Ice Fishing Clothing for the Family | Dress for Success

Your Ice Fishing Clothing Game Plan

Like almost any outdoor activity, ice fishing is best enjoyed (or maybe only enjoyed) when you take time to prepare for it. While you might be able to improvise in the warmer months, being unprepared in winter is a recipe for a really unenjoyable time afield. Cold temperatures, icy winds, and bad clothing don’t mix well. This is compounded even more when your whole family is with you to experience the displeasure. This season, get everyone on the same page and upgrade your ice fishing clothing using the ice fishing tips and clothing system below. You and the family will have much more fun, even if you don’t catch as many fish as you’d like to.


What Makes Good Ice Fishing Clothing?


The days of dressing in cotton long underwear and sweatshirts is mostly gone, but we suspect it’s lingering among a few die-hard anglers out there. The problem with cotton is that it doesn’t wick moisture at all, which is a real issue. Inevitably, we’re going to sweat when we’re ice fishing; usually it happens while we’re being mobile (e.g., dragging a fishing shelter, drilling holes for the family, etc.). When we’re done with the physical activity and sit down to watch our bobbers, the sweat just sits there against our skin and cools off. This slowly robs us of our own body temperature and starts a chilling cycle nobody likes to experience when they’re out on the lake. In no time, we’re ready to pack up again, and it’s not even 9 AM.


Performance clothing, on the other hand, is made of synthetic materials like polyester (or blends with cotton) that wick moisture through the fabric. When we sweat, it is basically transferred through our outdoor clothing to the outside of the garment to evaporate away. This keeps our skin drier and allows us to stay comfortable longer. In other words, you should be able to spend more quality time with your family fishing on the ice. The only time pure cotton could be acceptable is if you wouldn’t be doing much physical work; in other words, you show up just in time to fish in the preheated shelter. Everyone’s got a buddy or family member like that anyway, right?


How to Dress for Ice Fishing


With that introduction done, let’s dive into the specific details of your ice fishing clothing system. Layering clothes for cold weather is the best way to regulate your body temperature. Each cold weather clothing layer is very important, but the system itself is pretty customizable for your preferences.


Ryan Lisson


Start with a performance base layer (i.e., long underwear top and bottom, underwear, socks) next to your skin. This material should always be a moisture-wicking powerhouse since it’s in direct contact with your sweaty skin. That’s exactly its purpose, so make sure that it is snug enough to be in constant contact. If it’s too loose, it won’t touch it enough to effectively wick the sweat out and away. Your first pair of socks should also be a liner sock made of polyester or fine wool, which will transmit sweat away from your feet to keep them dry. Cold feet will send you packing pretty fast.


The next winter fishing clothing layer is the one that you adjust most based on the conditions and your activity levels. This insulating layer (or more accurately, layers) should also pull sweat away from your body, but they should primarily hold your body heat. To combine these qualities and get the best of both, a blend of polyester and cotton or polyester and wool works well for ice fishing clothing. The idea is that you can add or remove one of these layers as you cool down or heat up, respectively. The first insulation layers should be slightly snugger to pull sweat out and away, but they can get larger as they move away from your body. Oddly enough, having fewer layers with some dead air space actually helps hold heat longer than multiple tight layers. Typical insulation layers might include wool socks, fleeces, sweatshirts, or vests. This is where the Moon Shine Camo® ice fishing clothing really excels. For example, pairing a hoodie with a black camo vest provides some great insulation on those chilly winter fishing days. If it warms up or you move into a shelter, you can remove the vest and fish in your sweatshirt alone.


Finally, there’s the outside shell layer that protects everything inside. As far as ice fishing apparel goes, this can be a deal breaker for people. Having lots of insulation is great, but it won’t count for much if the wind cuts through it to steal your body heat and the snow melts on your clothing. The outer shell keeps your heat in and the cold wind out. Find a durable winter jacket and bibs that are water- and wind-resistant, and pick up some high-quality boots with 800 to 1,000 grams insulation. You’ll often find yourself kneeling on the ice and your boots will get slushy water on them after drilling holes, so having waterproof ice fishing gear is a must. That being said, you also need the material to be breathable. If not, all that moisture wicked from your body will stop at the barrier of your shell layer instead of venting out to the world.


