Ice fishing tech & clothing has come a really long way in the past decades. Earlier, fishers used to put on many tiny layers of cotton clothing for extra protection. But now, the times have changed, along with improved gear like ice-fishing cleats and waterproof boots, newer tech has developed for Ice fishing floatation suits.
In recent times, these suits are designed to be comfortable, warm, safe, waterproof, and buoyant. The overall aim is to make the fisherman’s job as easy as possible. This article will cover the various types of suits, jackets, and bibs and show you the features needed in finding the perfect one for you!
My Personal Recommendation
I highly recommend the WindRider Ice Fishing Suit if you’re looking for a flotation suit for your next ice fishing trip.
The suit includes an insulated jacket and bib. This combination is your first line of defense when ice fishing for long hours and especially when accidents happen.
It is made with foam and padding that aid in buoyancy in the water in case you fall. This safety feature really amps up your confidence as you’re sure you are safe and protected.
It also uses 3M thermal insulation to keep you warm all day. The jacket and bibs have double zippers for ventilation to prevent overheating.
On the other hand, if you want to purchase a separate jacket, go for StrikerICE Predator Jacket.
It utilizes a unique Sureflote Technology that can keep an average person afloat for up to two hours. It also features 100 g of Thermadex insulation for warmth and Hydrapore Waterproof Technology that can withstand extreme weather conditions.
If you’re looking for a bib, then go for StrikerICE Predator Bib.
It has almost the same features as the Predator jacket but in a bib form. It guarantees to keep you afloat in the freezing water, provide warmth, and waterproofing that is very durable perfect for ice fishing.
Before going on an ice fishing trip, make sure to test out the products first as different factors like weight, gears, environment and your preferences can disrupt the performance of the flotation gears.
Best Ice Fishing Floatation Jackets
An ice fishing floatation jacket is the outermost layer of the suits that keep you buoyant for enough time to save yourself in case you end up in the water. It is an ice fishing jacket that floats as while you are submerged, normal clothes will be of no help since they absorb all the water, making you heavier. Hence, this jacket will come in handy, should you be in an unfortunate situation.
StrickerICE Climate Jacket
Made out of polyester, this is a heavy-duty climate jacket. The StrickerICE Climate Jacket is set apart from other ice-fishing jackets as it gives you extra warmth. The G2 Softshell Jacket Liner is removable and also can be worn on its own if you need extra or low warmth. It is absolutely perfect for use all round the year. It has a durable hydrapore material which is rated 5000mm when it comes to waterproofing.
The material makes the jacket windproof and allows it to withstand extreme weather conditions. This jacket also comes with various features specially customized and made for fishing like a magnetic storm flap closure, a fast-drain hem, and sleeve cuffs. It is recommended that this jacket is paired with the ultimate StrickerICE Climate Fishing Bib for supreme outdoor gear that oozes maximum protection.
Stricker Men’s StrickerICE Predator Jacket
This jacket is made in the United States of America, out of 100% nylon. Designed with a Thermadex Technology, this jacket provides optimal warmth with 100 grams of Thermdex insulation and heavy-duty outdoor coverage. The Stricker Men’s StrickerICE Predator Jacket also comes with Surefloate Floatation Assistance that can keep an average-sized person afloat for up to 2 hours.
The hydrapore waterproof technology makes this jacket very breathable and gives it the ability to withstand and do well in extreme temperatures such as heavy rains, blizzards, and intense snowfall. Overall, it is a great quality outdoor gear and usually paired with the StrikerICE Predator Bib for ideal protection and safety.
Eskimo Lockout Ice Fishing Jacket
With a 600D Endura polyester outer-shell, this particular jacket keeps elements like wind, moisture, and cold out. It is a rugged shell that provides maximum protection from the elements outside. Moreover, the soft internal lining 210T combined with the 60 grams Thermodex insulation keeps your body warm and dry.
This jacket also comes with the Surefloate Assistance technology which provides buoyancy and keeps your afloat for an hour or two at max. The hydrapore also makes this jacket waterproof, windproof, and gives it the ability to withstand extreme weather conditions outdoors. The Eskimo Lockout’s overall sharp styling is super attractive with easy-access zippers and smooth look altogether.
Frabill Mens I-Float Jacket
This jacket is a United States Coast Guard (USCG) certified personal floatation device that is windproof and waterproof. Made out of 100% nylon, it is hand-washable. The Frabill Mens I-Float Jacket is made out of ripstop material that has a mesh self-drainage system that has openings for emergency water evacuation.
With additional features like high visibility USCG orange lining, garment accents, ice-picks and holsters, and handwarmer pockets designed to allow for easy flex of elbows, this jacket is a whole package. It provides warmth, mobility, breathability, and comfort and also eliminates bulk. The neck and the hood of the jacket also go the extra mile by keeping your ears and face warm. This jacket is surely a must-buy!
Best Floatation Bibs for Ice Fishing
Floatation bibs are the ultimate heavy-duty pairs of overalls that will provide you with the warmth needed in the ice-cold water. What separates them from the standard ice-fishing bibs is that they also help you in floatation, should you end up in the water, and give you enough time to act for your safety.
