One of the most popular species of fish to spend time on a frozen lake fishing for are trout and in this article I will outline 3 of the best baits to use when fishing for trout through the ice and some tips for putting said trout bait into action. Seeing as how trout are a cold water fish, they tend to stay fairly “active” year round, which makes ice fishing for trout a very popular winter time activity in many area’s of the northern United States and all of Canada.
One of the most important aspects of ice fishing for trout are the type of bait that is used and the ways in which the trout bait is employed. It’s also important to point out that in most cases “low light” times of the day, which means mornings and evenings are typically better for ice fishing. So, try to be out on the ice during the early morning and/or late evening if you want to have the best chance of catching some trout.
With that being said, below you will find 3 trout baits, one or all of all of which you should have available to you the next time that you head out onto the ice in search of trout. The baits are being listed in no particular order and are all great choices when it comes to ice fishing for trout.
Tiny Jigs Tipped with Maggots – Tiny jigs, sometimes as small as 1/100 of an ounce (this is obviously really tiny!) that have been “tipped” with a live maggot is an excellent bait to use when ice fishing for trout. When fishing trout bait such as small jigs, remember to not ‘jig’ your jig as much as you might think you should. When ice fishing many times less movement is more productive than a constant jigging action.
Powerbait – Powerbait is an excellent bait for trout, especially if those trout have been planted, which is the case many times with trout in lakes. Again smaller is better when fishing trout bait such as Powerbait. A device such as an “eggberry” forms a perfect salmon egg sized ball around a #18 or smaller treble hook, which is the perfect size for ice fishing for trout. I’ve even seen ice fishermen go about fishing trout bait such as Powerbait by “tipping” their small jig with it. Although Powerbait is often thought of as a good bait for lake fishing at other times, it is often overlooked when the subject of ice fishing comes up.
Live Minnows – live minnows can be hard to come by in some area’s, but nonetheless make an excellent bait for ice fishing. A great way to go fishing with this trout bait is to rig a minnow under a tip-up in shallow water (2 to 6 feet). This is a great ice fishing tactic that has helped me catch many trout over the years.
The bottom line is that all of these baits are an excellent choice when it comes to fishing trout bait under the ice. As I said if any of these baits aren’t a part of your ice fishing arsenal, they should be added sooner, rather than later.