I got into ice fishing when I started dating my now husband. Ice fishing is one of his favorite winter hobbies, so naturally I joined in and started to enjoy it also. I was new to the sport, but my husband taught me all the ins and outs. The rush of running to the tip up when a flag goes up and pulling in the line is what keeps me coming back. If you don’t have someone to teach you, I recommend spending a day at The Wild Center. There, they have a learn-to-ice-fish guided experience on Green Leaf Pond. Once getting the hang of the sport, you’ll be ready to go out on your own and catch a trophy fish.
After your ice fishing lesson, you’ll need to make a stop at a few local shops to gather all the correct gear needed for the sport. Tip ups, line, bait, and an auger will get your started. But don’t forget to stock up on warm drinks and snacks to keep the family happy on the ice!
Ice Fishing Shops
Mountain Market Bait & Tackle
Mountain Market Bait & Tackle has everything you need to get started on the ice. From tip ups to live bait and a great selection of craft beers and ciders as well as snacks, stop here before any ice fishing trip to stock up. Ask the employees about the best fishing holes!
Tupper Lake Bait & Tackle
Tupper Lake Bait & Tackle is located at the Red Top Inn, which is a perfect lodging property if you want to be close to the ice for your fishing trip! Located right across from Tupper Lake, Tupper Lake Bait & Tackle has live bait for ice fishing, and one of the largest bait selections for rod fishing. Stay at The Red Top Inn, get your bait, and walk across State Route 30 to try your hand at ice fishing on the big lake!
Make sure to get your fishing license before heading out on the ice! Fortune’s Hardware can fix you up with the license and any other gear you may need.
Where to take the family
Check out these three family-friendly ice fishing locations. Ice fishing is a great socially distant activity. These different fishing holes all provide room to spread out and have your own place to adventure for the day.
Little Wolf Pond
Little Wolf Pond is the perfect spot to ice fish with the family. It's a smaller body of water so the hike from the car to your ice fishing spot isn’t too long. This way if someone gets cold or wants to go back to the car, you aren’t far away. There is usually safe ice here but as always we recommend you check with the Visitor's Center or a bait shop before heading out. The chances of catching fish here are always good, and sure to put a smile on your child’s face.
Tip: Bring ice skates for the kids and a shovel and make them an ice rink to pass the time!
Raquette Pond, right across from McDonald’s, is a popular ice fishing spot. You will see multiple ice shanties out there for the whole season. There has been rumor of some pretty large fish caught out of Raquette Pond, and there is a reason people come back every year to fish it. Parking at the Tupper Lake Municipal Park and being close to the ice makes it a convenient and easy spot to access with a family.
Depending on where you want to fish on Lake Simond, this can be a bit longer of a walk. Parking at the Rod and Gun club on Lake Simond Road, walk out on the ice and pick a fishing spot anywhere to the right. Be leery of heading too far left as the channel runs that way and the ice can become more dangerous. Lake Simond is the home of one of the largest fishing derbies in New York state, and there have been some record-setting fish caught here. Spend a day out there and you may catch one for yourself!
Bring the family to Tupper Lake this winter to try out a new winter activity. Spend a day at The Wild Center learning to ice fish and then take to the big lakes to try your hand at catching a prize. No matter the catch, it’s sure to be a time of fresh air, frozen lakes, and family memories to last a lifetime! Book a room, grab a warm dinner, and enjoy your stay in Tupper Lake.