As the ice slowly closes in around our favorite lake each year, it's only a matter of time until we start to drool over our ice fishing gear. We all need a solid rod and reel combo to get started, an auger, and the proper clothing for sure, but eventually when we get our lines wet we want to know that the offering dangling down there in that hole is the best option.
Certainly, every ice fisherman out there will need to know what these options are based on species, but we have something here for everyone. Once the windchill drops and the only thing between you and an empty creel is your own ability, it's nice to know that you can count on some of these to change the day in your favor.
Since it's never a bad time to brush up on the latest and the best pieces of fishing gear to own, it stands to reason that you're ready to see what would work the best for you. With that in mind, here are the six best icing fishing jigs we could find and a little advice on how to use them.
Laxygo Winter Metal Kit
Grub-like jigs work great for a variety of areas and conditions, and you don't really need to overthink it. This package of a dozen comes in at a little more than $1 per jig, and we think it's alright to go on the less expensive side for these. The beauty of these jigs is how versatile they are. No matter how you plan to fish the ice, these are almost always capable of catching a fish. And, they aren't exclusive to ice fishing. You can have success year round with these jigs, whether you're targeting crappie, panfish, walleyes, bass, or perch.
Rapala Jigging Rap
It's a tried and true legend for good reason. The Jigging Rap from Rapala helps bring a lot of fish to anglers' hands during the cold, frozen months. Jig it just like you think you should, with a bouncing motion, and get ready for the strike. This is an all-time favorite among ice fishermen, largely thanks to its wide variety of applications. Thanks to its action, it'll essentially swim in circles for you, which is ideal when you're targeting suspended fish under the ice. However, its balanced, weighted profile offers it versatility that surely translates to open water.
Dynamic Lures HD
Sometimes the best ice fishing jig looks a bit different. This color is known as "Ice," but the Dynamic Lures HD Jigging Lure can really work wonders in any pattern. One of the most versatile ice fishing lures to ever exist, as a deadly combination of sound and action simply produces results down under the ice where we can't see or hear anything. Meant for a vertical jigging approach, this lure is great for panfish, but its action can also land you plenty of trout.
Northland Fishing Tackle Buck-Shot Rattle Spoon
You can't go wrong with a spoon-style jig like the Buck-Shot Rattle Spoon, a favorite of Minnesota and Wisconsin ice anglers. Jig it around underwater structure and you'll see some action, almost guaranteed. Flashes and flutters are complemented by a flawless, built-in rattle, sure to attract fish from far, far away. Once they're in close enough to strike, they won't be able to resist the lifelike holographic 3D BaitFish Image finish.
Clam Outdoors Genz Drop-Kick Jig
Small in stature but big on results, the Genz Drop-Kick Jig was designed, tested, and approved by Dave Genz. It's made of tungsten and has a drop-kicking motion that rocks your live or plastic bait back and forth. The tungsten is 30 percent heavier than lead, and the 90-degree long-shank jig hook is great for packing larvae. Combine these qualities and you have yourself a top-notch ice fishing rig.
Lindy Quiver Spoon
Lindy has been a long-running name in the fishing biz, and the Quiver Spoon is probably their best-known ice fishing workhorse. The swimming action and impressive flash will attract the most sluggish fish.
It seems like every time we talk about ice fishing season it's just beginning, but the fact is that it just doesn't last very long. Virtually any of these baits can be used by themselves or tipped with live bait or dead bait.
When it comes to vertically jigging a lure for winter fishing through a hole in the ice, spoons, spinners, and crankbaits fill the bill quite well. Never give up trying to find out what it is that the fish are after when you find yourself out on the hard water.
Any solid spoon or weighted jig can dredge up most of the sportfish species we target including pike and walleye. The smaller versions sometimes need help getting through the slush in the hole, so in that case some folks like to reel the jig almost to the rod tip and use it to thrust the bait through the hole before releasing it.
Heavier baits, particularly ones made from tungsten, have a knack for getting down to the bottom faster and creating a lot of bottom bouncing silt to create the effect of a feeding frenzy. Anyone who has ice fished long enough will know that theres a lot to being successful in some cases, but anybody can do it.
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