Far too many ice fishermen have spent a day out on the frozen water only to go home catching a cold and nothing else. It happens more than you might think. So before you start outfitting yourself with boots, gloves, tents, rods, and other gear, it’s a good idea to do your research (like reading this!) and invest in a high-quality ice fishing suit.
Whether you prefer a separate jacket and bibbed pant or a one-piece suit, a good product will always keep you warm, dry, and still be functional enough to move around in and withstand the rigors of fishing. Likewise, any suit worth its weight will come with padded knees, lightweight, ergonomic design, adjustable and comfortable straps, and noncorrosive zippers and buckles.
Ice Fishing Bib Reviews – 2018
|Bibs and Pants||Features||Color||Check Price On Amazon|
|Arctix Men’s Tundra Ballistic Bib Overall||100% Nylon ThermaLock Fabric, Imported, 85 Grams of ThermaTech Insulation offers warmth in a lightweight, low bulk garment, ...||Black||Check Price|
|Frabill Ice Suit||Frabill Self-Rescue Ice Pick Set, Removable, Adjustable Hood with Sun Visor, Hand Warmer Pockets with Tricot Lining, ...||Black|
|Frabill I3 Bib||Full elastic shoulder straps with cam lock buckles, Internal knee and seat padding, Zipper vents for temperature regulation, ...||Black||Check Price|
|Clam Ice Armor Edge Cold Weather Suit||300D waterproof/windproof/breathable shell, Padded, 1000D Ballistic Nylon knees, 2-way front zip with magnetic storm flap, ...||Charcoal/Black||Check Price|
|Stormr Strykr Bib Pant||100% Polyester, Adjustable shoulder straps, vented back panel, Two Fleece-Lined chest hand-warmer rests, ...||Black|
This bib has fantastic insulation, but somehow, Artix managed to keep this garment light, so you don’t have to sacrifice warmth to keep from being weighed down. In fact, it’s equipped with micro-chambers that are designed to trap your body heat but still breath, wickingmoisture away. They also made this bib with durability in mind, with a ballistic shell that can not only weather any extreme conditions, but also protect you from hooks, sharp tools, or other dangers. You can be confident on the nastiest days with 100% nylon Thermalock fabric and 85 grams of Thermatech lightweight insulation, and anglers love its built-in hand warmers.
Frabill is known for producing great ice angling gear, and their Ice Suit is no different. They made it with those most inhospitable cold and stormy conditions, with a special emphasis on waterproofing. They did that by using a breathable 300 denier nylon Taslan shell, as well as 150g Thinsulate insulation to shield you from the biting wind. But this suit is also practical, with plenty of big pockets on the pants as well as on the chest area for added convenience. If the sun comes out or you step indoors, you can open up some of its zippered vents so you won’t overheat and don’t have to take it off, which is a feature I love. While Frabill doesn’t put out the cheapest gear, any fisherman will tell you that they offer great value as they keep you warm and comfortable season after season without wearing out.
Speaking of Frabill, serious ice warriors might want to check out their ‘I Series,’ which includes extreme-element protection across a variety of products. And one of my favorites is their I3 Bib. It’s manufactured with 150g 3M Thinsulate insulation that’s arguably the best snow and cold resistant material known to man. But Frabill didn’t forget about waterproofing, with 100% sealed seams on its 300 denier nylon Taslan shell. Not only is the material incredibly durable and weatherproofed, but you can tell this bib was made BY and FOR fishermen. The built-in knee padding and seat padding allows to you stay comfortable for long positions as you out-wait the fish below, and function meets form with its cam lock buckles and full elastic shoulder straps that keep you from getting fatigued or a stiff back.
One of the most trusted names in ice fishing, Clam rises to the top with their Ice Armor Edge suit. Putting it on for the first time, you’ll be impressed by how snugly it fits, offering flexibility and warmth without being bulky, stiff, or too tight. Not only can it weather the coldest temps with advanced waterproofing and wind resistance, but it’s ideal for use during your whole, i.e. fishing adventure with great ventilation and breathability. Even dipping your hand into the cold waters won’t ruin your day since it has a nearly-foolproof angle and wrist tightening system. Check the reviews and you’ll see that anglers love that is has padded, reinforced knees and rear end – something that’s sometimes forgotten by ice suit manufacturers. It also features a great way to store tools and gear by keeping them accessible with ‘D’ rings throughout the parka, and big, reflective safety strips as well.
One of the best-selling combinations on the market, throw a StormrStrykr jacket on top of these bib pants and you have an outfit to suffer through the coldest and harshest conditions – and come home with a cooler full of fish. They’re Neoprene material and Core and Fusion VAPR technology ensure that you’ll keep toasty. You’ll also stay bone dry thanks to its glued, blind-stitched and thermal tapped seams, but also won’t get weighed down or be too stiff to easily operate. Fishermen also love its 5-pounds positive buoyancy and practicality in saline or fresh water. No detail was left out, including abrasion-resistant material in high contact areas, extra fleece lining in cold zones, and great splash-proof pockets. They also made sure that every ankle, waist, and shoulder strap is easy to adjust and comfortable, and its exterior shell even offers 3M reflective graphics. It certainly doesn’t come cheap, but if ice fishing is a passion – not just a hobby – then it’s well worth it.
Other considerations include:
Dress in layers so you can peel off some clothing when you get too hot or replace items when they get wet.
Cotton kills! It’s so basic but worth noting again that cotton will easily get wet (from outside or within) and then retain the dampness and cold, ensuring that you’ll have to go home early to avoid hypothermia. Being warm is great, but if it means you’re too weighed down and stiff as a board, it’s no use to you. But a good suit is made of modern fabrics like polyester or polypropylene.
Popular options for shirts and pants can be wool or nylon since both are great insulators, but they can become heavy when wet, so try Spandex, polyester, or Lycra in layers, too. For an outer shell, you’ll want to make sure that moisture can escape so it should be breathable, but waterproofing and wind resistance are also incredibly important.
Luckily, these days, the top brands in ice fishing make so phenomenal bibs and suits that will keep you fishing for actual fish – not just a cold. Here are five of our favorites (in no particular order):