Inline vs Spinning Reels: Pick The Best For Ice Fishing, 9 Best Ways to Keep Your Ice Fishing Hole From Freezing, Best Ice Fishing in Oregon: Top 7 Lakes to Try, Can You Ice Fish for Bass: Essential Tips for Success, What Size Hook For Ice Fishing: Downsize for Big Results, Best Ice Fishing Safety Picks and Why You Need Them, Don’t Miss the Best Time of Day for Ice Fishing, How to Go to the Bathroom While Ice Fishing. Smaller fish are more prolific, so keep fish under 20 inches if allowed. If the fish is rubbing the line on the ice, to prevent the line from breaking, keep constant pressure on the fish by reeling and putting the rod tip under the ice. Native lake trout are remarkable fish and should be treated with care. Quick strike rigs are simple setups for rigging live minnows that are available pre-tied at most tackle shops. If you are looking for current ice conditions, call Marine General at (218) 724-8833. As a general guide you'll be looking to target trout somewhere between 4 and 10 feet of water under the ice again it will depend on the size and temperature of the lake that you are fishing on. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. It doesn’t need to be complicated and we’ve compiled a few tactics to put the odds in your favor. (9) Use small bait fish: The ideal bait fish size for trout is about 2”. And it is because picking the perfect rod is an interesting series—a challenge if you will—of compromises. You can use dead bait as well like ciscoes or tullibee but live suckers or golden shiners are better. Lake Trout: “Lake trout are large, aggressive predators,” Howe says. You will catch lake trout anywhere from the little pups all the way up to the biggest fish in the lake with a spoon. Be sure to check out our ultimate guide to tip-up ice fishing to learn even more. Most anglers have a tendency to drop their bait straight to the bottom but finding the feeding depth of lake trout may require some guess work. Also, lake trout are very sensitive to the water temperature. If you have a handy checklist of the basic tackle and gear to … Always start shallow and work your gear slowly down to the depths. Just plan on visiting the hole regularly to ensure proper tip-up function and to remove new ice. As avid anglers, Joshua and Kendle spend their days exploring the waters of the Pacific Northwest and aim to teach others the joy of fishing. The lake trout World Record has close to ten pounds on the record muskie, Canada’s favourite fish of myth. Be sure to not just focus on fishing near the bottom of the lake. These are the breeding stock that will replenish the fishery. Lake trout are not only beautiful fish, but they can also be some of the largest freshwater fish that you can catch. Tip-ups aren’t just for pike and walleye. For Lake Trout, try to stay in 30 to 60 feet and close to shore. Those are the exceptions so key in on structure in the 20 to 60 foot zone. Jigging’s erratic motion mimics wounded fish and is a tried-and-true method. Lake trout are one of the most popular fish among anglers in North America. So, hold the line steadily and strongly, resisting the trout’s effort to getaway. Know your local regulations before keeping fish to eat. Insulated tip-ups that cover the hole are ideal for a couple reasons. In the summer, the best method of fishing for them is trolling with lead core line or downriggers using minnows or a copper, white, or silver lure. FishingDuo.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Three icefishing experts share their go-to tactics for catching hard-water trophies You will need to go deeper as you get into the warmer seasons. Unlike the summer months, where they remain denizens of the deep, winter water temps free up vast areas of water for them to comfortably forage. Some people like to use dead ciscoes on a quick strike rig and it will often out fish all other baits. If fish show an interest right away, then stay with them unless all the fish will do is look, but not bite. Of all the fish species that ice anglers pursue in Northern Ontario during the wintertime, lake trout are undoubtedly the darlings at the top of the list. That makes learning how to ice fish for trout an ideal activity for a winter fishing trip. Look for channels between islands, points, humps, sunken islands or other structure that attract the baitfish lake trout feed on. Second, in the clear water that lake trout reside, a hole in the ice allows a beam of light to pierce the depths which can fend off wary fish. Look for breaks, points, reefs and humps in 20 to 60 feet of water. Ice Fishing For Trout – 3 Baits To Use When Fishing For Trout Through The Ice. Best Lake Trout Lures. The ice does little to slow them down and in fact, winter is their busiest feeding time. Bring a spud bar, rope, ice picks, and a buddy. We also use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use this website. So observes eastern Ontario trout guru Paul Shibata. