Ice Holes, Fishing, and Winter Cave/Water Access:
It is now possible to break through the surface ice on the frozen lakes (using an axe), allowing players to fish during the winter months or allowing Players to descend through ice holes, giving new access to water and cave locations throughout the winter. With the axe equipped, look at the ice until a progress wheel displays, then begin chopping. There is a vault mechanic for pulling yourself out from an ice hole while underwater. The game will reduce the rate of refreezing if a hole is being actively used, but it will eventually refreeze regardless. Fishing in the ice hole does not require casting with the rod. Simply approach the hole with an equipped rod (and tackle) and an action prompt will display to start fishing.
*Be careful to carry an axe while exploring caves during winter, as you may need to break through the ice to exit the frozen lake on your return.