How to use ice safety picks effectively

It’s winter and that means many of us practice ice fishing outdoors. So it’s important to consider ice safety precautions before going out there. Ice freezes in patches on lakes and ponds and moving from area to area can be unsafe. Dozens of people fall through the ice every year. Wearing a pair of ice fishing safety picks can mean the difference between a good experience and a tragic one. . Below are important ice safety tips that you should always keep in mind:

Ice fishing safety

If you fall into the water, you have to get out. Ice fishing safety picks can help you get off the ground quickly! Soaked clothing is heavy, cold water makes movement difficult and hypothermia can set in very quickly. It will take a while for people to gather ropes or ladders to aid in a rescue. To make sure you get out of there quickly, ice safety picks are the answer:

What are ice fishing safety picks?

Ice Safety Picks are handles made of wood or plastic with spike tips made of hardened steel. The tips are pointed, but not particularly sharp. They are possibly the cheapest and most essential ice fishing safety gear you own. They’re cheap so buy a pair or do it yourself if you are a home improvement.

Use of safety picks for ice fishing

You are cold and in shock. Your soaked clothing is heavy and you cannot control the slippery ice around the hole. The ice ax digs into the slippery surface and provides traction so you can pull yourself out of the water. Use short, choppy strokes and walk a short distance at a time. When you get out of the water onto the ice, roll away from the hole. Getting up can break more ice.

Also Known As: Some people refer to these essential pieces of ice fishing equipment as ice picks, hog’s claws, or ice claws.

Call them what you like, but next time you go ice fishing, have some ice safety picks with you. and don’t forget to read these great ice fishing safety tips before you set off.

Tom Keer

Tom Keer is an award-winning writer living on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. He is a columnist for the Upland Almanac, a contributing writer for Covey Rise magazine, a contributing editor for Fly Rod and Reel and Fly Fish America, and a blogger for the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s Take Me Fishing program. Keer is a regular contributor to over a dozen outdoor magazines on topics including fishing, hunting, boating, and other outdoor activities. When not fishing, Keer and his family hunt highland birds over their three English setters. His first book, A New England Coast Fly Fishing Guide, was published in January 2011. Visit him at or


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