Here’s a topic that we don’t know a lot about. When I was in my early teens, I worked for a sporting goods store so I learned some of the ice fishing terminology and what the equipment looked like. But this is one sport I have never tried. It sounds like fun, though, going out onto a frozen river or lake, putting up a hut, cutting out a hole with an auger, sticking in a rod, and then waiting for the fish to bite. Maybe this should be one of our next adventures to look forward to. I can’t think of anything that is stopping us and there are lots of places to go in the winter.
The reason we got more interested in ice fishing is that one of our readers wrote in asking us about transducers and how they work. In the simplest form of a definition, they are a way to locate schools of fish. I am more familiar with customers buying them for the summer fishing season, so it was new to me about the winter. Anyway, depth finders are electronic boxes that work off of sonar pings, which seems obvious, since the fish are in the water. Further, they are a type of computer technology, so they have software that will require updating.
To be honest, after Alex wrote in, it got me thinking that ice fishing fish finders would be ideal because you could be sitting in the cold a long time. At least with warm weather fishing, you don’t have as much preparation other than grabbing a rod, reel and some bait, but if you take the time to cut out a hole in the ice, you have to hope some fish pass by. That means your electronic box could come in real handy and pay for itself in no time.
We have looked around and found five that we think might be a good match for all you wintry fishermen out there.
Points To Expand Upon
#1 – I should clarify something about terminology. Although a lot of people came into the store asking for a transducer, this is a separate component from the depth finder. Actually, you really need both pieces. One is how the fish are found and the other is the display module to read things like depth of water, location of fish, and temperature of water.
#2 – There seem to be three types of depth finders best suited to ice water fishing. They are called portable models, flashers, and traditional units.
#3 – When using a depth finder on a boat, some type of mounting bracket affixes the unit to the side of the boat for stability. Since ice fishing is not done out of a boat, the unit needs to be portable. I’ve read, though, where lots of fishermen have come up with home made solutions to keep the transducer on the edge of the hole.
#4 – A traditional unit mounted on a boat requires some sort of power to operate. This may be difficult to do while ice fishing, so you may have to use one of the other models. Again, if you read around, there is plenty of ingenuity out there.
#5 – Although rare, sometimes units do not like the real cold. It is not the screen itself, but rather the batteries and electronics. Usually, when it gets warmed up, it will start running again. Likewise, be careful that your transducer doesn’t get frozen to the ice.