Tricking Ice Perch

Drop-shotting through the ice can be extremely productive, though few anglers do it. Getting ice perch to rise up forces them to make a decision to eat or not to eat. More times than not, perch that are willing to rise are willing to eat.


Drop-shotting involves setting a weight at the end of the line, with a hook and bait set some distance above, which keeps your bait

a set distance from bottom -- basically suspending your bait near bottom where perch tend to roam. The weight allows full control of the working depth and also allows for bouncing the bait on bottom -- a classic trick for attracting and getting perch active.


In most states during the ice season, two to four lines or lures are legal. Consider rigging a double drop-shot rig, positioning one bait about 6 inches from bottom and one anywhere from 2 to 3 feet. Active fish more likely will rise up and take the bait, but the bait close to bottom allows for presenting a bait to perch not willing to rise off bottom.

Use a palomar knot to position the bait on the main line. When tying the palomar, insert the tag end of the line through the eye from the hook point side, and form the loop on the bend side. When you tighten the knot, the hook sticks straight out, positioning the bait correctly. The length of the tag end of line determines the distance from bait to weight. Adding 2- to 3-inch dropper lines allows you to position your bait away from your main line. Simply create a loop (overhand knot) in the main line where you want to position the bait; then tie a uni-knot to the loop before tightening the loop knot.


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