Choosing Your Ice Fishing Rod
Choosing the correct ice fishing rod is important as you don’t want to have to deal with problems with ice fishing equipment when you are out on the frozen lake. Spending some time getting ice fishing rods that will meet all your needs is a good idea since ice fishing rods are undoubtedly one of the most important factors in being able to bring in the big fish.
Ice fishing rods, since they are not required for casting, don’t need to be as flexible and certainly not as strong as typical summer fishing rods, but ice fishing rods do need to be sturdy and strong to support the drag of the fish on the end of the ice fishing line. Remember that there will be more of a vertical drag on the end of the ice fishing rods than there will be in traditional fishing, and the last thing that you should have to worry about is the ice fishing rods breaking or the end snapping off.
Typically most ice fishing enthusiasts prefer a 28 inch ice fishing rod that has medium action and is considered to be a jigging rod. This ice fishing rod will be perfect for walleye, whitefish and most types of trout. A lighter action is excellent for smaller species such as perch. A heavier action will be ideal for the larger species of pike and even some of the heavy lake trout.
Another important consideration for ice fishing rods is the action along the blank. A slow action ice fishing rod is very stiff with little flexibility or bend, and typically will not allow enough sensation for the angler to feel the fish nibbling at the ice fishing lures or ice fishing bait. Remember that fish tend to strike much less and nibble more at ice fishing bait and ice fishing lures during the winter, so it is key to be able to feel the action on the end of the ice fishing line. Ice fishing rods that have too much flexibility will be ineffective in bringing the fish towards the surface.
Ice fishing rods for jigging or using artificial ice fishing bait are often fast action or ultra-fast action ice fishing rods that allow the angler to feel the fish on the ice fishing line and set the hook. Graphite ice fishing rods offer a strong enough backbone to reel in the fish without bending too much or breaking. It is important to keep in mind that graphite does become more fragile and brittle in really cold temperatures so many ice anglers choose to use fiberglass ice fishing rods and sacrifice a bit on sensitivity to get increased durability in their ice fishing equipment.