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Upper Mid-U.S. Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota and Nebraska. Post fishing reports, ask for information, discuss this area...

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Old 12-26-2012, 12:52 PM
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Default Winter Fishing

I'm going to get out for a few hours next week. It's cold! Any tips for fishing in cold weather?
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:27 PM
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Default Re: Winter Fishing

What are you fishing for? Might get some more specific tips.

Generally I think fish tend to slow down as the weather gets cold. Here in Colorado we often fish painfully small flies Not sure about Iowa.
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Old 12-26-2012, 08:26 PM
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Default Re: Winter Fishing

Wool gloves and synthetic socks!
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:18 PM
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Default Re: Winter Fishing

Those shakable long lasting hand warmers that you can stick in your gloves saved the day when I went cold weather fishing last month in Iowa. Then as for the ice on the rod eyelets, I stuck a little vaseline on them to keep the ice off. I dunno, I think it worked a bit, but I still had to knock some ice off every so often. And I pretty much nymphed it for the day. Have fun!

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Old 12-26-2012, 11:21 PM
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Default Re: Winter Fishing

Dress in layers.. it's less bulky and if you get too hot you can always peel a layer off.. don't sweat too much.. wet clothes from heavy sweat can lead to hypothermia.. stay hydrated... buy a zippo hand warmer over those disposables.. you can fill them with coleman fuel.. super cheap to refill them with the coleman stuff over zippo or rosonol.. and it's all the same stuff
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Old 12-26-2012, 11:48 PM
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Default Re: Winter Fishing

Up here you set in an ice house with a good heater going and pull fish though round holes in the floor. If you want to do it in style there are people with big screen TV, generators, satellite TV,bunk beds, stove, carpet and pictures on the walls. I've been in ice houses that are nicer than my living room and have better electronics. One resort up here hauls a full survice bar out on the ice that seats 40, has a really big flat screen TV and you can fish while you drink and watch the football game. They take their ice fishing serious up here.

On a second note we now have enough ice on the lake you can drive anything. As soon as it warms up I am going to go to the West end of the lake and fish for big Pike.

Now to try and help you out with what you really wanted to know. I dress in layers. I use Neoprene waders with thinsulate insulated boots. I also wear glove that I can cast with and keep my hands dry. I bring two pairs because if you get one wet and your hands start to get cold you will get cold. I fish the river here right up till ice up most years. I didn't this year because we went from nice to seriously nasty like hitting a switch. This was the coldest Fall I have seen since I lived here. I have a pair of wool gloves with a rubber coating on the palm side. When those get wet or it gets colder, I switch to leakproof neoprenes with fingerless wool gloves over the top. Neoprenes alone don't keep you warm and wool gets wet and you will get cold. Together they work. It's not as easy to cast, but you learn to adapt.
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Old 12-27-2012, 09:58 AM
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Default Re: Winter Fishing

I'll be fishing a small trout stream in Iowa. Last night I picked up a balaclava and hand and toe warmers. I want to get a merino wool layer to wear over my synthetic base layer top. Still working on the gloves. I've seen neoprene mittens where the top pulls back and converts to fingerless gloves. I'm thinking of layering those with wool. Thanks for the help.
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Old 12-27-2012, 10:10 AM
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Default Re: Winter Fishing

Wool is definitely a very important element of winter dress - at least when it comes to fishing. Equally important is layering.

One very important factor that a lot of people seem to overlook is the base layer under the wool. Wool itself is quite itchy and you almost always want to wear something underneath. This accomplishes a couple of different things.

For starters, it stops the itchiness. If you are warm but itching constantly, you are going to be just as miserable as you would be if you were cold.

Second, it provides a layer that allows your body to breath a bit and for air to circulate.

The trick to this under layer is once again material. Do not use cotton as an under layer. You will be freezing the second you sweat. Instead, opt for a layer like underarmor that doesn't really absorb moisture so readily. Personally, the lighter this layer can be, the better. For instance, my base layer under my wool socks is a simple pair of nylon dress socks. They are extremely thin but stop the itch. With exception of the most extreme conditions, I only need this layer and 1 pair of wool socks to keep my feet toasty all day - this includes winter wading.

For gloves, it sounds like you are on the right track but I would urge you to buy, and have on your person at all times, at least one extra pair of each layer. Fly fishing is guaranteed to get water on your hands at some point. Having an extra pair lets you stay warm for twice as long.
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