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Lake Michigan Ice Fishing

Lake Michigan Fishing Tips, Tricks, Techniques, Articles and Information
Tip-ups for Ice Fishing

     Wednesday, October 22, 2014
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Ice Fishing tip-up
Tip-ups are used ice fishing to allow setting up multiple lines and baits. You must check your local and state fishing regulations to determine if tip-ups are legal and the maximum number that a single angler can set. Some states allow three tip-ups per angler, but local lake regulations can either disallow their use or limit the number allowed.

Ice fishing tip ups hold fishing line on a spool that is held underwater. The spool containing the fishing line being held underwater helps prevent freezing of the fishing line to the spool. The basic design has the spool attached to a metal shaft. The shaft extends above the water and has two nubs attached to the shaft. Usually one nub will be smooth and the other one on the opposite side of the shaft will have a groove or notch. A flagIce Fishing tip-up flag is attached to the base of the tip up with a spring mechanism. When your bait is lowered into the water below the ice fishing hole, the tip up is placed straddling the hole. The flag is bent over and held by one of the two nubs. The tip up should be positioned so that the nub you are using if pointed at the direction that the wind is blowing from. The two different nubs allow for either a smooth release of the flag if the spool starts rotating or the notched nub allows a little more tension. When a fish grabs your bait and starts to swim away, line will pull from the spool. The spools rotation turns the shaft, which will then rotate the shaft away from the flag that is secured in place by the nub. The result is that the flag will pop up, which signals a fish has bit the bait.

Different Tipup designs:

plastic tip-up   Plastic or Wooden Tip-up
The most commonly used tip-ups are either made from wood or plastic. They straddle the ice fishing hole.
 
round ice fishing tip-up   Round Tip-up
Round tip-ups have the same basic design as the plastic or wooden tip ups. The difference is that they are circular. This design change allows them to cover the entire ice fishing hole, which can help insulate the hole and help prevent refreezing. The round tip up in the picture has a light alarm attached to the flag. At night the alarm will shine a small light and make a noise when the flag is upright.
 
pole tipup   Pole Tip Ups
Pole tip-ups are primarily used when heavy or deep snow can obscure vision of the tip up flag.


Keeping blowing snow out of the ice fishing hole:

ice fishing with blowing snow   Ice fishing with blowing snow will require constant attention to your tipups. The snow and freezing temperatures can freeze a hole in a matter of minutes.
 
ice fishing with blowing snow   Many ice fishermen will either make or buy ice fishing hole covers. They can easily be made by cutting a 16 to 18 inch circle from heavy plastic or rubber. A slot is cut to the center of the circle for the shaft of the tipup. Some use old car floor matts or even thick leftover carpet scraps.
 
ice fishing hole cover   The hole cover prevents snow from entering the hole and slows refreezing.


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