From late November to mid-February, ice shantys (aka fish houses, ice huts, darkhouses, and ice fishing houses) dot the lakes across many northern states from Montana to Maine and Minnesota to Illinois. In many of these states, ice angling and spearing is a seasonal part of life. Our goal at Ice Shanty Gear is to enhance your ice fishing experiences with our quality gear.
Ice Shanty Gear originated in 2005 when owner, Jeff Doty, started the "Doty's Darkhouse Dipper Project." Undertaken to fill a need, several additional innovative products have emerged from this project and most are still being sold today.
A revolutionary product, Doty's Darkhouse Dipper solves a problem experienced by practically all darkhouse spearing enthusiasts. It enables darkhouse spearers to easily and effectively skim the open water of their spearing hole, clearing away the ice chips, slush and snow that gather when initially creating the hole.
Purposefully designed with travel and easy-of-use in mind, Doty's Darkhouse Dipper has years of satisfied customers and has remained unchanged for over a decade. Ice Shanty Gear is the only company in the industry manufacturing this type of product.
Another Jeff Doty creation, The Laser Spear features his own unique design and is a great tool for the avid spear fisherman. Getting its name from being laser cut, the 7-tine Laser Spear is hand sharpened and 100% engineered for harvesting fish – Northern Pike, White Fish, and more.
This product solves your decoy storage problems. With multiple, individual decoy holding straps, you can easily organize your decoys by size and color. The added benefit with this decoy storage solution is that it effectively protects your investments while traveling to and from your fish house. The space-saving roll design makes the Decoy Roll-Up easy to carry.
Jeff, a seasoned spearing fisherman, produces a series of hand sharpened and engraved spearheads known as the Collector's Spear. Whether for yourself or as a gift for someone else, our Handcrafted Collector's Spear is the perfect addition to any ice fishing enthusiast's collection.
*The first design is already sold out; contact us if you're a collector.
Using a decoy to lure fish into your spear hole is a method that's second to none. The most realistic looking decoys can mean the difference between a great catch and going home with nothing. At Ice Shanty Gear we produce a range of decoys, all of which are hand carved and hand painted.
Our decoys are available in a variety of sizes, shapes and colors. At the beginning of the ice angling season we carry 30 of each individual decoy. Once we are sold out of any particular item it's gone... so make sure to order sooner than later. With limited supply, the decoys we create are more than just fishing tools; they are collector's items.
At Ice Shanty Gear our decoys are most often made from raw white pine, which Jeff Doty (owner) procures from Paskewitz Millwork in Browerville, MN. Jeff cuts the wood into blanks himself.
DMS Machine Inc. in Little Falls shapes rectangular wood blanks into our decoy designs. They also drill the holes for the wire loops and cut a slot for the lead.
The "Swim Test"
All of our decoys are "swim tested" in a water tank between the priming and painting phase. Using a jiggle stick, each decoy is pulled through the water to simulate actual fishing. During the swim test we can determine if the decoy is fast and jerky, or too slow. At Ice Shanty Gear we aim for the middle ground, therefore we make slight adjustments to each decoy before they are hand-painted.
Great for attracting fish when spearing, the mini teaser turns attractor spoons in the water to create flash and vibrations bringing Notherns and White Fish right where you need them.
Quickly being able to remove chunks of ice from your spearing hole makes a great start to any spear house setup. At Ice Shanty Gear we carry a long handled set of ice tongs that feature a tight closed distance that will pick up a block of ice zero to 28 inches thick.
Our tongs allow you to use the bouncy of the water to remove ice from your hole. These tongs were designed by spear fishermen for spear fishermen.