When chasing big lakers through the ice, there are a few key boxes to check in order to be successful: one, you need to have motivation – if you aren’t getting any bites in the hole you started in, drill a new one and try again (although I have to admit, this is more of a “do as I say, not as I do” type scenario as I personally lack the shoulder power to hand crank an ice auger to make a bunch of holes in the ice). Two, patience – this goes hand-in-hand with the motivation; you need to have the patience to keep the lure on the end of your line dancing constantly, in hopes of attracting the attention of a lake trout. Third, a well-stocked tackle box gives you options, as you will undoubtedly find yourself questioning your choice in lure as you watch your buddy pull a big one up onto the ice.
The fun thing about ice fishing is that it doesn’t have to be a costly endeavour – tackle included. It seems like every year we add a couple new lures to our box, rotating between old faithfuls and new finds. If you’re looking for some additions to your tackle box, or if you are just starting out, here’s a few options you should try.
Ruby Eye Wiggler
This is a good old standby that produces every season for us, both on the ice jigging during the winter and trolling behind the boat in the summertime. Our favourite is the nickel ruby eye.
I have yet to personally have a buzz bomb produce for me (see aforementioned lack of patience when constantly jigging) but buzz bombs have brought plenty of lake trout back to my kitchen. A current favourite colour has been the green holographic design on one side and white on the other. Select the size of the lure based off the water depth and conditions.
While tube jigs are relatively new to our tackle box, they get the job done when targeting lake trout and, as a bonus, if there are burbot in the waterbody you are fishing, they also seem to be drawn to them. White or glow-in-the-dark colours are our go-to.
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