How many ice rods and why?
Many attendees at my seminars ask how many rods I carry when
going ice fishing. My answer: If you own four or five ice rods,
take them all. That’s the easy part of the question. Now the part
that requires effort:
What species will you fish? Decide, then have rods pre-rigged at
home. If you’re pursuing panfish, take all of your panfish tackle,
not just a couple of rods with a few lures tossed in a Ziplock bag.
Have all your options so you’ll be ready when the fish define what
they’ll be striking on a specific day.
Being pre-rigged means much more productive fishing, because it
eliminates retying on the ice and excess downtime. Fish with a
friend (and his six rods) and you can double your potential
offerings and try to develop a pattern.
I usually bring six rods, and at least one of those is rigged
with a bobber for deadsticking. The others have different jigs,
lures, and spoons in many different styles and colors. I’ve found
deadsticking more popular and effective, especially this winter
with a large amount of pressure on lakes in the Upper Midwest.
With lots of end-of-the-season gear specials available, now is a
great time to load up on owning a half-dozen or more rods.