Ice Fishing At Put-In-Bay
As Put-in-Bay Ice Fishing Season is just around the corner, let’s review some safety tips to keep you and your loved ones safe while enjoying this fun-filled sport. Always be sure to alert friends where and when you are going to be ice fishing. Neck-hung ice picks should be worn at all times. Screwdrivers packed in a backpack would be inaccessible and useless in the event of falling through while ice fishing.
Always have the proper equipment, such as a compass, GPS, cell phone, portable ship-to-shore radio, flashlight, whistle, creepers or crampons for boots (snow tires for your feet), and a self-inflating life vest. Wear warm protective clothing while ice fishing and dress in layers that can easily be removed in your shanty. You should also have in your possession a copy of your Ohio Fishing License.
The waters and areas you would avoid with your boat you will want to avoid walking the ice. Reefs and strong current areas (like marina exits) can hollow out the ice making it unsafe. Follow marked paths where available.
In the event of falling through, most people have 3-6 minutes to get out of the water before their body shuts down. Distribute your weight evenly over as broad a surface area as possible. Crawl and or roll to safe ice. Radio for help (faster than a cell phone). Get to someplace warm.
Ice Fishing Tips For Safety
Lastly, when you are done ice fishing, please mark your old shanty holes again this winter when you move or quit for the season. It may save someone from a severe injury or dunking into the lake. All it takes is a tree limb, with branches wide enough not to fall through and tall enough to be seen over the top of any snow drifts, standing up to mark the holes. Then the area can be avoided until either cold weather heals the open holes or the season ends without incident.
Ice fishing can be a fun and exciting winter activity, but it’s important to remember that it also comes with some risks. Here are some ice fishing safety tips to keep in mind:
- Check the ice conditions: Before you go out on the ice, make sure to check the ice conditions. The ice should be at least four inches thick for ice fishing and even thicker for other activities like snowmobiling or driving on the ice. Avoid areas with cracks, holes, or open water.
- Dress appropriately: Dress warmly in layers and wear waterproof boots with good traction. Bring extra clothing and gear in case you get wet or the weather changes.
- Bring safety gear: Bring safety gear such as ice picks, a throw rope, and a flotation device. Ice picks can be used to help you climb out of the water if you fall in, while a throw rope can be used to rescue someone else who falls in.
- Don’t go alone: It’s best to go ice fishing with a partner or group. If someone falls through the ice, they’ll need help getting out quickly.
- Be cautious on snowmobiles and ATVs: If you’re using a snowmobile or ATV to get to your fishing spot, be careful and stay on marked trails. Don’t drive too fast or too close to the edge of the ice.
- Be aware of changing weather conditions: Keep an eye on the weather and be prepared to leave the ice if conditions worsen. Snow, rain, or thawing temperatures can weaken the ice and make it unsafe.
- Follow local regulations: Check local regulations and rules for ice fishing and follow them. Some areas may have restrictions on fishing or access to the ice.
By following these ice fishing safety tips, you can help ensure a fun and safe experience on the ice.