Ice-fishing can be a relaxing way to spend your weekends. However, you can’t get much of anything done without the right equipment. One of the essential tools you need is a high-quality fishing auger to help you drill through the surface of the ice. Although there is a wide variety of choices available in the market, you want to find an ice auger that won’t let you down when you need it the most.
What Should You Consider Before Buying an Ice Auger?
Before you set out on your journey to looking for the best Ice auger, you should consider a few things. Narrowing down your search will help you find what you need.
Manual vs. Power
There are two main types of augers available today – manual and power ice augers. Manual augers (or hand augers) require brute force to pierce through the ice. On the other hand, power augers use electricity or gas to power the auger. Today, power augers are much more common than manual ones. However, electric augers are more environmentally acceptable than their gas-powered counterparts.
Weight and Portability
Another essential factor you need to consider before settling on an auger is weight and portability. Although power augers are generally convenient to use, they have their limitations. Electric-powered augers typically need a power source in proximity – to charge the battery. On the contrary, manual ice augers are lighter, more portable, and ideal for extended fishing trips.
When it comes to the size of the hole, there are several factors you need to consider. If you decide to settle for a power auger, choosing a larger size can be pretty beneficial. 10-inches is the most common size you will find in most brand names. For manual augers, things are not as straightforward. The larger the hole you are drilling, the more effort you exert.
- Speed: the sharpness of the blade and power of the motor are the main determinants
- Noise Level: Hand-powered and electric augers are generally much quieter than gas-powered ones.
- Warranty: an extended warranty means that the manufacture is confident enough with their product
What Are the Best Ice Augers?
With the wide variety of choices, picking the best ice auger can be daunting. This is why we have compiled a list of some of the best manual and power ice augers available in the market today.
1. Eskimo Hand Auger With Dual Flat Blades – Best Manual Ice Auger
Many anglers trust Eskimo because they have over 60 years of experience in making ice augers. One of their most trusted models is this hand auger with dual flat blades. Unlike other screw-together hand augers, this auger uses a cross-bolt takedown system that prevents tightening during the drilling process. Plus, it has a protective blade cover to extend the sharpness and life of the blades.
However, you need to be aware that drilling on thick ice requires quite a substantial amount of strength. The Eskimo Hand Auger offers the best value to money ratio.
2. ION Electric Ice Auger Series – Best Electric Ice Auger
If you want to reserve your strength and start ice fishing ASAP, you should consider picking up the ION electric auger.
This electric ice auger can help you drill up to 20 holes in 24″ of ice in one charge. Don’t worry, though. Despite its power and efficiency to pierce through the ice, this power auger offers the perfect balance of weight and performance. As a matter of fact, it only weighs only 22 pounds, so carrying it around and drilling won’t be a hustle for you.
If you are concerned about noise, you will be happy to know that the ION auger is one of the quietest electric ice augers in the market.
3. Eskimo Propane Auger Series – Best Propane Ice Auger
The Eskimo HC40 maximizes the benefits of high-octane and high-compression propane fuel. It features a unique quantum auger mechanism that maximizes its efficiency of drilling, thanks to the centering ring. The HC40 holds a one-pound propane cylinder that is easy to connect and disconnect for quick and easy replacement. It is fitted with precision, stainless-steel blades designed to last longer and hold their edge in dirty ice.
However, the HC40 is loud and might scare away some fish. You will also need to set aside a budget for propane.
4. K-DRILL Auger – Best Ice Auger for Drills
The K-Drill is one of the most popular auger systems for modern high-powered electric drills. It attaches to all-electric drills with a ½-Inch drill chuck and can drill through 36-inches of ice without extensions. It also comes with a protective blade cover to protect it from the elements, keeping the blades sharper for an extended period. However, you will need an electric drill for ice augers.
5. Eskimo Quantum Auger Series – Best Gas Ice Auger
Unlike most other augers available in the market, the Quantum auger is perfect for re-drilling holes thanks to its unique centering ring. The centering point also helps keep the auger stable, whether you are re-drilling old holes or drilling on uneven ice. Plus, all Eskimo power augers come with a 5-year warranty.
6. StrikeMaster MD-8 Ice Fishing Mora Hand Auger, 8-Inch
The StrikeMaster Mora is yet another reputable brand name that is affordable and very efficient. The hand-powered auger has 8-inch blades that are constructed from high-alloy carbon steel. The Mora also features adjustable handles and soft rubber grips, making the ice drilling process more bearable for your arms and hands. The Mora requires considerable energy to get through significantly thicker ice like any other hand-powered drill.
7. Nordic Legend E-Drill Unit
The Nordic Legend unit is engineered to transfer power to the cutting head from your drill efficiently. The super-tough build allows it to withstand extreme temperatures while still maintaining its upright position to let you complete your drilling work swiftly. Plus, it is easy to carry around.
8. StrikeMaster Lithium 40v 8″ Ice Auge
Last but not least, we have the StrikeMaster Lithium Ice auger, which is arguably one of the best electric augers you will find in the market. It features an integrated internal battery management system that will ensure that you get the job done before the battery runs out. The manufacturer also includes a 2-year limited warranty on the battery and charger. The StrikeMaster is a definite contender for the best battery ice auger position. On the flip side, the StrikeMaster Lithium is one of the most expensive augers on this list.
Choosing the right ice auger depends wholly on the buyer. That means that the buyer’s requirements will determine the best auger for the job. However, the augers on this list offer a well-balanced solution depending on the nature of the job at hand.