Fish On

Must-have equipment for the angler in all of us.

May 16, 2011

In the Bag
The new Hydro-Flo 4848 bag ($160) from Plano’s FTO Elite series can organize all the fishing gear you need for a day on the water, thanks to four removable utility boxes, four dual-speed zip pockets and an expandable back pocket. The bag features an impact-resistant base with a nonskid bottom to keep it in place in a rough sea and to prevent damage to decks. Plano, 800-226-9868;

Mount Up
The new RH6650 rod holder ($165) from Burnewiin is great for the occasional angler. Built tough with injection-molded, glass-reinforced nylon, the RH6650 can handle heavy offshore rod/reel combinations. The adjustable holder allows the rod to sit at a 45- or 22.5-degree horizontal angle, and it fits into Burnewiin universal mounts (prices range from $40 to $150) for hassle-free mounting. Burnewiin, 541-386-1929;

On the Hook
Daiwa has three new lures in its salt lure line: the Salt Minnow (shown), Chugger Minnow (both $7.95) and Salt Pro Minnow ($9.95). All lures are designed with 3-D eyes, realistic scale patterns and heavy-duty saltwater hooks. The Salt Minnow and Salt Pro Minnow are both floating jerk baits that sink to three feet beneath the surface and, during a fast retrieve, produce a side-to-side swimming motion that attracts predators. The Chugger Minnow features a lip design that works just below the surface, causing the lure to splash and dive like a baitfish escaping predators. Daiwa, 562-375-6800;


Package Deal
The Penn GT rod/reel combo ($130) from Penn Reels features the Level Wind reel, which has a machined and anodized aluminum spool, lightweight graphite frame, high-strength marine-grade main gear and stainless-steel level wind and reel stand. The reel’s HT-100 drag washers allow for smooth drag when you’ve got a monster on the line, and the oversize paddle knob on the counterbalanced handle means you won’t lose your grip in the heat of the battle. Fitted to the Slammer trolling rod, the combo is a good fit for yachtsmen who enjoy fishing but won’t necessarily be making an appearance on the tournament circuit. Penn, 800-892-5444;

In a Pinch
The Berkley Classics 7-inch aluminum pliers ($50) have corrosion-resistant stainless-steel jaw inserts, an anodized aluminum body designed for prolonged exposure to salt water and replaceable cartridge cutters to ensure a clean cut on any gauge fishing line and are spring loaded for easy one-hand use. The pliers come with a tether and sheath to keep them close at hand while battling the day’s catch. Berkley Fishing, 803-754-7000;

Voice of Authority


John Brownlee, editor-in-chief of Salt Water Sportsman, committee chairman for outreach for the Billfish Foundation and a passionate angler, knows what it takes to find and raise fish. We caught up with him for some tips on what you need.

Look Deep: “The number one thing you need is a high-quality sounder with a good transducer that is capable of discriminating between individual fish.”

Strap In: “If you don’t have a chair, and you intend to catch fish of any size whatsoever on stand-up gear, you must have a fighting belt. If you intend to catch big fish, you need a harness to go with the belt. You can catch virtually anything that swims with a belt and harness.”


The Little Things: “Fluorocarbon leader material is expensive but highly invisible in water, and much better than regular nylon monofilament in terms of leader materials. You need polarized sunglasses. A wide-brimmed hat with the underside of the bill being dark lowers reflection. Binoculars to see birds feeding, a set of gloves, pliers, swivels, crimps, crimpers, filet knives, gaffs, hooks, swivels — all the basics.”


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