Ice fishing is rising in popularity across Canada. Maybe this is because during tough economical times ice fishing provides a cheap getaway. Or maybe it is because it allows you to enjoy the great outdoors during these long winter months. Whatever it is, at the end of the day you may end up with long lasting memories and supper on the table.
Just last weekend my family and I were able to spend the day on the ice. Though it was -29 when we left the sky was clear and the sun was shining. It warmed up by the time we got to the lake and proved to be a perfect day. Normally we have the lake to ourselves when we go, but this trip we were graced by five other families.
Each family had their own idea of what a day of ice fishing should entail. One family spent their day nestled inside a hut listening to the radio and making tea on their Coleman stove. Another family unloaded their skidoo's and took turns taking the kids sledding. Our family simply sat on buckets and lawn chairs with a fire blazing beside us. We had fishing rods in hand (some of us even just used fishing line) and spent the afternoon talking and fishing. Even my 17 month old son loved the trip. He spent his time running around the ice, playing in the snow and trying to peek into the holes to see what we were trying to get.
During a long day of ice fishing you are sure to get hungry. Make sure you pack a big lunch and even a thermos of hot chocolate, having a full stomach will also help keep you warm while your out on the ice. My fiance's must have's for fishing are a can of soup and a can beans (and a case of beer of course). I really recommend soup for your trips as it cooks great in the fire and will warm you right up (the fire also gives the soup a smokey taste which makes it even more yummy). Remember that both the can and its contents are EXTREMELY hot when coming out of the fire, so be sure to cover your hand before picking it up. Also make sure to remember to open the top of the can before placing it on the edge of the fire. A favorite of most kids of course are fire roasted hot dogs and even smores. There are so many simple and cheap options for you to choose from.
So why not do what so many other Canadians are turning to this winter? You can make a day of ice fishing into anything you want. Like each of the people on the ice with us, we all have our own way of spending the day. Will you cuddle up in a fishing hut, sled the day away, or settle in for some good family fun? No matter what way you choose, just make sure that wether you catch a fish or not, you always walk away with great memories and smile on your face.
View some of my ice fishing pictures in the Canadian Culture forum :