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my part of the world tournament season has just wound down, and the
onset of winter is just around the corner, which leaves only one
question, what’s a fisherman to do?
The answer is simple, start preparing for the next year.
Wintertime presents an excellent opportunity to inspect tackle, take inventories of soft plastics, terminal tackle and other high use items.
is a large category, so we’ll break it down like this:
Topwater, crankbaits, jerkbaits.
time offers the opportunity to make sure when you start next spring;
your baits are competition ready. So
start like this: How are the hooks?
More than likely they need replaced, or sharpened.
My personal selection for crankbaits is a Gamakatsu EWG round
about the split rings? If
you keep the split ring on the line tie of a lure, does it have any
corrosion? Rough spots?
Remember, the only thing bringing that fish to your boat is the
line attached to your lure. Anything
that can jeopardize that connection must be fixed immediately. The
second split ring to check is the split ring attaching the hooks to the
bait. Have they experienced
excessive stress? Are they
showing signs of corrosion? Are
they slightly gapped or bent? These
are all signs identifying a split ring that needs to be replaced.
The purchase of new split rings and a pair of split ring pliers
will make this task a lot easier. These
items are available through most tackle supply companies.
any of your hooks started to rust in the box?
Has this rust got onto any of the baits?
This is an excellent time to clean these baits.
Any industrial cleaner will work; even a “cleaning” type car
wax will remove most if not all of the rust.
step an angler can take is to make an inventory of your rods, write down
how many of each type of rod you have, and what their best suited to be
used for. Once you made this
list, think about the tournaments you plan to fish next year and compare
your equipment list to the potential conditions and type of fishing you
most likely will be doing to see if you are adequately equipped.
If you are properly equipped, great, if not, you now have time to
save up and purchase any new rods you may need before season starts.
last item about hooks, try your best to settle into as few of types of
hooks as possible. If a
Gamakatsu 4/0 EWG hook works well when you throw a 10” worm, does the
3/0 work well in a baby brush hog? Will
a Gamakatsu 4/0 EWG superline hook work for most of your flipping needs?
The less number of types of hooks you can get to will streamline
your tackle storage, it will allow you to buy in bulk, and will prevent
“grabbing the wrong hook” situations.
are another story, but a very similar situation.
It is not hard to have weights in many sizes and still store them
in a small tackle organizer. The
biggest concern again is if you like tungsten weights, then you need to
buy an inventory of tungsten weights in the weights you use most (this
will prevent trying to dig out the last tungsten weight out of your
weight box, when its mixed into your lead weights.
I personally prefer Penetrater weights (www.penetraterweights.com)
but not least, rattles, weight pegging materials, swivels, clevises,
blades, skirts and beads should all be looked at and inventoried.
Some of these items are used more frequently than others so
limited quantities may work in your situation.
There are many avenues for getting these materials, most on-line
or catalog tackle retailers offer the above products.
Buy quantities as you predict you will need.
of whether you’re a tournament fisherman, or a pleasure fisherman,
inventorying and organizing your tackle during the winter months will
allow you to be prepared to go fishing at the first sign of spring
weather. Don’t waste
valuable fishing time next spring, by not being ready before winter is
Luck and Good Fishing,