Best Ice-Fishing Gear in Alaska
Frabill I-Float Jacket and I-Float Bib
Testers appreciated the high-quality jacket and bib that are warm, comfortable, windproof and waterproof. The jacket is a Coast Guard certified PFD and also comes with ice picks and holsters, two critical safety features for an ice angler that breaks through the ice. Plus, both the jacket and bib have mesh self-drainage openings in the event that you fall into the water. We appreciate the pockets and quality zippers on both garments and are impressed with the safety features and smart design on both items.
Frabill Bro Sidestep Flip-Over Ice Shelter
This ice shelter is easy to transport, and quick to set-up and collapse. We enjoyed the comfortable seats and were warm and protected from the cold and wind due to the shelter’s fully quilted insulation. Windows on all sides made it possible to view multiple tip-ups. Testers appreciated the windows and window covers (for letting-in or blocking-out light), and vent openings for use when using a propane heater. The shelter is well-designed for all the features needed when ice fishing in very cold temperatures.
Frabill Ice Hunter Series
We tested the Jeff Gustafson 38-inch Ice Rod Combo. Our hard-water tester really appreciated the smooth-operating reel, especially when fishing in temperatures well below freezing. He also commented that the graphite rod is sensitive, allowing him to detect light bites, yet has a rigid-enough backbone to handle big fish. The rod was designed to tame lake trout and northern pike.
HT Enterprises Arctic Fusion TX Spinning Combos
This series of ice rods offers HT’s “Total Touch” handle system, which allows the angler to feel the line and the blank. We think that the detection of subtle strikes increased our hook-up rates when using the 25-inch medium action combo this past winter. The tapered blank is responsive and sensitive. The three-bearing reel worked well in cold conditions. There are several actions and lengths available in the Arctic Fusion TX series to allow anglers to target a range of Alaska gamefish from stocker rainbows to toothy northerns and beefy lakers.