Best Ice Fishing Lures and Jigs for Walleye, Crappie and Perch 2020 – Review

Having a hard time choosing the best ice fishing lures and jigs for walleye, crappie and perch in 2020? You have come to the right place!

Quick Overview - Best Ice Fishing Lures and Jigs for Walleye, Crappie and Perch 2020

Buying Guide

The key to success out there on the ice is taking the right jigs and lures with you. This requires a lot of knowledge and understanding about the lures. You need to know which lures and jigs are ideal under the specific ice fishing conditions. In this buying guide, you will find that, and a lot more!

Why do you need to choose a special lure for ice fishing?

The first question that comes to your mind is that why do I need a specific lure for ice fishing. Various factors cause you to choose a particular lure, and the most important is the movement of the lure.

In the frozen water, the visibility is quite clear. Moreover, the fish take their time to observe the lure carefully before deciding whether it is worth going for or not.

If you manipulate the motion of your lure in a way that is enticing and alluring to the fish in the cold waters, you are already halfway there! You have to choose lures based on their motions and arrangements.

Locating Walleye

Walleye keep moving, always searching for their next meal. You need to stay mobile as well and plan ahead to ensure that your bait is within the feeding range of the fish.

Use Fishing Maps

You should use fishing maps and depth charts to plan the locations before you go on the fishing trips. You should choose 2-3 locations that have structural transitions of depth like mid-lake humps and near the shore. Walleye usually live in the depth of 15-20 ft. You should target the areas of transition.

Drill Multiple Holes

You should drill numerous holes, ideally using a battery-powered ice auger, in either a zigzag pattern or a grid pattern. Jig the ice fishing rod for 10 minutes in each hole until the fish strike. Walleye are relatively more active at night, near dawn and dusk than in the day. So, if you set up before sunset and keep fishing till the morning, you will catch plenty of walleye.

Types of Ice Fishing Lures

There are several types of ice fishing lures, and you can choose from any of them. Let’s take a look at the few available options that work pretty well.

Swimming Lures

If you are looking to attract Walleye with the help of a lure that looks like a real live baitfish, swimming lures are a good option. These lures are designed in such a way that they resemble live fish. They have a jigging motion so that the lures dart from one place to another. Swimming lures should be used near dusk or dawn and preferably in clear waters. They also work well in weed beds and around rocks.

Spoons

Another type of lures for ice fishing perch and crappie are spoons. They come in various shapes, sizes, and weights. However, the action of all of these is the same. They are slightly concave or flat. When they are jigged and then dropped in the water, they vibrate and flash a lot, imitating a fleeing or dying baitfish. They are easy to use and work best in clear waters.

Jigs

Ice fishers love jigs since they are the perfect combination with live bait. You can actively fish them like other lures, or you can passively fish under a float. The trick is to make sure that your jig gets to the depth where the fish are hiding. The jig has various ways in which it can be used. They can be used independently or combine them with more appetizing baits. They also act as lead weight at the end of your fishing line if paired with live bait.

  • Vertical Jigs
  • These lures are placed in the water vertically, exactly as the name suggests. The hook eye is present on the top of the lure. They work perfectly with lift-fall fishing systems and live bait. The rattle versions of vertical jigs are highly efficient when it comes to attracting fish.
  • Airplane Jigs
  • Airplane jigs have fins present at their ends that look like airplane wings, thus the name airplane jigs. When you tug the fishing line, they start to spin in a half-circle. The fish find this movement quite enticing and the chances of getting a striking increase.

Live Larva Ice Worms

When you are targeting smaller fish like perch and crappie, live larva ice worms work perfectly. You can use wax worms, butter worms, live minnows, spikes, etc. to catch plenty of smaller fish.

Color of Lures

There are lures of every possible color and hue out there. The choice of color depends on a few factors. Let’s take a look at them:

Time of the Year

Even though you are ice fishing and it is generally going to be cold throughout, it is essential to know which time of the season you are fishing in. If it is late in the winter or early winters, then you are not going to be concerned with the snow pack. In these conditions, you can use lures that are not very bright. Primary color lures work just fine.

On the other hand, if it is the middle of the winter, with gloomy and dreary weather conditions, the bright and luminescent colored lures work best. Walleye, crappie, and perch will see these fishes more easily and will respond quickly.

Water Clarity

In clear, clean water, primary-colored lures should be used. However, if the water is murky, you should use lures that have contrasting colors. This same rule applies to the clarity of the sky. If there is cloud cover or the sky is dark just before sunrise or after sunset, you need to use brightly colored lures.

Depth of the Water

When you drop down a lure in the water, the color slightly shifts as you vary the depth. For example, if you use a yellow, orange, or red lure, it will start looking greyish after a depth of only a few feet. On the opposite hand, lures that are bluish-greenish in color, hold up their colors in larger depth. Luminescent colors don’t change with the change in depth at all.

Energy Level of the Fish

The energy levels and aggressiveness of fish vary throughout the season. At the beginning of the winter, they have high energy and move quite a bit in the water. As the water freezes and the cold starts to set in, they become lazy and lethargic. To attract such kind of fish, you need to stick with natural colors. For aggressive fish, bright and luminescent colors would work well.

Important Buying Factors

Style of the Lures

The design of a lure is critical. Sometimes, flashy and life-like lures are used and occasionally slim, slender, standard looking lures work their magic. If your lure is light in weight and cuts easily through the water, the chances of catching fish increase.

The deeper the lures can go, the more the chances of catching fish. The way they are designed also ensures that they can handle the severe and harsh weather conditions. Some lures have features like glow-in-the-dark, etc., which make them more alluring and enticing.

