Ice fishing is, if nothing else, a way to get out of the house during a long winter. In 1962 LIFE magazine photographer Robert W. Kelley traveled to the small Minnesota town of Glenwood—located on the shores of Lake Minnewaska, about halfway between Fargo, N.D. and Minneapolis—to capture people engaged in a classic northern pastime.

Ice fishers drop their lines through holes cut or drilled through a frozen-over lake. They can either sit outside and wait for a bite, or they can hunker in the relative comfort of an ice shack that they have hauled out onto the lake. One of the more distinctive photos in Kelley’s set is an overhead shot from inside a fishing shack in which a family is playing cards around a table and appears to be enjoying a cozy night in a living room—until you notice the rectangular fishing holes cut through the carpet and into the ice beneath.

Perhaps Kelley’s most inventive shot appears to have shot up through the ice as a fish is caught on a spear, with the delighted fishers visible in the background.

Kelley’s pictures also contains what would surely be a candidate for the most “Minnesota” photo ever taken—it shows people playing hockey on a lake with an ice-fishing camp in the background. (The image would be even more Minnesotan if one of the players was revealed to be a young Bob Dylan, which is not entirely implausible: the native of Hibbing is said to have both fished and played hockey in his youth.)

An ice hockey game by a fishing camp is a distraction from a distraction. Fair enough. To get through a long winter you need all the help you can get.

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

An ice shack is hauled onto a lake during ice fishing season in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

A child ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

People playing ice hockey at an ice fishing camp in Glenwood, Minnesota, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

Ice fishing, 1962.

Robert W. Kelley/Life Picture Collection/Shutterstock

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