Essential Fishing Gear You Need for Every Trip

Do you enjoy spending time out on the water in peace and quiet, waiting for the next fish to bite? Do you spend your days thinking about your next fishing trip? Are you overwhelmed trying to decide what to bring on a fishing trip?

Whether you’re an old pro or this is your first fishing adventure, you want to make sure you have the right gear. And that you have it all with you! Once you’re out on the water, it’s not easy to go back for anything.

Here is a checklist of all the essential fishing gear you need on your next fishing trip.

Essential Fishing Gear for Everyone

If this is your first fishing trip, review this guide carefully for everything you need to make it a successful one. If you're more experienced with fishing, this is a good list to ensure you have enough inventory of everything and that it’s all in working order. 

Fishing License and Insurance

Much like hunting regulations, having a fishing license is absolutely necessary almost everywhere in the world. If you don’t have one, you could get a fine or have your equipment confiscated.

Buying a license is quick and easy in most places. You may even be able to do it online for most areas. Double-check the guidelines for the area you’re planning to be in, and make sure you have all the necessary paperwork filled out ahead of time.

Rods, Reels, and Lines

Probably the most essential gear for a beginner fisher to have with them is their rod and reel. There are a wide variety of different styles to choose from, depending on what you want to fish.

A high-quality rod can carry a lot of weight. They tend to be better suited for the bigger fish you find while deep-sea fishing. If you’re going to spend your time in rivers and lakes, a medium rod is likely right for you.

There are two types of reels – open face and baitcasting ones. Beginners should consider using the open-faced reels at the start. More experienced anglers may appreciate the nuances a baitcasting reel offers.

When it comes to fishing lines, it gets a little overwhelming. There are literally hundreds to choose from! Some of the basic styles include braided, Fluorocarbon, or monofilament lines.

Braided lines are thin and strong. Monofilament lines stretch easily and are very lightweight.

When starting, you may want to consider a fluorocarbon line. They are strong enough to withstand any sharp rocks or debris in the water and are almost invisible to most fish.  

It may take some time to find the right rod and reel for you. Once you find them, though, take care of them properly, and they will last you for many years!

Floats, Weights, And Hooks 

There are three different types of tackle to consider: floats, weights, and hooks. They’re essential gear to bring along, but you don’t need to go overboard in how much you bring.

You can cast farther with the proper weights on your lines. They also help keep the bait underwater. Stick with basic split shot weights if you’re a beginner – they’re inexpensive and easy to use.

Look for long-lasting hooks that are sharp and durable. Many people prefer hooks that are not snelled – that don’t have a leader already tied to them.

The floats, or bobbers, keep your bait from sinking to the bottom. They usually float on top of the water, but if they start bobbing up and down in the water, that’s a good indication you have a fish on the other end!

Live Bait

The best way to lure most fish is with live bait. Nightcrawlers are the most universal live bait, especially in freshwater fishing. Almost any freshwater fish will eat it.

If live bait isn’t your thing, you can also use lures. There are many styles and colors of lures, so you’re sure to find the right one for the fish you’re going after.

Fishing Net

Make sure you include a fishing net on your trip. Beginners and experts alike all agree that it’s difficult to get a firm grasp on a flopping fish while standing in a rocking boat!

A net makes it much easier to scoop the fish out of the water. Once it tires itself out, you can handle it better. Then you can decide if you want to keep it or throw it back.

First-Aid Kit 

Most fishing trips will be quiet and peaceful. But hooks are sharp, and accidents happen. Ensure you have a well-packed first aid kit on the boat and that it’s in easy reach.

Most injuries are going to be small cuts, so make sure your kit can take care of those. Keep it packed with cleaning wipes, gauze, band-aids, eyewash, and antibiotic cream.

Fishing Apparel

It may seem surprising to discuss clothing on a list of fishing essentials. But when you’re sitting out on the water all day in direct sunlight, you want to keep your skin protected.

Look for a fishing shirt that provides UV protection. Wear a hat to protect your head and sunglasses to reduce the glare of the water.

The weather can change when you’re out on the water, so be sure to bring along a windbreaker. It will provide warmth when the wind picks up and also keep you dry if it starts to rain a little. 

Have Fun With the Proper Gear

Preparing for your next fishing trip doesn’t have to be a chore. Keeping an essential fishing gear checklist handy will have you easily check that you have everything you need. While it’s never a guarantee that you’ll catch a fish, these items will make sure you’re prepared for anything!

Contact us for more fishing tips and advice.   

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