What kind of gear needed for a fantastic day ice fishing?

Ice fishing!!  So much fun right?? Do you think it’s something you’d like to try?? Well it’s so much fun to take up ice fishing especially during this pandemic, more and more people are heading out & exploring what Maine has to offer!! Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll need even if it’s just visiting us for a couple hours!!

What is ice fishing anyway, whats it all about? Well it’s fishing from an opening made in the ice on a frozen body of water!! Ya pretty wild right!! It really is!! But once you get the hang of things and practice safety things on the ice and take precautions against the elements, you will be good to go!! Even if you’re not into the fishing part but want to go out on the ice, it’s so important to be dressed for it!!! So here are a few tricks that I’ve learned and that will help me enjoy our fishing journey alittle more in the future!! Hope it’s helpful to you!!

Ice fishing in Maine

Having the right gear & wearing the appropriate clothing is essential!! Appropriate clothing & footwear is a must because the weather on any body of water, not to mention being in the wintertime can be brutal!! So make sure to have these essentials

Ice fishing facts

According to Minnesota DNR @ http://www.dnr.state.man.us stay off the ice under 4”, wowza!!

4”-ice fishing or other activities on foot

5-7” snowmobile or ATV

8-12” car or small pickup

12-15” medium truck

I don’t think we’ll be driving on ice anytime in my life but it’s good to know 🙂 I think the ice on Sebago was about 8” 🙂 great!!

To wear; even if you’re  just visiting a friend

  1. Insulated, Waterproof boots
  2. Good winter jacket with waterproof exterior shell
  3. Ice safety picks, ice cleats
  4. Layers preferably not cotton
  5. Insulated, Waterproof boots
  6. warm socks, one or two pairs  thermal/wool. Just make sure it’s comfortable; if it’s too tight your feet will be cold.
  7. snow pants/ waterproof pants

Ice Fishing trip essentials

  1. Pop up shelter
  2. Ice spud to check the ice ahead
  3. Buddy heated
  4. Thermal packs
  5. Auger
  6. Ice traps/tip-ups
  7. chisel
  8. Bait net & bucket
  9. pliers
  10. Ice skimmer
  11. Ice fishing pole & lures
  12. Live bait
  13. Extra clothes, whistle for emergency
  14. Sled(s) having sleds & a teen or friend to help pull them!! Makes life easier!! Many people use snowmachines to pull their sled & supplies 🙂
  15. camp chairs

Food:  hot drinks, thermos of hot soup. Lots of snacks 🙂 sandwiches!! Find your spot, Then set up & relax!!

Ice fishing set up!! I love our tent!!
This is part of our set up for now, i especially love our Eskimo pop up ice shelter!!  I will however be totally adding a buddy heater though!! I think that’s all we need!! And getting some waterproof insulated boots!!! I’m finding out that it is a must!! Sad story last time we went out my feet got soaked!! I managed to stay until we were ready to go home though 🙂

Maine ice fishing guided tours

Another idea is you want to experience ice fishing is to hire a guide and pay $500 for an 8 hr excursion or 300 for 1/2 day!! For an awesome experience. I think it’s wonderful.. some guides even make a meal prepared on the ice!! Love it!!  Or visit the smelting shacks, check out this blog post Ice fishing on the Kennebec, a fun adventure @ Worthings smelt camp

So if you decide to head out, there’s probably a few good weeks left of ice to fish on!! So Have a wonderful time!! Be sure to check the ice levels before you go out!!!  Thanks for visiting!!






  1. Having the right gear is always key. I’ve always been curious to see what ice fishing is like. I might try that this winter assuming it gets cold again. Temperatures have hovered just above freezing the past week and most of our snow has melted. Take care.

    • For sure gear is so important!! Amazingly even in March & temps above freezing, people are still on the ice here in Maine!! 4 inches or more is a good sign, hope you can try it sometime!! Best wishes, hope you can continue to enjoy the outdoors 🙂 Have a great day!!

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