However, all that fun and excitement that ice fishing brings comes to a screeching halt if you don’t have the right equipment. One such vital piece of equipment is a good ice fishing reel.
A faulty reel not only will cost you some fish, but it will definitely take the joy out of ice fishing.
In this post, we will present some of the best reels for ice fishing. In fact, we will present our top 7 best ice fishing reels. So let’s get to it.
What is the best ice fishing reel?
Here is a quick preview of what we think to be the top 7 reels for ice fishing:
- 13 Fishing Black Betty Freefall
- Eagle Claw In Line Ice Reel
- TICA SS500 Cetus Trout Fishing Series
- Celsius Blizzard Spinning Reel
- H.T. Enterprises Accucast Spinning Reel
- 13 Fishing Teardrop Inline Ice Reel
- Fiblink® InlineReel
For a more in-depth look at each reel as well as great videos, please continue reading….
13 Fishing Black Betty Freefall
Does the 13 Fishing Black Betty Freefall have what it takes to be considered the best ice fishing reel?
We think it just might and after reading about all the great features this reel has to offer, we think you will feel the same.
It is made of a durable aluminum body with a smooth cork drag system. It has a gear ratio of 2.5:1.
The best feature is the free fall trigger system. Once you pull the trigger the spool goes into a free spin mode. Located right behind the reel is the tension spool which will allow you to adjust how fast the bait falls. Once you let go of the trigger the reel is engaged and you can begin your retrieval.
This unique feature really sets it apart from the competition and helps to get your lure at the desired depth very quickly.
Learn more about the 13 Fishing Black Betty Freefall in the following video:
Eagle Claw In Line
One of the best inline ice fishing reels on the market is the Eagle Claw In Line Ice Reel. This reel is has a nylon body and an aluminum spool, making it very durable to withstand cold fishing conditions. One feature that really makes this reel stand out from the rest is the free spool release button.
With a push of a button and the reel goes into a free spin, completely removing the drag. This feature is great for ice fishing. It allows you to easily drop a very light lure down the fishing hole without the dreaded line twist.
This reel has a 2.6:1 gear ratio meaning it will bring in about 15.75 inches of line per crank. This reel comes set up for a left-handed retrieval, but can very easily be switched to a right-handed.
Learn how to switch from left-hand inline reel to a right-hand inline reel in the video found here.
Watch the video below to learn more about the Eagle Claw InLine:
Enjoy reading: Can I use my baitcasting reel for ice fishing?
TICA SS500 Cetus
Many would say that the TICA SS500 Cetus Trout Fishing Series is the best ice fishing reel and I would have a hard time disagreeing with them. Weighing in at 6.3 ounces this reel may appear to be tiny, but don’t let that fool you. It is a very rugged, well-balanced and yet super smooth reel.
Equipped with 6 precision ball bearings gives it a nice silky smooth drag as well as 1 mini roller bearing giving it that instant anti-reverse feature. It also has a nice gear ratio of 5.2:1.
The best part is this reel isn’t limited to catching small fish, but you can catch larger fish with is such as walleye and trout.
Warm gloves are essential when out on the ice, but gloves can very cumbersome while trying to hold onto a small fishing rod and reel. The Celsius Blizzard Spinning Reel was designed with ice fishermen in mind. As you can see from the above photo this reel has an elongated yoke.
This feature makes it much easier to hold onto while still keeping your hands toasty warm.
Made from a very durable aluminum this reel was built to last under the harshest fishing conditions. It also contains anti-free lubrication meaning you will no longer need to worry about your reel seizing up while on the water.
This reel also contains an infinite anti-reverse feature as well as 4 ball bearings, giving it a very smooth drag.
H.T. Enterprises Accucast
Another great spinning ice fishing reel is the H.T. Enterprises Accucast Spinning Reel. Like the Celsius Blizzard it also has a longer yoke so you can still fish with you gloves on. The body is made from a very strong graphite.
It is equipped with 6 ball bearings giving it that much desired liquid smooth drag as well as an infinite anti-reverse feature. Standard comes with a left-handed retrieve, but can easily be switched.
13 Fishing Teardrop Inline
While a few of the aforementioned fishing reels can be used outside of ice fishing, this next one was made strictly for ice fishing. It is the 13 Fishing Teardrop Inline Ice Reel . This is a hybrid of a baitcaster and a spinning reel. One feature that I really like about this reel is the design.
As you can see from the photo and as the name implies it has a teardrop shape. This teardrop shape gives it a very narrow profile. On top of that, it is extremely lightweight, making it very easy to hold. Couple that with the 8 ball bearings and 2 high spin spool bearings and you have yourself a sick super-smooth carbon drag system.
It also has a 6.2:1 gear ratio meaning you can fish it not only in deep water but shallow water as well. If you prefer a right-handed retrieval you can find it here.
Learn more about the 13 Fishing Teardrop Inline Ice Reel in the following video:
Another great inline ice reel is the Fiblink® Inline Reel.
This reel is ultra lightweight. It only weighs 5.8 ounces making it extremely easy and comfortable to handle while on the ice. It has a good gear ratio of 2.6:1. It is equipped with 4 +1 Ball bearing making the drag silky smooth.
The line capacity for this reel is 4/45, 2/110 and 1/270.
If you haven’t fished with an inline fishing reel before, this is a great one to start fishing with.
PFLUEGER Monarch Ice
A reel that was designed to withstand the toughest ice fishing conditions is the Pflueger Monarch Ice.
This reel is a made with a carbon frame and a graphite reel making it super lightweight. It has a good amount of gear ratio. The 5 ball bearing set up ensures you will have a smooth retrieval every time.
The high spin free spool feature is designed to make it easy to drop the smallest of ice fishing lures. It is also equipped with an instant anti-reverse feature.
It is available in both left handed as well as right-handed models.
So…What is the best reel for ice fishing?
Much of it depends on your needs and preferences. As far as choosing a reliable fishing reel, you can’t go wrong with any of the aforementioned reels. However, with that being said, I really like the 13 Fishing Black Betty.
Share with us your favorite ice fishing reel in the comments below.
(If you enjoyed reading this article, you may also enjoy reading: What is the best ice fishing line? )
Check out the following links all about our favorite sport, ice fishing: