4 Tips if You are Thinking about Brown Trout Ice Fishing

By Andy Whitcomb

Oct 02, 2018

Winter will be here before you know it. A fun fish species to catch through the ice is the brown trout. Here’s how.

Astonishingly, ice fishing opportunities may soon be here. To many anglers, ice fishing is a strange novelty, useful mainly for combating deep winter cabin fever. But many others can’t wait because, with experience, this may become some of their most productive fishing of the year. Many fish species can be caught through the ice but brown trout ice fishing is a lot of fun.

Originally from Europe, brown trout have been widely introduced.  They usually are stocked about 8-10 inches but eventually may reach as much as 40 pounds if conditions and food sources are favorable.  These fish can be aggressive, capable of eating large prey such as mice, however when brown trout ice fishing, downsize your presentations. The best bait for brown trout ice fishing will be small bait such as meal worms or minnows. Or, small lures that can be worked vertically such as spoons or jigs are preferred when that water is this obnoxiously cold.

1. Use Appropriate Fishing Line

Although some brown trout ice fishing tips may suggest braided line, it would not be my first choice. Due to its multiple strands, braided line holds more water and thus the fishing rod guides may get blocked with frozen ice jams more frequently than if using standard monofilament.

2. Check Stocking Reports

Check stocking reports” needs to be included in any list of brown trout ice fishing tips. A late season stocking in a body of water will help make those holes in the ice a little easier to drill.

3. Stay Safe

And finally, when brown trout ice fishing, or ice fishing for any fish for that matter, be sure to stay safe. 5 inches of ice is recommended to support an angler and you certainly won’t find it in October.  Be patient and make sure all of your ice fishing gear is ready to go when that grumpy Old Man Winter starts closing open water and taking away your places to cast.

Are you planning your next fishing trip? Make sure you purchase your fishing license online first. 

Andy Whitcomb
Andy Whitcomb
Andy is an outdoor writer (http://www.justkeepreeling.com/) and stressed-out Dad has contributed over 380 blogs to takemefishing.org since 2011. Born in Florida, but raised on banks of Oklahoma farm ponds, he now chases pike, smallmouth bass, and steelhead in Pennsylvania. After earning a B.S. in Zoology from OSU, he worked in fish hatcheries and as a fisheries research technician at OSU, Iowa State, and Michigan State.