Wednesday, October 6, 2010

8 Things I Wouldn't Go Fishing Without

We all know the basic equipment required to fish.You wouldn't think of going without a rod , reel , hooks and bait. Today I'm going to share a short list of other things that I use at some point during most of my fishing trips.

1. Rain gear. I've discussed this here on the blog before , but it's worth mentioning again. If the forecast isn't calling for rain I'll still take a rain jacket , just in case.

2. A good knife. I can't stress how important this is. You'll use it to cut line , to cut bait , maybe even to clean a few fish. I carry a pocket knife that I use for cutting line and bait and I keep a fillet knife for cleaning fish in my tackle box.

3. Needle nose pliers. I like the ones with a side cutter. The side cutter is the best way to cut heavy mono used for leaders. The pliers themselves are perfect for removing hooks from fish.

4. Extra line. A big fish can be hard on your line. They can also take all of your line. I've been " spooled " a couple of times over the years and I always keep at least one extra spool of line in my tackle box.

5. Knife/hook sharpener. A handy tool to have with you on any fishing trip. The small pocket sized sharpeners are perfect for sharpening dull hooks or touching up your bait cutting knife.

6. Rod tips and glue. While I try to take care of my rods , it's still possible to break the tip off. A friend gave me a small box of rod tips of assorted sizes and it has saved more than one fishing trip. I carry a small tube of Super Glue and I can usually make a temporary repair to salvage the rest of the days fishing.

7. A hand towel. A good thing to have around to wipe bait , fish scales and other gunk off of your hands and gear. It's also a good thing to have around should a seagull or some other unfortunate bird get tangled in your line. You can put the towel over their head and they will calm down and sit still almost immediately , allowing you to untangle them.

8. A tape measure. Useful for ensuring the legality of your catch and also for taking measurements of species that are catch and release only. You can use the formula
(( Girth x Girth) x Length) / 800 to estimate the weight of a fish. There are also several species specific formulas out there , should you ever need them.

It's also a good idea to take a few minutes to go over the rules and regulations for the place you will be fishing. I fish in several states and have trouble keeping up with the changes from year to year , but it's a good practice to get into no matter where you fish.

Have a great day!

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