Preparing for an ice fishing trip is not like going out on the boat for a short fishing trip over the weekend. This level of sport requires finesse, preparation, and technique. Even more so than a regular fishing trip, staying well equipped during an ice fishing expedition is essential to maintaining your health while in the cold. By knowing how to keep warm during a long day ice fishing, you can rest sure that you will be well taken care of.
Start Off at a Comfortable Temperature
Any time you move into an extreme temperature, whether hot or cold, your body adjusts to that temperature. This could be an issue if you were hot prior to going outside in the cold, as this will cause you to sweat. Making yourself clammy and cold in this way is a bad combination for freezing temperatures. Therefore, make sure you are at a comfortable temperature before going out into the cold so that your body can appropriately adjust.
Less is more with layering. You should always start off with something thinner, such as a men’s thermal base layer, and only add layers until you are comfortable and warm, never until you are stuffy and hot. This could result in overheating, which would then cause you to lose much of your core heat and potentially become hypothermic.
Many people resort to drinking alcohol as a means to stay warm and pass the time while ice fishing. This may be a socially acceptable practice during the holidays, but it can harm you in extremely cold temperatures. Though the alcohol causes your core temperature to stay warm, it lessens your circulation and causes your extremities to become cold, which could lead to frostbite or worse.
Drinking water will keep your blood volume high, which allows your circulation to stay at a healthy level. Staying well hydrated enables your blood to act as an internal blanket, keeping your organs and musculoskeletal system warm and regulated.
Eat Enough and Stay Active
Eating snacks will also keep your metabolism active, which will help keep your body warm while you are out in the cold. If you eat nutritious snacks at regular intervals, chances are you will have enough energy to keep going for hours at a time. Also, whenever you can, get up and move around to stay active. This activity will help stimulate blood flow, keeping your temperatures a bit higher than they would be if you were static the entire time you are on your trip.