There’s a tendency in ice fishing to downsize baits to smaller versions of what you’d typically use during the open-water period. Experienced guides like Brad Hawthorne advise that this can be a big mistake, especially when it comes to early ice walleyes. *Product listing at the bottom.
We caught up with Brad on Minnesota’s famed Mille Lacs Lake to test his theory. Brad shares his reasoning on why bigger baits in the 3- to 4-inch range, such as the #9 Jigging Rap, are among his top picks through the ice. A couple of quality fish later, and Brad had us reconsidering some of our bias toward the use of smaller baits.
- VMC Rocker Spoon
- VMC Round Treble Hook
- VMC Split Ring
- Rapala Jigging Rap
- Sufix Invisline Fluorocarbon Ice Line, 5lb
- MarCum LX-7 Digital Sonar System
- MarCum Lithium Ion Shuttle
- Tuned Up Custom Rods Precision Power 32″ Ice Rod
- Shimano Stradic CI4+ Spinning Reel
- VMC Rolling Swivel
- Rap Pedestal Tool Combo
- Rapala Fisherman’s Multi-Tool