Covid prevented us returning in 2021 but here's something new. Before we started ice fishing we targetted the Red River's channel cats and carp in summer. Click here

We are available for club talks and slide show - click on the Contacts link for further details.

Diana's first ice trip

About us and how we started ice-fishing

We are Diana and Stephen Crook from Surrey, England, a fishing mad couple for over 30 years with pike as our main quarry. We have caught many pike over the years from rivers, lakes and gravel pits with a good number of them over 20 lbs in weight.

September 2001 brought us the opportunity to fish in Canada on the famous Red River at a town called Lockport in the state of Manitoba. We fished for the famous Red River Channel Catfish, learning the local tactics from our now good friend and angling buddy Carl Loutit. We have fished together for a number of years now always in September and it was on one of these trips that Carl suggested that we might fancy returning during the winter to sample the excellent ice-fishing on the Red.

Temperatures during the winter in Manitoba can be as low as -40 Celsius and feel even colder when you factor in the wind chill. We were a little apprehensive about fishing in such cold temperatures but in November 2005 we took the chance to pay a surprise visit. In November the river is just starting to freeze, its a time the locals call 'First Ice'. The river had about 3" of ice on it, just about enough to walk on. So, a couple of sessions were arranged by Carl and we caught some lovely pike to over 20lbs. We began to realise just how prolific ice fishing could be. We have been returning annually ever since. Hopefully this web site will give you an idea of what ice fishing is about, how prolific it can be and how, even in extreme low temperatures, it is possible to catch a pike of a life time.

Ice fishing safety tips

Recommended Minimum Ice Thickness Guide

2" - Stay off the ice
4" OK to ice fish
5" - OK for snowmobiles and ATVs
8 - 12" - OK for cars or small pick ups
Over 12" - OK for medium trucks

Advice For Ice Fishers

Never go out alone
Carry a phone, hot drinks and matches/lighter
Let your friends/family know where you are going
and when you will return
If driving on ice keep a safe distance from other vehicles
Carry chains, ropes and shovels
Drive with seat belts off and windows open

Frostbite Indicators

-10c to -24c Uncomfortably cold
-25c to -39c Risk of frost bite
-40c to -49c Frostbite can occur in 10 minutes
-50c and below frostbite can occur in 2 minutes

Diana's first ice pike

Stephen setting up

Stephen setting up

Carl & Scotty

Testing thickness

Testing thickness
Di's fiirst ice pike
Diana's first ice pike

Latest updates

Cats & carp on the Red River

updated - 16/03/21