StrickerICE Men’s Climate Bib
This bib is a high-quality outdoor gear which is the perfect accessory for not only a fisherman but for others as well who are into skiing, hunting, and other such outdoor activities. The Surefloate Floatation Assistance technology has saved a number of lives over the years and continues to do so by providing floatation which keeps an average person afloat for up to 2 full hours.
Furthermore, this bib comes with a hydrapore waterproof technology and a thermadex technology which makes this bib waterproof, windproof, and weather-resistant even in extreme conditions while also giving optimal warmth for hours and hours. This is surely a heavy-duty climate bib with the best features in the market.
Clam 12746 Rise Float Bib
The Rise Float Bib is a simplified version of our popular Ascent Float Bib. It is 100% waterproof and has 100 grams of fixed insulation. With two color combinations, this bib has black and blue zips as well. Equipped with adjustable inseams, this bib is available in almost all possible sizes.
This bib has a Motion Float Technology which makes the bib have security, mobility, and breathability which are important features that are needed to keep you safe when you are on ice. The Rise Float bib is perfect for early and late ice fishermen, or any safety-minded outdoors enthusiasts.
Clam IceArmor Ascent Float Bib
The Clam IceArmor Ascent Float Bib is padded with 1000D ballistic nylon in the knees. It also has nylon suspenders which are adjustable so you can make them according to your own size and need. Moreover, the suit is equipped with a waterproof cell phone pocket so you can be carefree while fishing.
This bib also comes with a floatation assist technology that adds buoyancy and also a 150 grams removable Thinsulate layer which keeps in retaining warmth within the bib. It also has two-way leg zippers with magnetic storm flap for easy on-off, while being breathable, comfortable, and secure on ice.
Striker Ice SI HardWater Bibs
This bib is designed with a 600D Endura, and a waterproof, breathable outer shell. With 2 colors available, Striker Ice premium ice fishing apparel with flotation-assist feature provides the absolute best available technology for the serious fishing enthusiast.
The bib is equipped with a 175g Thermadex insulated lining which is removable so according to the weather and climate conditions outside, you are comfortable, ready, and prepared. Further, the warmth rating on this bib is a 10/10 which means that you are going to be toasty, even in extreme weather conditions. With fast drains that help in evacuating the water inside the suit, it is the perfect bib for fishermen!
StrikerICE Trekker Bib
The StrikerICE Trekker Bib is a trekker bib that is specially made to keep you warm, insulated, and protected while boating, working, or backpacking through harsh terrain. The hydrapore technology makes the bib waterproof and weatherproof while the Thermadex technology helps in providing optimal warmth without all of the extra bulk that comes with other insulating bibs
For added floatation and buoyancy, the Surefloate Floatation Assistance is in place which has saved a number of lives over the years by giving people the safety they need in any situation. For a perfect combination, it is recommended that you pair this bib with the StrikerICE Trekker Jacket.
How to Choose Ice Fishing Floating Suit
A floater suit or jacket and bib is a crucial part of apparel wear while fishing in the ice. While choosing one, you should be extremely aware of the pros and cons and have enough time to make an educated decision. To help with that, here is a list of a few features that are found in a good suit.
The first and foremost thing that the suit must provide is safety. Read the features, instruction manuals, and every document that comes with the suit so that you know the appropriate way to wear and use it. Furthermore, you must also ensure that the suit you buy is of great quality and build.
Although this cannot be tested unless you actually purchase the jackets, there are plenty of YouTube videos, sites, and articles to read that would provide you sufficient information on the floatation power of a suit. Make sure that you go through all this information carefully to make an educated and knowledgeable decision.
Most jackets have vents and zippers to provide breathability while use. Check for these especially when you buy the jacket as it should not make you feel uncomfortable or suffocated. Some jackets that are of great quality have adjustable zippers that let you create your desired opening for the vent. If this is something that sounds like your style, do look for and invest in suits that provide this feature.
Few of these suits are heavy and bulky. It really depends on where you stay and how much your requirement is when it comes to retaining warmth. Overall, just make sure your jacket lets you wear and remove it easily and does not make your movements restricted due to its weight or any other factor.
Warmth is an important factor while ice fishing. It is extremely important to gauge the warmth a suit provides. For this, you can read reviews, articles, and watch videos but the best thing will be if you could try some suits on your own. The amount of warmth required by a person is subjective, hence the best way to know is if you try a suit you like and get the actual touch and feel of it.
There are a few suits which are not waterproof but most of them usually are. Waterproofing is a feature that is necessary when you need to get out of the suit and have it dry quickly. It also comes handy when you need to keep some important items, like your phone, safe while fishing in the ice.
It is extremely necessary that the suit you purchase is durable. This is a long-term investment and often is costly. Hence, having a suit last for a long time, rather than investing in multiple low-quality suits is more feasible and time-saving.
Finally, the suit you end up choosing should make you feel comfortable and in your own skin. It is important that you pick a suit which is comfortable as in the case you fall into the cold water, you should be comfortable and free enough to act quickly to save yourself in time.
If you fish daily, you should mandatorily invest in a floating suit, to ensure your safety. Nobody expects or wants bad things to happen to them, but we can’t predict the future, and staying prepared in such situations is the best way to deal with them.
Due to some unfortunate reason, if you end up in the water without a floatation suit, you only have seconds to act, but if you are wearing a floatation suit, your chances of having enough time and getting out safely are more. Hence, a floatation suit is your best bet under these circumstances.