Ice Huts Lake Nipissing

Ice Fishing Lake Nipissing

Toronto to Lake Nipissing

Every winter my husband heads north to Lake Nipissing Ontario to ice fish. Ice fishing is “open” on Lake Nipissing from about January 1 to mid-March, every year. Lake Nipissing is located about a 3.5 hour drive north (342km) of the Toronto area.

Toronto area to Lake Nipissing south shore via Highway 400 and 11
Toronto area to Lake Nipissing south shore via Highway 400 and 11

Ice fishing is an interesting hobby, and a wonderful outdoor winter family activity. It’s available in frozen lakes across North America, but this is our favourite locale. We can even ice fish on the small lake near our house – but the ice isn’t frozen for as long – and melts sooner – and there aren’t as many fish! On Lake Nipissing the ice is generally nice and thick, we know the area, AND my husband catches LOTS of fish every year.

You can be completely self-sufficient at ice fishing – drill your own ice holes and set up your own tent or ice hut, (if you know what you are doing) or you can rely on local ice fishing operators to make the process much easier for a quick getaway.

Please visit our post from last year for a more descriptive post about the experience. https://everydaylillie.com/2020/01/21/ice-fishing-adventure/

Snowmobile tracks on the Lake Nipissing ice
Snowmobile tracks on the Lake Nipissing ice

Day-Hut Ice Fishing

For this year’s first getaway – my husband rented a “day-hut” for two days of fishing, and he and the boys stayed in a local hotel overnight, booked separately. (Link to Ontario Staycation Tax Credit story). The operator of the day-hut, sets everything up, and transports the boys and their gear to and from the location via ATV or Snowmobile. This way, we know the ice is safe, we know how well the fish have been biting, and they can spend their time off fishing and enjoying themselves – instead of drilling holes in 12″ ice and setting up camp.

The view from the Day Hut - propane tank on back
The view from the Day Hut – propane tank on back

We have recently purchased a Lake Nipissing property, and so in the future, we may set up our own ice fishing hut and drill our own holes while we stay in our cottage, but for now we will go with the experts. There’s a lot to setting up an ice fishing location and winterizing a cottage – and this is supposed to be fun after all!

A cold day on Lake Nipissing - Ice Huts and Bungalows
A cold day on Lake Nipissing – Ice Huts and Bungalows

Ice Bungalow

It’s also possible to rent an “ice bungalow”, which is an ice fishing hut with sleeping accommodations. That’s right – you spend the whole day on the ice, and then you sleep there as well! These things get booked up though, so make your plans in advance of the season.

Lake Nipissing view from the lake
Lake Nipissing view from the lake

You bring your own food and gear, and the huts are generally heated, with outhouses, with woodstoves and even barbecues! The boys packed hot dogs for the barbecue, and purchased the fish bait from the hut operator.

Ice fishing bait and scoop
Ice fishing bait and scoop

If you would prefer to stay home in the warmth and just think about ice fishing, then watch the 1993 move – Grumpy Old Men with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon. My boys are nothing like Grumpy Old Men but they occasionally dress like that.

ice fishing grumpy old men 1993 move - Grumpy Old Men with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon.
1993 move – Grumpy Old Men with Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon.

Our favourite local Ice Fishing operators are Nanmark’s Lighthouse Resort located on the narrows leading into Callander Bay, Lake Nipissing. The ice fishing scenes in the movie are a good depiction of ice fishing though!

Fish in a bucket
My fish dinner

Here is a link to Lake Nipissing Ice Fishing Hut Operators.

Here is a link to: 10 Best Spots for Ice Fishing in Ontario.

This time around the boys had very cold weather, but the ice hut was warm inside, and they brought home fish for a nice supper.

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