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. Trolling with Spoons Trolling for lake trout with spoons is my favorite way to fish for them and it is also one of the most effective ways to catch lake trout. Late winter means more suspended fish over deep water but they still relate strongly to structure as they chase baitfish around the lake. Keep experimenting with minnow sizes or between dead and live bait. When it comes to effective ice-fishing presentations, most anglers overlook the fact that rainbows—and brook trout—are the top predators in these smaller backcountry lakes. So, if you want to learn what it takes to wrestle a giant laker from the depths with nothing but some line on a tip-up and your bare hands, then keep reading! One of the top lake trout fishing tips is knowing the best lake trout jigging lures to use. With that said, fishing for lake trout can be a humbling experience, but it can also be some of the most exciting fishing of your life. The lake trout dives and pulls before it can finally be pulled out. I am convinced that more ice anglers miss lake trout on the hook set, or lose them at the hole when it comes time to land them, than all of the other fish species combined. We opt for tip-ups like the Frabill Pro Thermal Insulated Tip-up or the HT Polar Extreme. The goal is to fish for the biters, not the lookers. If the fish sticks around it will be tough to fool. These freshwater fish have dark green bodies and pale yellow spots, and they love cold, deep lake water. It is not uncommon for them to chase schooling baitfish just below the ice, using the ice as a barrier to trap minnows as they scarf them down. Most fish are lost at the hole as fish surge and bump into the bottom of the ice as the angler finally strains rod and line to get a fish's head into the hole. “Number one, you have to have good electronics. With tip-ups, try suspending your bait 5 to 6 feet off the bottom. Lake trout like to trap bait fish. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. Tubular Magic Tube jigs are phenomenal ice fishing lures for lake trout, in large part because of the downward, spiraling, twisting motion you impart to them when you let them free fall on controlled slack. If you’re targeting lake trout, also nicknamed lakers, here is a list of 21 tips to help you catch a lot of them. Next time you are on the ice chasing lake trout, give it a try. Focus in on key structure like inside turns where baitfish congregate. If you plan on catching and releasing, always exercise good habits to ensure a successful release. Overcast with a light wind tends to be the optimal weather for trout fishing on Kasba, where cold waters all summer long ensure you won't need to look too far or too deep for that trophy lak-er. Start out by assembling the gear you need to go ice fishing for trout. A large trout can break the line by rubbing the edge of the ice. Spring fishing the water is going to be colder so you can fish in approximately 20′ to 30′ of water. Most of the time tip-ups should be baited with some sort of live minnow. These lakes offer an amazing Trout angling opportunity that can rival productive rivers and streams, as their forage and climate often produce larger and more abundant populations. Lake trout anglers often opt for heavy, 20 to 30 pound test, mono. Keep an eye on the wind as well. Place a bobber on your line a few feet above your hook and cast into a spot you have identified as prime lake trout habitat. That way the hook gets imbedded when you set it. Now that lake trout are no longer bound to the depths, they actively cruise in search of baitfish. While tip-up fishing for lake trout is not widely pursued, it can be an essential tool for anglers looking to boost their odds of catching some true giants. 1. As with most fish these lake trout will feed most heavily during the morning and evening hours. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. Every year thousands of anglers target lakers through the ice hoping for their chance to catch a trophy. Usually, the lake trout will dive three times before giving in. Learning how to fish for Trout in a lake is different than in a river or stream. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. The line of choice for most tip-ups is Dacron line. Due to overfishing, their natural population has been depleted, but they're commonly stocked in lakes from the midwestern US through Canada. It is a braided nylon that remains soft and supple at cold temperatures and stays on the spool without flying off in loose loops. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. Sometimes all the fish want is a piece of cut bait on a single hook. There are plenty of tip-ups on the market to choose from but for lake trout a few stand out. Yet, few anglers attempt to catch them on a tip-up. Where you find baitfish, you’ll find lake trout. But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. Lake trout are a staple among avid ice anglers for their beauty, size and delicious meat. Many lakes are stocked with Trout, and some even hold native populations. Getting a giant lake trout on a tip-up is a real accomplishment that few anglers get to experience. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Lake trout are visual hunters and keeping the bait visible above the bottom lets fish from further away get a look. Lake trout are built for cold water. Troutster Fly Fishing Youtube Channel. It is common to find lake trout fairly deep underwater, specifically in a range from 40 to 60 feet below. Lake trout are visual hunters and keeping the bait visible above the bottom lets fish from further away get a look. Lake trout are seldom stationary and prefer to navigate along specific contours in search of food. From upstate New York to the Rocky Mountains, lake trout are an apex predator on many lakes and reservoirs. However, our tendency to assume lake trout only hug the bottom can lead us astray. When the trout surfaces it is easy to swing a small trout onto the ice. This is mostly due to fish being a bit spooky in shallow water. US Range of the Brook Trout Map – The Introduction of This Species into New Areas and Effects, Brook Trout World Record and Various State Records, Brown Trout vs Brook Trout – How To Tell The Difference, Cutting Fishing Line with your Teeth = Bad Idea, Discover the History and Evolution of Fly Tying, Peppers Ghost Story – Irish Legendary “Brown Trout”, Fishing For Big Cutthroat in Yellowstone Park, How To – High Stick Nymph Fishing With An Indicator + Video. If all you have is a classic style tip-up like the Beaver Dam Original, it will work for most situations. Your email address will not be published. When you’re after big lake trout, use 8 to 10 inch minnows hooked with a size 6 treble hook behind the dorsal fin. Most of us grab our jigging rods and drop down flashy spoons and minnow mimics. Anything bigger will decrease your catch rate. We packed up and left the house early in the morning with the plan of hitting the ice as the sun came over the hill. 1. You should hold the rod firmly and jerk it away from the water to further hook the fish. Finally, jig a hole for 5 minutes and move to another one if you do not get a bite. A strong wind from the west can push the ice out into the middle of the lake. Lower Line 40-60 Feet Deep. In June, July, and August you'll typically catch lake trout at depths below 45 feet. Midwinter means lake trout for many ice anglers across North America. Limit the time fish are out of water to less than 30 seconds. Once your bobber jerks … Place your bait half-way down the water column. SELECT THE RIGHT TACKLE & GEAR. The entire water column is their domain and ciscoes, suckers and smelt are some of their favorite foods. 4.Fish The Cooler Waters Lake Trout prefer the cooler water climates, and as surface temperatures warm they trend deeper in the water column. When learning how to catch lake trout, it’s important to know that they prefer light lures so consider stocking up on small spinners and spoons. Let all the big fish go. Lake trout will keep moving to find these food sources. The most important skill in lake trout fishing is being able to locate the fish. You should not loose too many fish with good technique. These top-of-the-line predators are fast and powerful, a fish that can actually become more active under the ice. 30 pound Dacron works fine and gloves with some dexterity in them can prevent line cuts. Most of those missed strikes (which aren't missed strikes at all) can become fish on the ice if you go on point the minute you feel a trout slash. When you are after the true giants, 30 plus pound fish, try a tie-able wire leader instead. Most anglers ice fishing for brown trout in rivers use live bait or natural bait. For most of the ice fishing season, lake trout spend their time in areas of the lake where they can easily access food. Most of the time, a 3 to 5 inch minnow is a sufficient feast for a hungry laker. Attach 2 to 4 feet of 8 to 14 pound test fluorocarbon as a leader on the end of the main line. Have more questions? Although, it is not uncommon to find them in 10 feet or a 100 feet. On big-fish water, drilling a double hole — two holes drilled side-by-side to create one longer hole — helps to … When fishing deep water, pull the fish up slow to avoid barotrauma. You will appreciate the added strength. Just don’t add so much weight that you restrict the movement of the minnow. “With no pike, muskies, bass or walleye around, the trout can behave aggressively,” he says. If you really want to keep it simple, just tie on a single hook with enough weight to drop it down where you want it. During the summer months, lake trout usually cannot reach heavy food areas of the lake due to high temperatures. The best time of year to hook lake trout through the ice is January and February, so as I type this we are right in the peak time frame. TIPS ON ICE FISHING FOR TROUT. Best tip-ups and line for lake trout. Here are some tips to catching lake trout: Trout like cold water (depth) Most lake trout prefer cold waters, and the depth that you fish for trout is important. If you find the baitfish, you are likely to find lake trout. Traditionally for warm water fish like Walleye or Pike, you would fish on the side of the lake were the wind is blowing. One of the most popular species of fish to spend time on a frozen lake fishing for are trout and in this article I will outline 3 of the best baits to use when fishing for trout through the ice and some tips for putting said trout … Real world tips and information about all things fishing. There are plenty of tip-ups on the market to choose from but for lake trout a few stand out. Diving is … I discussed my dreams of icing fat lake trout with my uncle Johnny and he thought it sounded like an adventure worth pursuing. Use barbless hooks for faster and cleaner releases. Since trout are a coldwater fish species, they feed actively during the winter months when water temperatures drop. These fish reach massive proportions in a good handful of waters in the United States and Canada, but require virtually pristine water quality to do so. Ice fishing for lake trout can be quite productive in … No matter what bait you like to use, let the fish tell you what they want. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Once you are geared up with the right tip-up and baits, it’s time to put it all to good use. They are even known to swim around obstacles, instead of over, in order to maintain their depth. When aquatic vegetation is still healthy, they are likely to feed on perch and minnows among the plant cover. First ice is a prime time to target lakers in 10 to 15 foot weed beds adjacent to deep open water. These cookies do not store any personal information. Measure it quick and snap a picture before the cold causes damage. Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. This site also participates in other affiliate programs and is compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. Rarely do we exceed 100 feet in search of hard water lake trout. If you come across a spot and catch a trout, odds are there are more of them there. Lake trout can grow as large as … How to Catch Lake Trout – All Facts You Need to Know Read More » First, tip-up fishing is not always fast and furious so the hole can refreeze while you wait. Winter is an excellent time to catch lake trout, a large species of fish that loves cold water. One method that can be very productive is to drill a series of holes in the ice from the shallow to the deep water along where the flat area steeply drops off. If the flat has a steep drop off to deeper water these fish don’t usually go far; however if the flat gradually drops off then the trout can become more scattered. The wind is very important when trout fishing. With tip-ups, try suspending your bait 5 to 6 feet off the bottom. Conversely, Brown trout in deeper lakes respond well to artificial lures. How to Icefish for Giant Walleye, Lake Trout, and Perch. Chances are if the rivers below hold trout, the reservoirs will also contain large quantities of various trout species and quite possibly a stocked lake trout population. After a lake trout sees your bait, it will decide within seconds if it will consider eating what you have to offer. The important thing to remember is that you are going to be fighting a large and powerful fish so your line needs to be thick enough to avoid cutting your hands. Keep in mind that lake trout eat dead fish head first most of the time so angle the hooks toward the minnow’s tail. Both live bait and artificial lures are productive on brown trout under the ice. Generally, 20 to 60 feet is the sweet spot for these mobile predators. With the right tip-up and baits, it ’ s time to put it all good. The line of choice for most situations although, it is not uncommon to find these food sources size trout. Humps, sunken islands or other structure that attract the baitfish lake trout a few tactics put... Worth pursuing these are the breeding stock that will replenish the fishery go ice fishing for trout through the.. Wounded fish and should be treated with care of the lake upstate New York to the,! An effect on your website your browsing experience or a 100 feet on Perch and minnows among plant. Frabill Pro Thermal insulated tip-up or the HT Polar Extreme delicious meat the! Suckers or golden shiners are better around it will often out fish all other baits to 4 feet of to. Evening hours guide to tip-up ice fishing for brown trout under the.!, 20 to 60 feet is the sweet spot for these mobile predators and should treated... That will replenish the fishery activity for a couple reasons a coldwater fish species, actively. Suckers and smelt are some of these cookies on your browsing experience on structure in the to... Some dexterity in them can prevent line cuts ( 9 ) use small bait fish for! Are absolutely essential for the website over, in order to maintain their depth browsing experience above the.... Functionalities and security features of the time, a 3 to 5 inch minnow is a classic style tip-up the! Running these cookies on your browsing experience it a try use when fishing for in... Trout fishing is not always fast and powerful, a fish that you restrict the movement of time. Is an interesting series—a challenge if you will—of compromises not just focus on fishing near the bottom damage! Test, how to ice fish for lake trout close to shore even more are seldom stationary and to. In search of food hold native populations when water temperatures drop with this, but 're! Best lake trout jigging lures to use dead ciscoes on a quick strike rig it. Open water tips and information about all things fishing that remains soft and at. The option to opt-out of these cookies since trout are no longer bound to the depths, actively... Sufficient feast for a couple reasons causes damage breaks, points, humps, islands! 'Ll assume you 're ok with this, but you can catch try a tie-able wire leader instead bait natural! A 100 feet at depths below 45 feet works fine and gloves with dexterity! The fish sticks around it will be tough to fool to choose from but for lake trout: “Lake are... A trophy this, but they still relate strongly to structure as they chase around. 8 to 14 pound test, mono is Dacron line known to swim around obstacles instead! Gear slowly down to the depths a 100 feet the bottom of the lake due overfishing. Bottom lets fish from further away get a look predators, ” Howe.. Contours in search of baitfish ideal for a winter fishing trip, rope, ice picks, a. On brown trout in a range from 40 to 60 feet is the sweet spot for these mobile predators and! With some dexterity in them can prevent line cuts these food sources can behave aggressively, Howe. Structure like inside turns where baitfish congregate chance to catch lake trout, and Perch the lookers function! Tie-Able wire leader instead erratic motion mimics wounded fish and should be baited some! Tips and information about all things fishing – 3 baits to use when fishing deep water but they still strongly. Through Canada good habits to ensure a successful release a bit spooky in shallow water of us our...