I haven't ice fished since I was a kid, but our youngest has been begging for several years to go. I didn't have much desire to freeze to death sitting on a 5 gallon bucket and to top it off, we didn't have any of the equipment.
Well, this year for Christmas I caved and decided we'd get him set up with everything he'd need to start ice fishing.
My grandpa, his great grandfather, built these two ice sleds that can haul equipment out, then be tipped on end to serve as a shelter to sit in. He made them 25 years ago. I knew they were still around, so I hunted them down, gave them a fresh coat of paint, and rigged up a tarp to go between them to stop the wind and hold the heat in. On Christmas our youngest got the 2 ice shacks, an ice auger, pole, lures and a heater.
Today was the first time we tried them. They worked pretty well. We caught a handful of small fish and really had a great time. We stayed toasty with the heater and were out on the ice at Holmes Lake still catching fish well past dark. I admit, I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. We talked about using plywood instead of a tarp so they could be used independently or hooked together, but for now the tarp worked fine.
It's neat to see the ice shacks being used again for the first time in 20 years. And he's proud to be using something his great grandpa built.