5 Pieces of Gear you Don't Want to Leave Home Without

By Jared Zissu | Tuesday, February 23

Forgetting gear sucks... Here are 5 items an angler should never forget.

                                                                                                     Photo: Sean Kerrick Sullivan 

Lets be honest, as fishermen and women, we all forget things.. It's just a part of life. If you don’t forget things… then you are a liar, and you probably won’t find any use, or humor in this post. For me, I don’t even know where my 'list of forgotten items' begins... Wading boots, Oars, Gloves, Flies, Rods, Sunglasses, The Dog... You get the picture..

The one good thing about forgetting something, is you usually don’t forget it again. You usually make a mental note to always remember that item, probably because you remember how painful it was without it. If you can create a mental checklist, or even better, a written checklist, you can prevent yourself from making these mistakes over and over again. For un-organized anglers (like me), packing the night before will be the best option. That way you can double check everything in the morning. Here are the items that I have forgotten the most, and tend to be the biggest headache to fish without: 

1. Sunglasses

                                                                Photo: Jared Zissu (Of Geobass Lagend, Thad Robinson) 

Having a good pair of polarized glasses is essential for a productive day on the water. Not only will they help you find the fish, they will also protect you. They will protect your eyes from flying metal, and will also help you see that hidden log. Trust me, you don’t want to trip over that hidden log... It sucks. 

2. Layers, Layers and Layers…

                                                                    Photo: Jako Lucas, Embracing the Mongolian Terrain

For me, you can never have too many layers. By the time you get to the water you can usually make a good assessment of how the weather is going to be for the day. Being cold on the water can ruin a day of fishing. Pack extra layers and bring gloves. Also remember that "Cotton Kills", try and avoid wearing cotton as your base layer when you are trying to stay warm. Having a buff with you can protect your face from the blazing sun and keep your ears warm during a cool breeze. Whether you like the way they look or not, they can be very helpful. These extra layers will also come in handy when you take a spill on the water…

3. Waders!

                                                                          Photo: James Anderson, showing just how cold Yellowstone can get...

Ok, this might seem like an obvious one, but from personal experience, people forget them. Or they forget some part of them.. Make sure your waders are packed, and that you have your boots, and a belt. You don’t want to squeeze into those sneakers that happen to be in the back seat. Your feet will hurt and you will ruin your new nike dunks. Your wading belt will protect you from drowning, and make your waders more comfortable. 

4. The Pack!

                                                                    Photo: Sean Kerrick Sullivan 

The one thing I will always check the night before is my fishing pack. Make sure you have plenty of tippet and some new leaders. Next, make sure your forceps and nippers are ready to go, along with some split-shot and floatant. I've had days where a lack of spllit-shot has prevented me from catching fish. Have your flies organized and ready to go! Bring some flies you might not expect to use. You don’t want to be in the middle of a Sulfer hatch with your thumb up your ass…

5. The Rod. Yes... The Rod!

The last piece of this complicated equation will be your rod. Make sure your line and reel are ready to go. Make sure the rod didn’t snap in the door on your last trip. If you do end up forgetting this crucial piece of equipment, its not the end of the world… Just ask Bryan Eldredge, who used this hot-dog-fork to pull in some impressive fish... Check out his story. 



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