Then there are the other critical ice fishing accessories, namely being hats and gloves. Depending on how cold it is and whether or not you’re ice fishing in a shelter, you may or may not need a few pair of either. For example, some anglers like to wear a performance beanie underneath a warmer,

insulating hat. This is good for sitting outside using tip-ups, but it is overkill when you’re in a warm shelter. Ice fishing gloves are a different story. Since gloves can make reeling a cumbersome process, it’s best to wear a very warm chopper-style mitten that you can easily slide on and off. That way, you can quickly remove them to catch a fish and put them back on when you’re done baiting the next hook. Keep a spare hand towel hooked to your waist so you can rinse your hands in the water and dry them off before putting your mittens back on. If it’s really cold, you could put a hand warmer into the mitten.


Do You Have the Right Ice Fishing Clothing?


Well, does the system above make sense? While there are lots of youth clothing options to dress your kids according to the layers above, sometimes it might make more sense to bring a shelter and heater to have a mobile base camp. That way when your kids ultimately get too sweaty from running around (which they will), they can dry off and stay warm inside. It will also keep you fishing longer…just saying.


Looking for an Ice Fishing Camo Pattern?


If you are a fishing enthusiast, chances are you are interested in finding a fishing camo pattern. Undertow™ by Moon Shine Camo® is a fishing camo pattern that emerges your clothing, fishing gear, or even your boat in an underwater and tangled brush world! Check it out below!

undertow lifestyle camo Moon Shine Camo


How Moon Shine Camo Fits into Your Ice Fishing Plans

Outdoor Clothing for the Ice Fishing Enthusiast

Imagine a calm day on the ice where the sun is shining and the wind is barely a whisper. You don’t even need your shelter with you, and can just sit on a camp chair in front of your ice fishing holes. Suddenly a flag from a tip-up shoots high into the air, and you scramble to get over to it. The line is spooling out steadily, but you set the hook as soon as it pauses. After a good fight, you pull a very nice northern pike through the ice and re-set the bait for the chance at another. Life is good.

Though it’s been an unusual winter so far in terms of warmer temperatures, there are still opportunities for hard core ice fishermen and women to get out on the water. If you haven’t tried ice fishing before, you really owe it to yourself to go try it at least once. If you have fished on hard water before, then you know how addicting it can be. Perhaps the best part about it is that you can make it as extravagant or as rugged as you wish. A day on the ice could mean a several-mile hike, chiseling through feet of ice, and fishing with just a tip-up line. It could also include sitting in a deluxe ice castle watching television in your shorts, while cooking your favorite dinner on the stove.

First, you’ll need some warm clothing to stay on the ice for very long. Think cold weather camouflage clothing is just for hunting seasons? Guess again. Moon Shine Camo’s Undertow series fits in perfectly with any fishing activities, summer or winter. It features different shades of blue against a camouflage background. You’ll want a good polyester camo sweatshirt to keep your torso warm, which is where the Undertow camo pullover hoody really comes in handy.

Outdoor Clothing for the Ice Fishing Enthusiast | Moon Shine Camo

Pair your pullover hoody with the Undertow camo black vest and your core is sure to stay toasty on the ice. It has PROTEK softshell armor and a stand-up collar to keep icy winds from sending a chill down your spine. You definitely need to keep your head warm while on the ice, as you won’t stay fishing long without a good hat. The Moon Shine fleece beanie is reversible, made of polyester, and will keep your head protected for long days.

Moon Shine Camo for the Ice Fishing Enthusiast

As far as other gear, you’ll need a few more essentials. Find a decent shelter if you’ll be fishing a lot throughout the season. You’ll be very glad to have it when the mercury really drops. There are lots of DIY options, but a lightweight shelter on a sled is often the best option for portability. You’ll also need a chisel or gas/electric auger to drill your holes. Obviously you’re going to require ice rods, reels, and tackle appropriate for the species you’re targeting. Here’s a tip for new ice anglers: attend an ice fishing seminar at a sporting goods store. They’ll have lots of specific gear recommendations, will provide some tips and tactics, and can answer any specific questions you have.

