ice fishing is a little bit more challenging. Three primary reasons most people don’t try ice fishing is because it’s too cold, they think it’s more expensive and more complicated. However, ice fishing is still an enjoyable experience that you should try. If it’s your first time doing ice fishing, here are the things that you need to start this fun-filled activity.

  1. Ice Rods. Yes, there are specific rods, lines, and reels for ice fishing. Typically, Ice Rods are 24 to 36 inches long is enough for hovering into a 6 to 8 inches hole in the ice. You can pick longer ice rods of about 40 to 48 inches if you want more distance from the ice pit and when targeting wary fish in shallow water.
  2. Ice Reels. These are ultralight reels designed for ice fishing, which are less expensive compared to their counterparts. Meanwhile, round “straight line” reels are almost the same as standard fishing reels. 
  3. Ice Fishing Line. When it comes to ice fishing, you have to scale down your fishing line to 4, 3, or 2-pound test. It is because fish species below the ice are more sluggish, and they don’t put up a hard fight compared to other fish in warm water conditions. 
  4. Rod Holders. These tools are useful and come handy for elevating your rod and reel for easy positioning over the ice hole. 
  5. Terminal Tackle. You can carry a supply of split shot weights in varying sizes. These weights are essential for releasing your baited hooks and light jigs down quickly. Choosing the right weight also depends on your hooks and baits.
  6. Jigs. Downsized jigs depend on your preference. More often, you can use it in conjunction with either live bait or small soft plastic baits. Make sure to match your jog and hook size according to your bait and prey. 
  7. Live Baits. Baits used in ice fishing is, often, the same with standard fishing. For example, waxes, minnows, and mousies remain to be universally useful for any types of fish species. 
  8. Artificial Lures. You can use a tiny soft plastic lures that come in different shapes and combine them with jigs or trailers. 
  9. Electronics. You can use some portable depth sounders to make your ice fishing more productive and fun. A portable depth sounder works like a GPS tracking with multiple screen capabilities. You can also add some underwater cameras to your ice fishing arsenal to get another dimension, fun, and excitement.
  10. Auger. Ice augers look like spiral cutting tools that will help you make holes in the ice. They have become affordable over the years. Ice drills also come in Laser blades for cutting through ice more efficiently than those with conventional razors. 
    1. Size of Augers. They come in different sizes ranging from 8 inches in diameter and more extensive. Take note that smaller-diameter drills are a lot more convenient to use. However, they can only create smaller holes.
    2. Gasoline VS Battery-Powered Augers. There’s not much difference between these two augers aside from their power source. Both of them eliminates the physical labor in cutting holes. 
  11. Seat or Bucket. They may sound simple, but most ice fishermen forget about this material. A five-gallon bucket would be versatile enough to carry pieces of your equipment. You can use it to carry your gear, rest your rods, or keep your caught fish. 
  12. Pliers and Forceps. These tools come handy for removing hooks from fish. They also secure a split shot to your line.

How Much Fishing Line Do Reels Hold?

There’s no concrete answer to this question because it all depends on the size of your fishing reel and the type of fishing line that you’re going to use. Most fishing reels will tell you how much of each kind of fishing line it can hold. More often, as a rule of thumb, you have to stop once you’re fishing line reach 1/4 inch from the edge of the spool.

The issue lies between the fishing rod and fishing line. It’s because most rods would always recommend using 200 yards of fishing line. However, most of them only come in 150 to 300 yards of spools. So, when this situation occurs, the best way to fix it is to use a filler line first before attaching the fishing line.

Do You Need Special Line for Ice Fishing?

Technically, you may want to use a specific ice fishing line for your next ice fishing trip. In choosing the best ice fishing line, you want to make sure that it is undetectable underwater. It means that you want to opt for cooler colors like dark green and blue. Most expert ice fishermen prefer using fluorocarbon fishing lines because they are much stronger and more abrasion-resistant compared to monofilament fishing lines.


How Deep Should I Ice Fish?

When it comes to ice fishing, you would generally go between 3 to 36 feet of water or 1 to 12 yards of water. Some ice fishermen step out to fish deep mid-lake basins with healthy vegetation such as cabbage. They offer the perfect mixture of food and oxygen for attracting various fish species.

How Thick Should Ice Be to Ice Fish?

The ice thickness for ice fishing is usually 150 feet where you will standby. Ice water doesn’t have the same depth on a single body of water. Some are two feet thicker in one place, while some parts have one-inch thick. Some factors like temperature, snow cover, currents, springs, and rough fish also affect the safety of the ice.

Is Ice Fishing Dangerous?

Just like any other activity, ice fishing can be dangerous if you don’t do it right. First of all, either you or your vehicle is more prone to gall if it’s too thin. Other risks involve carbon monoxide poisoning, which comes from improper use of heaters and frostbite that comes from exposure to the cold and wind. You may also get required in minor accidents when using your tools. Therefore, it’s essential to put your complete focus and do ice fishing with care.

Final Words

For your next fishing trip, make sure that you’re completely ready and knowledgeable about this activity. Ice fishing can be different from the standard fishing, so you should always follow precautions and other safety tips. More often, ice fishing would go between 3 to 36 feet of water or 1 to 12 yards of water. Therefore, it’s safe if you could use 50 to 110 yards of ice fishing line that you can use on two ice reels. For some unforeseen conditions like break off, you want to add at least an additional 2 yards for every trip.

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