Once the snow starts to fall, it’s time to pull out those snowshoes. Exploring the trails and the quiet of nature is one way to use your ‘shoes. But sometimes, we need to add a new activity to our winter toolbox. Luckily, snowshoes are helpful for other winter activities, including ice fishing.
Here are a few reasons how and why to use the foam models by Crescent Moon when ice fishing.
Means of Getting Out On the Ice
Getting out on the ice can be slippery, snow-packed, or covered in deep snow. Although some anglers drive out on the ice with their car, pickup truck, four-wheeler, or snowmobile, it’s safer to consider walking to your hole.
When pulling a sled
To get out on the ice, you can pull a sled with gear. Snowshoes, with their shorter length, can be easier to use than cross-country skis when pulling a heavy sled through the snow.
Packed snow / mixed conditions
When lakes are covered with either packed snow or shallow snow, you can use Crescent Moon’s foam models. These models provide extra support and stability when walking to your hole and getting ready to start ice fishing. Foam models such as the Eva also include ICE spikes. These spikes provide traction on a mix of snow and ice and limit slipping when drilling your first hole with a power auger on the ice.
Foam Snowshoe Benefits
The Eva foam snowshoes by Crescent Moon have a few benefits, including:
1. They are comfortable. You can wear the foam snowshoes out on the ice all day hole hopping, and it feels just like an extension of your boot.
2. The Eva and Luna come with ICE spikes to provide traction and grip when on the ice.
3. You can use the foam models to keep your feet warm while ice fishing, including wearing them inside your pop-up hub or sled popover to keep your feet insulated. This extra insulation also helps your feet last more hours on the ice and snow.
4. Foam snowshoes are lightweight, which helps limit the amount of energy you’re spending when pulling your gear a long distance.
5. You can use your snowshoes to pack the snow and create mini trails while hole hopping.
6. When you are hole hopping and down on your knees checking for fish, you can lean back and sit on the foam snowshoes.
7. The Velcro straps are very easy to use and get on and off quickly if needed.
8. Kids can join in on the fun since foam snowshoe models are available for kids. The kids will have the same traction and stability as the adult foam models, which also aids in the prevention of stepping into pre-existing ice holes. Nothing can ruin the day more than an accidental step into an ice hole for families fishing!
Tips for Using Your Snowshoes
When out on the ice, here are a few tips to make your excursion easier and to stay safe.
Snowshoe writer, Jim Joque, says, “Nobody likes going through the ice. But when on frozen water, the danger is always present. So, when putting on snowshoes, be sure to loosen the bindings enough to kick out of them should you fall through the ice. But, make sure to have the bindings secured just enough so they don’t fall off when hiking.”
As mentioned above, the Velcro straps on Crescent Moon’s Eva and Luna snowshoes are easy to get on and off and loosen if needed to stay safe over the ice.
Distance from sled
Joque also reminds us, “If pulling a sled, allow enough rope from you to the sled so that the sled does not hit against the tail of your snowshoes while walking. Also, keep a distance so that rooster tails from your snowshoes do not fill the sled with snow.”
Besides using snowshoes for getting to and from your fishing location, consider other uses for them. For example, use snowshoes like a shovel and clear snow to set up a portable shanty or an area for a bucket and ice hole. In deep snow, use the snowshoe as a platform to place a daypack, gas stove, or tackle box on top.
Remember your fishing gear
Besides bringing snowshoes, remember your other fishing gear. This gear could include a plastic sled containing a portable fish shanty, ice auger, shovel, bait, and pail. Several items are included in Crescent Moon’s recommended ice fishing snowshoe kit. Also, remember to bring your fishing license and state fishing regulations book.
Ice safety comes first
Finally, when out on your snowshoes, safety comes first when on the ice. There is no sure way to know that ice is safe, but some guidelines recommend that four inches of ice could be safe for foot activities.
Ice thickness, though, is not necessarily constant across a body of water. To play safe, look for gray spots or sloshy areas where water may seep through the ice, areas with cracked or buckled ice, and areas with open or moving water. Also, stay clear of protruding objects like logs, rocks, and bridges. Sun shining on those objects can warm the surrounding ice.
Also, heavily snow-covered lakes do not necessarily make them safer. For example, if heavy snow came early in the season, water might not have had time to freeze sufficiently. Or, snow may be insulating a thin layer of ice, thus making it unsafe. And, no matter the ice thickness, heavy snow impacts the weight that the ice can support.
Use Your Snowshoes for Ice Fishing
Overall, snowshoes and Crescent Moon’s foam snowshoe models are incredibly useful when ice fishing. So, stay safe on the ice, enjoy a day of ice fishing, and most certainly enjoy your means of getting out there on snowshoes.
To learn more about Crescent Moon’s Eva and Luna foam models for ice fishing, visit www.crescentmoonsnowshoes.com.
Have you used your snowshoes to go ice fishing? What recommendations or suggestions do you have for the outing? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments below.
Crescent Moon Snowshoes sponsored this post.