When it comes to species to pursue, it will greatly depend on the lake you’re fishing. It’s a safe bet that you’ll find panfish (e.g., crappies, bluegill, pumpkinseeds, etc.) in almost any water body in America. Panfish are best targeted by a light rod and line, and using small ant-type jigs or 1/32 oz. spoons, either of which should be tipped with a minnow or grub. If you’re going for perch, sauger, or walleye, try using 1/16 to 1/4 oz. spoons tipped with a minnow head, jigging Rapalas, or rattle baits. It’s always fun to target northern pike through the ice using a tip-up system. Simply bait a quick-set rig with a large and lively sucker minnow, set the flag, and relax until the flag pops up! If you’re lucky enough to pursue trout (e.g., rainbows, brown, lake, cutthroat, etc.) through the ice, the best options seem to be 1/16 to 1/4 oz. tube jigs with white or olive tube worms, or similar-sized spoons tipped with a piece of cisco.

Just keep safety at the forefront of your mind. Ice fishing is by definition never 100% safe. But if you use common sense and follow these safety tips, you shouldn’t have any problems. Never go onto a waterbody your first time without first checking the ice quality. For early ice, take a chisel with you and aggressively poke the ice ahead of you as you walk. You may also want to wear a life jacket and some ice picks around your neck. Occasionally stop and drill a hole to check the ice thickness. Three to five inches should be sufficient for walking and even light ATV traffic. You should plan on at least 12 inches before considering driving a vehicle onto the ice though. The biggest safety tip is to always let someone know where you’ll be fishing. Hopefully these tips will find you on the ice soon!

Cold Weather Clothing | Get the Right Gear To Keep You Warm This Fall

Dress for Warmth | Beat Fall Temperatures with Moon Shine Camo

Fall is here. The leaves have almost completely turned, and cold fronts have begun working their way out of the North, reminding us of the short days and much colder nights to come. It’s important, especially if you have young children, to understand how cold weather clothing works to contain body heat and how you can maximize the effectiveness of your outdoor clothing depending on the weather conditions on a given day.

“It’s not the heat. It’s the humidity that’ll kill ya.” This popular movie quote made by John Candy in Cool Runnings, while comical, does have some truth to it. Cold temperatures alone are bearable and can be remedied by a light base layer and a jacket to contain your body heat. Humidity, on the other hand, adds a new element to the weather conditions that a base layer and a jacket simply can’t protect against.

While assembling your cold-weather wardrobe for the coming months, it’s important that you have a jacket that can protect you from humidity and precipitation like rain and snow.

Muddy Girl Pink Camo Softshell Protek Jacket

Sometimes, but not always, quality cold weather gear will be both waterproof and windproof. A piece of outdoor clothing may be waterproof or water resistant but not contain wind resistant fabric. This will leave you shivering in your boots on a windy day because while you will be dry, the wind will cut right through to your core, decreasing your body temperature. On the other hand, a piece of cold weather clothing may be wind resistant but not waterproof or even water-resistant. It’s important that your cold weather gear be both waterproof and wind-resistant. If nothing else, make sure your outermost layer has both of these attributes.

In addition to a protective outer layer, the other thing that is important to keep in mind while dressing for warmth this fall is layering. As we mentioned earlier, a light base layer and an outer jacket are sometimes enough to get the job done, but when your plans involve harsh weather conditions or longer exposure, you need to consider a layering system that keeps focuses on retaining heat and keeping the cold out. Start with the layer closest to your skin. Find a garment that fits snug so that your skin is in constant contact with the fabric. Ideally, the inner lining is fleece or something similar that produces heat as friction with your skin occurs. Move out one layer and your going to want something that really contains the heat produced by your base layer. A heavy sweatshirt, down vest, or even a second base layer will increase the amount of body heat contained. For your outermost layer, a piece of cold weather clothing as described above should be worn to keep you dry and protected from the wind, as well as contain whatever heat may have escaped your inner and middle layer.

Different people produce and retain heat differently. Try this layering system for yourself and adjust for your comfort. What matters most is that you are protected from the elements and can do what you love to do during the fall and winter months warm and dry.