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new to ice fishing

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hey guys, my wife bought me an ice fishing pole and some equipment being that I love to fish, though this is my first year fishing and ice fishing. I've been reading some posts but I've still got some questions...I'm wondering if some of you guys can help a new fishermen in on some questions I have...

As far as ice fishing jigs, live bait, what are some to take a look at? I'm thinking about doing some panfish, walleye, pike fishing.

I don't have any sort of GPS/locater yet though I do plan to get by early Feb, are there any tricks to finding a good spot when out on a lake?

The sonar I've thought about buying is the Vexlair FL-12, how does the FL-08 do in comparison? and what are some good quality GPS systems to take a look at?

any help would be appreciated..Thanks a lot guys smile.. being that I do live in Waconia, I'll probably see some of you guys out on the lake.

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Welcome to FM tnm27. If you looking at the fishing supply here on the site there are a lot of jigs they sell. I bought the kit last year and has a lot of what you need. Panfish, go small. Ants are good and then a lot of small jigs that glow. For eyes I like to use chubby darters and jigging raps.

You don't need a GPS. You can print out maps off the DNR of lakes and by drilling holes and looking for depth you can find the area's to fish.

I've never used an FL12 but I got an FL8 a couple of years ago and it has and still does serve me well. I have upgraded to an LX5 but still have my FL8 as a backup and let others use it. Either one is going to do you very well.

I live in St. Paul and not all that close to you. But I'm heading out to the chisago area this weekend. If you wanna head out and learn a little about ice fishing let me know. Leave me your email addy on here and I'll get back to you.

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Ice buster bobbers - Pick some up. Live bait - crappie and fathead minnows, waxworms. Lots of folks like small plastics like ratsos and shrimpos for pannies too.

Never used an FL12 but lots of folks love their FL8. I have an 18 and wouldn't give up the zoom for anything. check C-list for good deals on any model vexilar/marcum.

Like Sand said the DNR lake finder tool is good, a GPS with a lakemaster chip is better. If you're a brand new ice fisherman though and in doubt, head towards shantytown - usually a bunch of houses aren't there because it is a bad spot. just don't set up a foot off somebody's door.

I just started ice fishing a few years ago, it took me a couple years to acclimate to the MN winters after my move from the backwoods of the Ozarks. It doesn't take long to figure it out well enough to have fun and catch some fish while your at it.

Good luck!

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for your tackle, go to any tackle store or sporting goods store and they can help you out. just ask for some basic crappie jiggs, some panfish jiggs, walleye tackle. they will point you in the right dirrection. i would recomend getting the ice buster bobbers, they work great! for your bait selection i would pick up some live bait- grubb worms,crappie minows, fatheads, and siners and suckers for walleye and pike. i would also recomend getting a few tippups. thats what most people usefor catching pike and some times even walleyes.

as far as electronics, i have an fl-8 and have been using it for a while now and i love it. its the cheapest one that vexilar makes and is a great fishfinder! like sandmannd said- you dont really need a gps. but they can be helpfull when it comes to marking hot spots if you find them. they are also great for fishing the bigger lakes like mille lacs and stuff. if you end up buying a gps i would go with the ifinder. that the one i have and it works great. its also pretty cheap.

Good Luck!

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Hi everyone,

I'm new to the Metro area, and I was wondering if anyone could tell me what lakes to fish for walleye or crappie? I am having a hard time finding somewhere close to the Metro in order to fit a little fishing in during the work week, after fighting traffic home and all.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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Welcome Walleye Hunter. I like the chisago chain of lakes for some decent fishing. There are many area lakes that are decent within a short drive. I'll give you the same offer. If you wanna head out with me sometime post your email addy and I'll get you on the ice with a small group of us from FM.

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Try Medicine Lake and there is always Minnetonka. Hardy's bait store can help you out with Medicine - always a good source of info and willing to help. You also have Calhoun and Harriet - Moore's bait can steer you right there. And then there is Minnetonka. The community spots produce fish and are a good place to get your feet wet.

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I'd also look into a quality auger. Nothin' more frusterating than getting set up only to have no or a partial hole

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I seee you're from St. Louis Pk. Thats my area, I work in Bloomington and occasionally hit Minnetonka. ALways lookking for a partna if you want to get out to Tonka sometime. I got some good spots. rkellee at hotmail dot com

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Ya, Minnetonka is just about as good as a Metro lake gets. I would hit up Wayzata bait&tackle and see where the bite is on at. The nice thing about Tonka is that there are lots of spots to hit. You could do the community hole thing or go out on your own and find a hot spot. Lots of water to try there.

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hey sandmann, sorry it took a while to get back at you. just give me a call today, I'll be there with some buddies already so you can just come join us. we'll be in the Chisago area from around 4ish tonight till 11 or so. my number is 651-398-0006.

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