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ice fishing innovations?

Discussion in 'Hard Water Discussions' started by hardwaterfan, Nov 12, 2004.

  1. hardwaterfan

    hardwaterfan Twinsburg, OH (NE OH, northern edge of Summit Co.)

    If anyone has ever come up with anything to make life easier or more fun (how can this be possible? :D ) for ice fishing, and if you care to share, please post it, Id love to see or hear about what you've done! ("tricking" out a shanty, rod holders, lighting systems, storage devices, etc. etc. etc.....)

    The only thing i have actually done is the colored tape on my auger. (colored tape thread)

    But i have some ideas for when i get my hands on a shanty! My next idea is for making those LONG walks out onto the lake dragging a shanty behind you MUCH easier.

    Ill post pics once the idea jells into reality.

    Good fishing! :)

  2. Last Year I Bilt My Own Dog Sled! Great But Not Big Enough I Run Behind It! I Mounted A Couple Of Aluminum Runners On A Small Platform. Thing Really Moves. I Thought I Looked Funny Till I Seen The Guy Pushing The Picnic Table!
  3. hardwaterfan

    hardwaterfan Twinsburg, OH (NE OH, northern edge of Summit Co.)

    one "problem" i see is that it is a lot of work to drag the shanty behind you. After every 500 or thousand feet of walking, you switch hands, etc....your hand gets numb....its not a very efficient way to walk, with one or both hands behind you.

    So, this year, now that i am going to have a shanty of my very own that i can do what i want to it, i am going to make a "harness" that i can wear, and clip to my rope, to place all the weight of the shanty on my midsection and chest!! Ill be able to walk with a normal stride, (or even with my hands in my coat pockets) and I hope that it reduces the effort of pulling the shanty by at least 20% or so.

    So far i bought a roll of "belting" from a craft store. Its 1" blue polypropylene. I hope to cut and rivet something together that has a strap goin around my waist and twin straps coming from the waist over each shoulder.

    All hooking together a few feet behind me, and then hooking to my shanty rope.

    It wont really be secured to my body, only slipping over me, so if it ever needs to come off will. And it will be light as a feather.

    Ive never seen one for sale or heard anyone talking about anything like this, so Im not sure if this might be a bad idea for some reason. :confused:

    But it seems to me like it would make things a lot easier out on the ice. Not so much for short walks, but for those long journeys. If anyone cares to comment on my idea (good or bad) feel free to say so. Constructive comments are always welcome.

  4. For those of us who generally sit outside on a bucket, I have an easy innovation. Take TWO 5 gallon buckets and stack them. Gives you about 4 more inches up off the ice, a great thing for bigger guys. I also cut an opening in one to slide the fish into. Then, you don't even have to get up and teh fish don't get all snowy.
  5. I am in the process of doing to "upgrades" to my shanty - Frabill UltraLite - The first being a ventilation window for my lantern in the front of my shanty and the second is a rod holder that attaches to one of the interior poles of the shanty to keep it off the ground.

    There is just not enough room in that one man to work two rods efficiently. So my thinking is to set this rod up as a "deadstick" and jig with my other pole. I almost lost a rod last year leaving it "unattended" on the ground so hopefully this will fix that problem.

    Will post pics when its complete.
  6. Hardwater,

    I have used a deer drag harness in the past. They only cost a couple of bucks and it loops over 1 shoulder and under the opposite arm. I'm not trying to criticize your idea, but I think that there may be a safety issue with a harness like you described. I would think that there may be a tangling issue should you happen to fall through (God forbid!). Just a thought.

  7. hardwaterfan

    hardwaterfan Twinsburg, OH (NE OH, northern edge of Summit Co.)

    steelhauler.....i see your point and appreciate your opinion. still just kicking ideas around. safety overrides all other concerns.
  8. Last year I bit the bullet and purchased a survival suit. I can now go out alone and feel much better regarding a possible break through and the odds of survival. The added plus is the suit is weatherproof and warm. I can now kneel in snow or slush and not worry about it. :) Don't really need a shanty heater anymore but still use the lantern.
    I have also switched to using a one gallon insulated Coleman jug for the minnows. Water does not freeze or spill. If you need to change or add water, the drain mkes it super simple. Wouldn't think of using anything else for ice fishing with minnows. :D
  9. I also have a mustang suit.Best and warmest safety thing for the ice.Safety harnesses that roofers use fit nice and tight with easy rings for attaching things. Good luck out there this year and be safe.ICE PICKS are also nice to have.
  10. What type of mustang suit do you have?
  11. No matter how warm I dress for the day, I always seem to tighten up in between my shoulder blades. This year, I'm going to try one of those hot patches across my back, thermapatch I think is one of the brand names.

    Martini's in the shanty instead of beer. Less exposer to the elements for a certain part of the anatomy. :D
    We fish within walking distance of my home. I don't recommend alcohol and ice fishing. That combo can ruin a day.
    For the newbies to the sport, hypothermia sets in quicker with liquor.
  12. Master Baiter

    Master Baiter Biomedical Technician

    Two years ago I bought a pair of military mickey mouse boots on ebay. Man are they warm! always had a problem w/cold feet. Not with these. Anyways, last year I screwed some short sheet metal screws in the soles. they're thick enough that it doesn't penitrate the liner. Walked on ice that was smooth as glass and also ice with water on top. Not a bit of slipping at all. It was great!!!!
  13. Pymybob I have a buoy o buoy suit. it is made in canada and more comfortable than the stearns or mustang suit. They are available online at They are alot cheaper (under 200 us) and are extremely warm dry and comfy. Check the archives on W/C as that is where I found out about em.

  14. Lundy

    Lundy Staff Member

    I learned that if I complain about how far the walk is, how bad my kness are hurting, and how old I am, that Steelhauler will pull my shanty for me :D

    Wes, is a great guy that has saved this old fat man some hard pulls.

    I just bought a new Polaris Ranger so I can haul him (and me) around on the ice at presque Ilse, and up in Michigan.

  15. I didn't think they allowed 4 wheelers on it?
  16. Lundy

    Lundy Staff Member


    Yes, from the city side only.
  17. Kim,

    It was not a problem being the mule team. If you would have asked I probably would have loaded you up and hauled you too. But it will be nice to have a private limo and chauffer on the ice this year.

  18. Sorry for delay.Mine is the ice rider.Bibs and jacket.
  19. At Gander Mnt. today, I found a tent lamp that attached to the poles within a tent. That would work great inside a shanty and it would be out of the way. I just told my wife about this great, inexpensive X-Mas present.