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And we're not talking about fruit or gourmet desserts! White fishing, ice fishing, winter fishing, tomcod fishing and fishing for small channel fish all refer to the same fishing activity – one of the most original winter activities here in Québec!

What does it involve?

Ice fishing is the only kind of fishing you can do in winter! When it's been cold long enough for lakes and rivers to be covered with a thick layer of ice, the municipalities where this activity takes place organize themselves to provide fishing enthusiasts with cabins and/or sites suitable for catching fish.

You'll be surprised to learn that many species of fish, large and small, can be caught during the cold season. You'll have the chance to catch walleye, speckled trout, pike, redfish, cod, tomcod and even halibut in places!

Over the years, trophy fish have also been caught. This emotionally-charged activity has given anglers a thrill with these spectacular catches! Imagine the adrenalin rush of battling a huge beast for hours on end, extracting a halibut weighing over a hundred pounds from a hole drilled through the ice, or catching hundreds of small channel fish... It's sure to capture the interest of fishing enthusiasts, winter activity lovers and thrill-seekers alike!

Much more comfortable than it looks!

Fishing in the freezing cold of winter can be a daunting prospect for even the hardiest of souls! And yet, it's one of the most comfortable fishing activities you can enjoy with your partner, family or friends. You'll discover a unique and authentic pleasure that's as comfortable as it gets.

Fishing camp has never been so close to your line! In some places, you'll be just a few steps away from a hole drilled in the ice.
A cabin will be available for you to warm up, rest or even enjoy a meal. At some sites, you can even fish directly from the hut, above the hole, without ever being exposed to the winter winds!

So there's no longer any excuse for not practicing your favorite sport, even in winter. Take the opportunity to introduce your children or partner to the sport. You'll be hooked! Start a new family tradition to practice together during the coldest months!

Where to go for this wonderful activity?

Specialized fishing centers and a number of outfitters offer ice-fishing stays, providing all the equipment you need to practice the sport (rods, tip-ups, bait), plus a wood-heated cabin! But many municipalities are also renowned for this popular winter activity. You'll find all the information you need in a quick Internet search. As the dates vary according to whether the waterways freeze over, it's important to check regularly on the progress of preparations.

The Québec’s hunters and fishermen federation website provides a wealth of valuable information to help you get ready.

Tips and advice

For a successful ice-fishing experience, as with any other outdoor activity, it's important to be well prepared and to take along the equipment you need to practice the sport. In this case, any equipment not provided by your site should be your responsibility. But we also suggest that you consider the following points to help you get the most out of your activity.

Although you'll be in a heated cabin (for the most part), you'll still need to dress well. A multi-layer system is a must. Warm for outside, but lighter for inside the cabin, give yourself the comfort of options! (T-shirt, thermal sweater, micro down jacket, insulated shell, snow pants and accessories (toques, mittens, gloves, neck warmer, etc.)). A good pair of boots (you'll be out on the ice) is essential. Effective insulation for your feet, and why not a spare pair of socks to keep your feet dry!

A meal and snacks, as this is a full-day activity, are also essential. Don't forget to stay well hydrated: you'll be in a heated cabin, so the air will be dry. You'll be thirsty! Why not treat yourself to a hot chocolate? Or mulled wine?

And don't forget to bring a camera, because you'll want to immortalize these wonderful moments. And even some card games! To keep you entertained while you wait for the bite!

To find out more

Download Pêche hivernale : techniques, leurres et astuces pour la pêche aux dorés, à la perchaude et au brochet. for pro tips on attracting the big trophy fish of ice fishing.

The Québec’s hunters and fishermen federation website is also rich in information of all kinds, such as: