Iditarod Mushers Vs. Hardcore Ice Anglers: Who'™s Tougher?

In honor of the endless winter of 2013-'14 and the hearty souls who venture forth for recreation in the harsh conditions, we set out to see who was tougher, Iditarod sled dog racers or world-class, diehard ice fishing fanatics.


Both are cut from the same salty cloth. They don't merely endure below-zero temps and bitter wind chills, they revel in the fierce challenges of the northern winter. Mushers race nearly 1,000 miles across the Alaskan wilderness from Anchorage to Nome. World-class ice anglers sally forth on frozen lakes and rivers across the North. Both endure Arctic blasts, sub-zero temps, bitter windchills, and must battle through deep snow and slush to reach their destinations. Whether you call it grit or blame it on a seasonal lack of sunlight, there's no denying that both camps embrace winter's wrath while more delicate souls hunker by the hearth.


To gauge which group has more gristle, we considered the following 10 criteria. We list the winner of each point at the end of each item, and the overall champion at the conclusion of our final challenge. So snuggle up somewhere warm with your laptop, tablet, or mobile device, and read on see whether stoic mushers or diehard anglers deserve the title of toughest winter sports enthusiast.

Be sure to tune in to The Sportsman Channel to watch the Iditarod Unleashed beginning March 25th at 7PM ET. View Schedule!


Anyone interested in a dog sled ice fishing adventure? In-Fisherman staffers have done it--Check it out!

White Wilderness

Basswood Bob

Murphy's Border Country Adventures

White Wilderness

Ely Dog Sleding

Get Your Fish On.

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