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Marty McCafferty at Causey Reservoir

Everything to make Ice Fishing FUN!

- posted by Chris Jacobson

OK, so last month we talked about 5 Things to do while waiting for the ice to freeze.

Well, it's January and Mantua is FROZEN! Utah's ice fishing season has arrived. Strawberry Reservoir and Birch Creek are frozen too, and Causey and Pineview. All right!

So I've made a checklist of everything you need to go ice fishing in comfort. And if you're getting ready to go ice fishing for the very first time, scroll down to the bottom of this post for a printable ice fishing gear checklist just for you!

Checklist for Ice Fishing in Comfort

If you're ready to invest in a Clam tent to really enjoy fishing, here are the items you want to make sure to have on your trip this weekend.

Staying Warm in Comfort

It's all fun and games til you get wet and freeze! Have fun by staying warm & dry:

Carhartt Face Mask

Carhartt has lots of great beanies and ways to keep your head warm, including this Pull-Down Face Mask (click the picture)

Clam Ice Fishing Shelter at Smith and Edwards

This Clam Vista shelter will fit up to 3 people.

  • Good-quality coat, snow pants, boots: There's a good bit of advice for a lot of winter activities: dress in layers. If you've got a tent, which I'll talk about in a bit, all you need is a good-quality coat and pair of boots to get you out on the ice and get the tent set up - then you can hang out in a hoodie. If you don't have a tent, a good pair of snow pants can really keep out the cold.
    If you already have a good Carhartt coat or Carhartt bibs, put a little waterproofing on them and they'll work nicely. Our Western guy Marty recommends Duck's Back waterproofing for dusters and canvas clothing. Or, look for nice waterproof snow bibs & a jacket.
  • ICE Trekkers: One of the best brands of treads out there, choose from Chains or Diamond Grip. These treads slide right on to your boots and will let you walk on ice just like pavement.
  • Ice Shelter & Sled: Yeah, you can go Ice Fishing without a tent - definitely! But if you want to enjoy ice fishing (or your kids & wife!) - get a Clam ice tent. They start right around $200.00 and you can even upgrade to one that would hold all your buddies from work or your whole family.
    And to haul all your gear, get a nice Ice Sled. I like Otter sleds, and you can even hook up your ATV or snowmobile. Some ranches use these to haul newborn calves. Upgrade from just your bucket: fit all your gear and a folding chair, and make life easy for yourself!
  • Gloves, Hand warmers, Beanie or Hat: Heat rises - keep that heat in with a good hat, beanie, or face mask. A ball cap works for some guys, and others need all the fleece and lining they can get.
    Plus, a good pair of gloves goes a long way. If you get waterproof gloves you won't have to rotate pairs. One trick I learned from a skiing buddy is to wear a pair of knit glove liners, put in a handwarmer pad, and then wear good gloves on top of that.
  • Snacks: Make sure and pack in jerky, Twizzlers, candy, and drinks!
Marty McCafferty at Causey Reservoir

Man could we all be as lucky as Marty with this 20" Tiger Trout at Causey Reservoir! Nice!

Ice Fishing Tackle for the Experienced Angler

OK, now that you're set up on the ice, let's start catching some fish!

Strikemaster Power Auger

Ice Auger with a Motor on top... nice.

Tip Up Tip Down Ice Fishing Rod Holder

This ice rod holder, "Tip Up Tip Down", lets your rod jig up and down with just a push.

    • Power auger: Lots of guys start out with a hand auger because 1, they work well enough, and 2, they start at $59.99. Your Power Auger is for us guys who want to get out there and fish without the workout first - taking 15 minutes of drilling through 6" of ice! I've got Strikemaster power augers starting at 499.99 and you'll love yours to pieces. And remember to have a set of replacement blades with you. Check out ice fishing augers online here.
    • Jigs: If you've been out before, you've got a feel for what you like. A lot of my customers love the Ratsos and Ratfinkees. I've had good luck with them too.
      Metro Tungsten Jigs are a new lure out there for ice fishing and they're a lower price than other options. And they're just as good. Give them a try and let me know how they work for you!
    • Rod: Shorter than your summer fishing rod, get a good ice fishing rod and reel. I've got combos as well. If you're serious about ice fishing, you might have 2 or more poles going at a time! If you've got good rods, make sure and protect them in a Rod Case.
    • Ice Skimmer to clear the ice.
    • Ice Fishing Line to take the colder temperatures. I carry clear, clear blue, smoke and green ice fishing line: Fireline, Trilene, Stren - and you can even get it shipped to you. Monofilament as well as braid line for you to choose from.
    • Terminal Tackle: Can't catch a fish without a hook. Plus I've got sinkers, swivels, and everything you need for the end of the line.
    • Rod holder: Yeah, here's how you fish without needing 5 hands. Set it up and let it go! With cool inventions like the Hook Setter and the Tip Up, you can keep jigging with just a poke - some models set the hook for you!
    • Use a Spring Bobber to keep the ice off the top of the rod and detect bites.
    • Bait: Most people like to use wax worms or night crawlers as live bait. Those wax worms are sure tricky for us to keep in stock - too warm and they'll turn into moths, too cold and they won't make it! I'm trying my hardest to keep new wax worms coming in from our supplier so you've got the live bait you need. I've also got spikes and mealworms for you.
      If you don't need your bait to wiggle on its own, I've got Powerbait, Trout Dough, Waxies, and Lunker Lotion for you. It's also on the website if you want it shipped.