Durability

You are going to use the lures and jigs in tough, cold, and harsh weather conditions. The degradation process of the baits intensifying due to the harsh natural elements. Look for baits that have a water-repellent coating and are also resistant to breaking and freezing.

Plastic baits and lures are used for this purpose. ABS plastic has water-resistant properties, so many lures have a coating of ABS plastic. Sometimes coatings of metals such as brass and nickel are used. Not only do they keep the lures safe from water damage, but they also refract light and make the baits more visible to the fish.

Size

Ice fishing lures and jigs come in various sizes and shapes. This is an essential feature that plays a significant role in the efficiency of the lure. Large lures are usually used for larger fish like walleye, trout etc. smaller baits tend to attract small fish like crappie and perch. The size determines the depth to which the lures can go and the casting distance of the baits.

Ease of Use

You are already out fishing in the cold, icy lake. You don’t need any added discomfort because of tough-to-use fishing gear. Baits and lures that have a sturdy construction and are balanced tend to move more quickly in the water than those that are not well-balanced. The lifelike motion of the baits attracts the fish present in the depths of water.

Not only the design but the materials used in the construction also play a role when it comes to ease of use. Moreover, the shape of the bait also matters. The shape controls the penetrating ability and the casting distance of the bait.

Accessories

There are various accessories that you can use with your lures and jigs. You can place a skirt on the jig made from hair, feathers, or plastic. This will make the bait even more alluring to the fish searching for food.

The Best Ice Fishing Lures and Jigs – Our Top Picks

As the temperature starts to drop and snow and ice start to build up over the lakes, you need to take out your ice fishing gear. Whether you are ice fishing for walleye, perch, crappie, or any other fish, you need to choose the right lures to get the fish biting.

But with so many baits and lures out there in the market, it is not an easy task to choose the perfect lure and jig. We have chosen the top 3 best ice fishing lures and jigs for Walleye, crappie and perch. Moreover, the buying guide will help you a lot in choosing the lures on your own.

Let’s get started.

A freen fishing lure, one of the best ice fishing lures and jigs

The Best Overall Ice Fishing Lure for Walleye, Crappie and Perch

Best All Around Ice Fishing Lure for Walleye, Crappie and Perch

Pros

Cons

  • 27 pieces
  • 6 different styles
  • Treble Hook
  • New Designs
  • Storage container included
  • The eye-hole isn’t pre-cleaned

The sougayilang fishing jig is available in 3 different sets of 25 jigs, which provides you with a large variety of jigs to choose from at an affordable price. Every jig in this set comes with a treble hook. The state-of-the-art and modern designs help you in attracting fish quickly.

There are 6 styles, including minnow spoon and slick. The storage container that comes along ensures that you store your jigs easily and sort them according to the different styles, thus making them easier to use.

You will find multi-colored, vibrant lures as well as bold, solid-colored jigs in this set. You can use any jig that you think is suitable in the conditions of your fishing.

You can use these jigs in saltwater as well as in freshwater. You don’t have to worry about the damage caused by exposure to the saltwater as the jigs are protected against such damages. The hooks on these jigs have been mechanically sharpened to provide you with maximum penetration.

The Best Value Ice Fishing Lure for Walleye, Crappie and Perch

Best Value Ice Fishing Lure for Walleye, Crappie and Perch

Pros

Cons

  • 3-hooks
  • Bright Colors
  • Life-like motion
  • Durable
  • Lead Construction

The Sougayilang Ice Fishing Lure employs a 3-hook system. The hooks are present on the bottom, front, and rear of the bait. This ensures that you hold on to the fish after it strikes pretty easily.

The lures in this kit have a life-like appearance and help a lot in catching lazy and lethargic fish, hiding in the water.

The vibrant and bright colors not only appear appealing to the prey but also help with the visibility at various depths.

The construction of the lures is pretty solid, and the lures are balanced and light in weight. They have a solid appearance and are durable. The lures are affordable as well and certainly the best cheap ice fishing lure on the market, in our view.

The Best Ice Fishing Lure for Walleye, Crappie and Perch for Beginners

Best Ice Fishing Lure for Walleye, Crapie and Perch for Beginners

Pros

Cons

  • Work well in both saltwater and freshwater
  • Glow-in-the-dark lures
  • Durable
  • Works with different species of fish
  • Contains lead

The Zwming Ice fishing kit has 25 lures in it along with a convenient storage box, which helps in keeping the lures organized. The lures come in a variety of shape so that you can choose the one which suits the weather conditions and is perfect for the species of fish you are targeting.

Some lures are constructed to look like an insect while others are in the form of balancing jigs. Every bait has a different color and can be used with varying depths of water.

The stripes and bright colors on the lures give them a life-like appearance that entices any fish that comes into contact with it. The light reflectors intensify the vibrant colors of the lures.

The hooks are made from carbon steel to ensure the durability and strength of the lures. The tips are sharpened to make sure the fish doesn’t get away once it strikes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Some ice fishing lures are made from materials that are toxic and harmful to the fish in the water and even to humans. For example, lead is detrimental to both humans and fish. Make sure that no toxic materials are present inside the lures which will harm you or the life under the water.

You can use lures, and you can use live baits as well. The conditions and your expertise as an angler play an important part when determining whether to use live baits or artificial lures. With live bait, you get to use them only once. The artificial lures and can be used over and over again.

For some great ressources on igging techniques, check out berkley-fishing.

You have to take care of your lures to ensure that they last for quite some time. If you have been ice fishing in saltwater, rinse the lures thoroughly with plain water to make sure all the minerals come off. Use a cloth or soft brush to clean them. If there are any stains on them, you can even use dishwashing soap to remove it. Let them air-dry.