I swear some of those holes people punch on those lakes...I'm shocked kids haven't drowned or there a thread about "lost my vexilar" down the hole.
Why do people use 8+ inch holes
I've caught some of biggest fish icefishing. I was using 8'' holes when I caught a 30'' 10.8 LB. walleye 4 hours after set up. It was about zero and even using hole covers the hole had shrunk down to 7''. I had a fun time trying to get his head in the hole ( ice was about 18'' thick and I was using 8 lb. mono leader so I could not horse him in ) If you are fishing gamefish a 8-10'' hole is optimal. During most of the icefishing season old holes from the day before freeze up fast before they swallow up young children. So my advise use the biggest hole if you have a chance for trophy fish.
I wonder why people complain about 8" and bigger holes. Ice is dangerous, watch out ALL THE TIME. You will still probably get hurt sometimes
Why use 8"+ holes?Because you can!But 10" holes inside a portable can swallow stuff more easily-hehehe.A Marcum shuttle will fit,thankfully they are somewhat water-proof.Had to retrieve a friend's last year in 7' of water.
I use an 8" auger.
My truck has 8 cylinders, I have a color TV and I buy 2-ply cushy toilet paper too...I hope my life of excess isn't making anyone mad.
50 years ago pretty much all there was for augers were 8". I cant go bigger because my tube is 9". and the same jiffy still runs like a top.
8"+ is like throwing a hot dog down a hallway. It's just not as enjoyable as something smaller.....
Stepped in a huge whole that was from melting, and also stepped into a crack, up to my thigh. Both times had no clue because of fresh snow covering.
In my experince, several reasons.
~Don't freeze up. When me and guys I fish with, especially earlier ice, limited snow, or very clear water, we set our tip ups, and get away! We stay away until we have a flag, feel the need to check them, or pull up to move or leave. Bigger holes stay open way longer.
~Sight fishing, most common on great lakes ice, or fishing trout on very clear water. Bigger hole allow more view. Drill a 6" hole and look down in a dark shack, and see how much area you can watch, than try it with a 10". You can see way more than double the area with a 10"
~Jigging Lake Trout, or any large aggressive fish. Can be very difficult to get them to turn up into a 10" at times. They can also be very girthy fish. 40" pike maybe 20lbs, or not even. 30" walleye, pretty consisently 10lbs. A laker can be 35-36" and over 20lbs. I caught one on Superior, 38" and 28lbs. They don't continue to keep putting on the length like other species, but do put on girth/ weight. I have also seen a laker caught that was 36" and 15lbs, so they can vary tremendously. They also have a tendency to go nuts when you get them by the hole.
~Room, really nice to jig out of a 10" hole with vexilar than an 8", especially for game fish. If I fish an 8" hole and get a nice fish, i do anything i can to get graph out of the way before getting fish into the hole. With a 10" I don't worry about it nearly as much.
These are my opinions and observations from fishing many different species all over WI, MI, MN and Ontario in last 15-20 years. I'm curious to hear what some others have to say.
Doesn't anyone watch where they walk or what. I have never stepped in a hole that wasn't mine. Kids yeah maybe not paying attention, but adults? And yes if you bring very small children say under 3 years of age, you should be watching them like a hawk anyway, you would do the same thing at home, right?
Something to remember guys that fish a 6 or 7 inch hole and say they pulled fish out of it. A 20 pound pike or 10 pound walleye most likely has girth bigger then hole. It may fit up hole by having its insides all smashed together which in return can cause major harm to that fish if you plan to release it. Yes it may swim off but the damage is done and that fish may die because of it. As far panfish getting off and turning down the hole. You still have time to grab plus it a panfish you most likely have more under you.