If you're planning on trying your hand at ice fishing this winter, probably best to brush up on the dos and don'ts before heading out.
The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department’s "Let’s Go Fishing Program," in partnership with other groups, is offering several free ice fishing class. They are open to anyone, though those under 16 are encouraged to be accompanied by an adult. Those planning on going are asked to call ahead to reserve spaces.
If you can't make it to a class, New Hampshire Fish and Game has a "Safety on Ice" document that includes several tips for those planning on venturing out. The tips include suggestions about appropriate clothing and several somewhat obvious warnings about not starting fires or bringing large vehicles into the ice.
It also includes information about what to do if you or someone else falls through the ice.
Here's a list of classes:
Lebanon Recreation Department – Three-part course on Tuesdays, January 15 and 22, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.; and Saturday, January 26, from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Visit https://webtrac.lebcity.com, or call (603) 448-5121 sign up or for more information.
Greenland Recreation Department – One-day workshop on Sunday, January 20, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Visit http://www.greenlandrec.com to sign up and to get more information.
Riley Brothers Lumber, Milford – Three-part Saturday course on January 26 and February 2, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.; and February 9, from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Contact Dale Riley, at daytime (Tuesday through Friday) 603-673-2987 or evenings at 603-673-4036.
Haverhill Recreation Department – Three-part course on Wednesdays, January 30 and February 6, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.; and Saturday, February 9, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Call 603-787-6096 for more information.
Laconia Recreation Department – One-day workshop on Saturday, February 2, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Call 603-524-5046 to sign up or for more information.
Amoskeag Fishways, Manchester – Two-part class on Friday, February 15, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.; and Saturday, February 16, from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Contact the Amoskeag Fishways at 603-626-3474 for more information.
All classes include a hands-on indoor session where students learn about ice fishing equipment, safety practices and winter ecology of lakes and ponds. The classes also include a field trip to apply some of the safety skills learned.
The "Let's Go Fishing" program is federally funded through the Sport Fish Restoration Program.