Bait and attractants

  • Fish finder: Just like summer fishing, see those puppies under the ice. Ice fishing fish finders are more temperature-resistant.

Budget or First-Time Ice Fishing Gear Checklist

Chris's Ice Fishing Essentials Kit

Enter your email address and I will send you a free PDF checklist you can print out so you remember all the gear to take with you to the reservoir! Nothing worse than pulling up to the shore and remembering your jigs and lures are back on the kitchen table.... been there, done that!

Get your Ice Fishing Gear Checklist!


Ice Fishing Checklist Download

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Did I miss anything? Do you have questions on ice fishing? Leave a comment and let me know, and have fun fishing!

Smith and Edwards Mens Jeans Guide

The Truth about Fit: Men's Jeans Guide

- posted by Rose Marion

It's time for a new pair of jeans and, chances are, you're frustrated. Men's jeans can be confusing! Not only do you have to know your inseam (how tall the pants are) and your waist measurement for each company, but you also have to figure out if you prefer "Relaxed Fit" or "Tapered Leg."

Good luck trying to read the faded tag on the pants you bought 5 years ago. They are so comfortable and you really don't want to replace them, but it's time.

Guess what? There are 3 specs you can memorize that will solve all this angst. Keep reading to find out what they are.

Jean fit is not only about comfort. It's also about making different body types look good. This men's jeans guide will help you dress yourself in the best jeans for your build, and get you familiar with the jeans makers' terms for different types of jeans.

Take a look at how the different brands and styles compare to one another.

Quick Comparison

Wrangler Men's Jeans

Style No. Natural Rise Mid-Rise Low Rise Tapered Leg Straight Leg Bootcut Leg Slim Fit Regular Fit Relaxed Fit Loose Fit
0935 X X X
0936 X X X
0945 X X X
0947 X X X
31000 X X X
35001 X X X
35002 X X X
39902 X X X
01MAC X X X
01MWX X X X
13MGS X X X
13MWZ X X X
23MWX X X X
31MGS X X X
31MWZ X X X
33MWX X X X
36MCV X X X
36MWZ X X X
3W001 X X X
3W020 X X X
3W030 X X X
3W060 X X X
42MWX X X X
47MAC X X X
47MCV X X X
47MWZ X X X
WLT88 X X X

Cinch Men's Jeans

Style No. Natural Rise Mid-Rise Low Rise Tapered Leg Straight Leg Bootcut Leg Slim Fit Regular Fit Relaxed Fit Loose Fit
Black Label X X     X
Blue Label X X       X
Bronze Label X X   X  
Green Label X X     X  
Silver Label X   X   X  
White Label X   X   X

Ariat Men's Jeans

Style No. Natural Rise Mid-Rise Low Rise Tapered Leg Straight Leg Bootcut Leg Slim Fit Regular Fit Relaxed Fit Loose Fit
M2   X     X   X
M3   X   X     X
M4   X     X   X
M5   X   X X    

What You Need to Know

To get the best fit, you want to know more than your waistband and inseam. You already probably know how your favorite pair of pants fits. Knowing 3 more specs will help you get the perfect fit next time a knee blows out or the heels get worn out: Rise, Leg Opening, and Fit.

A lot of people don't know the difference between rises, leg opening, and fit - and most people don't know for sure which works best for them. These are 3 areas you can really tailor your look.

Rise is all about how far the jeans come up your waist. Leg opening answers the question of how tight the jeans are at your ankle. And Fit, that's how baggy or tight the jeans are. Scroll through these examples to discover which one suits you best.

Men's Jeans Rise

Men's Jean Rises

Natural rise jeans sit right at the waist. Cinch's Green Label is a great example if you like your pants to come all the way up to the waist. They will also help short legs appear longer.

Cinch Men's Green Label natural rise jeans - MB9053

Midrise jeans sit just below the waist, so they're not too tall but not too low. Ariat makes the M5 low straight jeans that are a great mid rise jean. These Wrangler Retro Relaxed Jeans are another great mid rise jean for men. Any build looks great in this rise.

