Every fisherman knows that keeping your feet warm and dry is of the utmost importance. This is doubly the case when it comes to ice fishing. You’re in weather well below freezing and often the wind is blowing something fierce.
I’ve seen too many trips end early due to people being unprepared for the job. That’s why you need to have the best ice fishing boots you can get.
The second most important thing to have is beer, but that is another thing all together.
Do I need Specialized Boots For Ice Fishing?
You absolutely are going to want boots that are made with ice fishing in mind. There are a few qualities that are very important when being in that environment.
- Waterproof – If your boot even allows a small amount of moisture to accumulate on the inside it’s a no go. Nothing ends a trip faster than wet feet and socks.
- Insulation – The only thing that should be cold while your out there is your beer. Don’t buy inferior quality boots that are going to leave you feeling uncomfortable.
- Grip – You’re going to be spending the day literally walking on ice. You need a solid grip that’s not going to let you down. I’ve personally seen falls end in a hook through the thumb, don’t let that be you.
You need a combination of all three to make a boot that’s going to keep you safe and comfortable while out on the ice. But that’s not the only thing you need to look for. Price is another important factor that needs to be considered.
The problem is, there are hundreds of boots made by dozens of different companies. It’s difficult to sift through the overpriced crap to find quality boots at a reasonable price. That’s where I come in, I’ve researched and reviews dozens of companies and boots to bring you the best boots for ice fishing.
As a final note, you should always pair good ice fishing boots with heavy thermal socks for added warmth.
Ice Fishing Boots Reviews 2016
Sorel Men’s Conquest Ice Fishing Boot Review
These are my personal favorite and what I consider the best boots for ice fishing. They have 400g of thinsulate insulation that’s rated to keep your warm until about -40 degrees. They completely lock out moisture with a built in gaiter bootie and enclosure.
The EVA footbed gives a ton of comfort by absorbing and displacing the shock of stepping on the ice. They are also completely removable for easy cleaning.
Why We Love Them: Typically boots that offer this level of comfort, warmth, and waterproofing are very heavy and inflexible. That’s not the case with these, they are relatively light and don’t feel stiff.
Where We Think They Could Do Better: Unfortunately, they have about a 2% failure rate within the first 6 months. Most of the time it won’t be a problem but when you’re spending more than $100 on boots they shouldn’t break down so quickly.
Next up we have Artic MuckBoots. This is one of my favorite outdoorsman brands as they specialize in hunting, fishing, and camping. They manufacture really good ice fishing boots that are ready to stand the test of time. Out of all the boots we review, Muckboots always get the highest comfort ratings. They fit like a glove and stay that way.
They’re rated for temperatures of -40 degrees Fahrenheit and paired with the right socks can even go below that.
Why We Love Them: There just so incredibly comfortable. No other boots can compare to keeping your feet feeling amazing while lugging gear through snow and ice.
Where We Think They Could Do Better: Because they lacking a sealing bootie, treading through deep snow sometimes leads to ice getting into the boot. It’s not a terribly big deal if you have them tucked under your pants but it can happen.
Salomon Tundra Snow Boot Review
Salomon is a big name when it comes to winter sports. What started out as ski boots has transformed into all the major winter sports and hobbies. Similar to the other boots they are rated for -40 degrees Fahrenheit.
These run a little small and I recommend to size up by 1.
Why We Love Them: While most boots don’t give you much of a choice in the width department these are perfect for those of us with wide feet. For this reason they are a bit more niche than the other but offer the same level of safety, comfort, and durability.
Where We Think They Could Do Better: They do feel a little stiff and inflexible. I wouldn’t want to hike in these boots but it’s not a problem for fishing.
LaCrosse Hunt Pac Extreme Boot
Last but certainly not least we have LacRosse Hunt Pac Extreme. They have a whopping 2000g of insulation that will keep your feet warm up to -70 degrees Fahrenheit. To fit that much insulation into one boot they have to use the latest technology and highest quality materials. This of course increases the cost but it’s worth every penny if you’re going to be out at night or in the most extreme temperatures.
Besides warmth they have incredibly traction control, a moisture proof bootie, and an EVA foot-bed for added cushioning and support.
These are the best ice fishing boots and because of the increased cost I only recommend these to the buy die-hard ice fisherman.
Why We Love Them: There is no boot better for keeping your feet warm. They also have extreme traction control and wet ice shouldn’t be a problem.
Where We Think They Could Do Better: These boots aren’t exactly light. Expect them to way on you after a day of walking. That’s the price paid for all the extra warmth and protection they offer.