Portable Ice Shanty – How to Choose
One of the biggest advantages to the many different models and styles of portable ice shanty on the market today is their ease of collapsing, setting up and moving. In deciding on what type and which options with the various types of ice fishing shelters, it is important to keep in mind the type of fish you will be after, how long a period of time you wish to fish, and what conditions you can reasonably expect to encounter on the ice.
Many winter fishermen make decisions on a portable ice shanty on one or two factors, but often this can lead to a poor match between the ice fishing shelter you really need and the ice fishing shelter you end up with. Some of the questions you need to ask when purchasing one of the many types of portable ice fishing shelters include:
1. How much money do you want to spend?
Portable ice fishing shelters can range in price from under a hundred dollars to several hundred dollars. Typically the biggest factor in the price of ice fishing shelters is the type of material that the ice fishing shelter is made of and the additional features that are included.
2. How long do you typically fish at one time?
If you only plan to fish for an hour or two, it is less important to be concerned with long-term heat retention and other additional comforts of the portable ice shanty. Since most portable ice shanty are designed to act as a wind break and heat trapping system, the less time you are out on the ice, the less critical this feature will be. Many simple three sided or drop front ice fishing shelters are great for those who only need a couple of hours protection and these ice fishing shelters will be less costly that more complete ice fishing shelters.
3. How many people will use the ice fishing shelter?
Portable ice shanty are typically made to comfortably seat one, two or four people. Larger ice fishing shelters are available. Typically the larger the ice fishing shelters the more they will cost and the heavier they will be to pack and move from place to place. Larger ice fishing shelters will also be harder to heat and to keep warm for extended periods of time. Cramped ice fishing shelters can be both uncomfortable and will make landing and keeping fish difficult.
4. What type of fish are you after?
Some species of fish such as pike will move around the lake very rapidly as they follow the bait fish. Highly mobile and portable ice shanty such as flip-over ice fishing tents or three-sided ice fishing shelters are very easy to take down and put up, even in very windy conditions, and you can more easily change your spot.
5. Will the ice fishing shelter be durable enough for conditions you fish?
It is important to keep in mind that the portable ice fishing shanty you choose is durable enough to match the conditions where you fish. On lakes and areas where winter wind is a concern, canvas and very lightweight materials will not be strong enough to withstand the cold winds, so choosing a heavier weight canvas and sturdier frame will be a more practical choice for an ice fishing shelter.