Wrangler Retro Relaxed Mid Rise Jeans - WRT20

Low rise jeans are even lower than midrise. Make sure and wear a belt! Ariat's M3 Athletic is a great low rise jean we carry, and so is this M4 Low Rise.

Ariat M4 Low Rise Jeans - 10007775

While it's completely up to you, generally lowrise jeans aren't a good choice for working outside all day and bending over a lot. Low rise jeans are nice, though, for riding your horse - they won't dig into your belly as much as a mid or natural rise would.

If you have a long torso, you may want to try low rise jeans first. And the opposite is true - if you have longer legs, a natural rise may fit you better.

Men's Jeans Leg Opening Guide

Men's Jean Leg Openings

There are 3 big types of leg openings in jeans common among the big jeans manufacturers. This is another piece of information you want to look out for when replacing your favorite jeans.

Tapered jeans narrow toward the hem of your jeans, so they will come closer to your boots. Wrangler Cowboy Cut jeans 13MWZ are a great tapered jean.

Regular Fit Wrangler Original Cowboy Cut Jeans - 13MWZ

Straight cut jeans are just your basic leg opening with no flare or taper at all. Cinch's White Label jean is a nice straight leg. You'll find lots of jeans that are straight cut.

Cinch White Label Stright Leg Jeans - MB9283

Lastly, Boot Cut jeans are wider at the hem of the jean, flaring out slightly. Wrangler Vintage Boot jeans are a good choice if you like a little more fabric around your boots. These Cinch Carter Bootcut jeans are another great example.

Cinch Carter Bootcut Jeans - MB96134

Tapered jeans may help you keep looking more proportionate if you have really skinny legs, whereas if you have large legs a straight leg or boot cut will look much better. Bootcut jeans are going to be the first ones to start to lose the heel, because they hang so low on the boot. They may be a little too wide to stack and might sag instead, depending on your height.

Men's Jeans Fit

Men's Jean Fit

Fit is the third dimension of jean cut. It's asking how close you want the jeans to be cut to your legs: slim, almost skinny jeans; regular; relaxed; or loose and baggy.

Depending on who makes the jeans you're looking at, you may see a few different terms on the jean fit spectrum. So let's take a look, from tightest to loosest fitting jeans.

Slim Fit Jeans: Fitted seat, thigh, and knee, like Ariat M5's or Wrangler's Premium Performance Slim Fit 36MWZ:

Slim Fit Men's Wranglers - 36MWZ

Regular Fit Jeans: Regular-fitted seat, thigh, and knee, like Wrangler Premium Performance Cowboy Cut jeans 47MWZ or Cinch Silver Label:

Wrangler Men's Premium Performance Cowboy Cut Jeans - 47MWZ

Relaxed Fit Jeans: Relaxed seat, thigh, and knee, like Wrangler 20X jeans 23MWX and Ariat M4

Wrangler 20X Relaxed Fit Jeans - 23MWX
Also check out the Cinch Black Label 2.0.
Cinch Black Label 2.0 Style MB90633006

Loose Fit Jeans: The baggiest fit, with an extra-relaxed seat, thigh, and knee, like these Wrangler 33MWZ or the Cinch Blue Label Carpenter Jeans.

Wrangler 20X Extreme Relaxed Fit Jeans - 33MWX

Slimmer cut jeans can also help give you a little height if you're on the short side while more relaxed jeans may be much more comfortable. They're perfect to work in, especially if you're getting on and off the horse or stepping in and out of your truck frequently. Most work jeans are relaxed fit for easy movement.

It's all up to you - but we can help

So what, is it all clear now, or clear as mud? Here are 3 pointers for keeping your new jeans the way you like them - and keep reading for the best tip of all.

First, find what you're comfortable in. If you've got a favorite pair of jeans, wear it in to the clothes store and find ones that come closest to matching.

Treat them right: If you want your jeans to keep a true fit, wash them on cold and hang them up to dry. They'll even last longer that way. If you want your jeans to shrink, make sure and wash your them in hot water, and dry them on hot too.

Here's the third pointer: take them in to the dry cleaner's and get them starched: you can keep your jeans going for twice as long by keeping them starched and out of the dryer. Plus they look nicer with that nice crease from the starch.

And the best tip?

Come on in! We've got a fantastic crew of ladies here at Smith & Edwards who really care about helping gentlemen like you look their best in their Wranglers. You'll get all the individual attention you need to get your look right.

Smith and Edwards' Ladies of Wrangler can help you get the best fitting jeans!We've got tons of experience. We'll help you find the exact rise, fit, and leg opening that will help you look the way you like, in jeans that will hold up for a long time - and stay comfortable.

Plus, each of us would be happy to help you pick out the perfect outfit, so you can be sure to have shirts that are matched to your jeans, plus a vest, belt, or boots. Come on in and see what we can do for you today in Smith & Edwards' Clothing department!