Getting ready for the season

Over the years, tackle boxes have changed slowly with the advance of new tackle design.
It seems new tackle comes out for a couple of years before the tackle box manufacturers look at finding a place to put all the new and old designs in one box.
For example, how long did it take tackle boxes to reflect that large musky baits should be stored vertically rather than horizontally? How long did it take them to figure out that plastic worms and grubs, when put in a box, have tendency to melt and run together?
I am happy to say most of the tackle box companies do reflect the needs of the anglers today. Tackle boxes come in all sizes and shapes for a variety of needs, and provide function with stylish design.
Plano and Flambeau products have come up with box designs that you can add more boxes to and take away others.
When I am fishing for crappies, I want to take maybe two boxes of jigs but I surely don’t want to take along all my crankbaits, especially my musky ones. I simply slide out my box that has all the crankbaits and put in my boxes that have all the crappie jigs.
These smaller, clear finished boxes make the identification of their contents easy and quick when you have to select in a hurry. They also make sense in the aspect that you don’t have to have that old box like your dad’s.
You know the one I am talking about. It weighed about 50 pounds and when you opened it, it grew in size and different levels so it took up the entire length of the floor between the seats.
All the tackle dad and you had purchased over the years was contained in that box. Some of the tackle was in need of repair but it still had a place in the box next to all the other tackle that was housed there.
When getting ready for this fishing season, be sure to spend some time going through your tackle box (and maybe it is a good time to get a new one).
Check all the compartments and remove all the lures and set them aside so you can wipe out the box itself and let it dry. Don’t use chemicals or industrial cleansers–a damp rag will clean up most of the plastic boxes that have been out there for more than 20 years.
Then inspect your baits and lures. Do they need to have new hooks put on them? How sharp are those hooks? Now is the time to touch them up with a file and get them sharp for the upcoming season.
You might be surprised to discover an old candy bar that you put in there last August before you went on a trip and discover it looks like someone sat on it and your favourite crankbait now has a sweet smell of dark chocolate.
This is the time to discard those items you know you will not need or use. A good friend of mine always said, “In order to be successful on the water, you have to spend some time in the garage.”
That is very true, and it not only pertains to your tackle box put also your vehicle.
One item I use extensively that makes my life easier is the aluminum boxes put out by Dee Zee, constructed of heavy-duty Mill Finish Aluminum that is welded for superior strength and performance.
The Mill Finish Storage Boxes are included in a line of heavy-duty truck accessories all under the label of Diamond Brite.
Dee Zee has incorporated a new molded channel, which is formed directly from the box panels. These panels are welded together, forming a solid, single piece design for years of trouble-free service.
Around their new channel is a one-piece Neoprene bulb seal, which keeps the elements out and the contents of the boxes dry. Locking stainless steel T-latches are used to ensure the safety and security of your contents.
Inside one these boxes, I carry spare line and reels. I might get to the lake and discover I forgot to change reels for the conditions I am fishing so I can just step to my truck and select a reel or line.
Inside another box I will carry all my unused crankbait, jigs, live bait, and plastics that I don’t have in my current boxes in the boat. I might also in another box carry my rope, duct tape, pliers, tools, etc.
The boxes are arranged in the toppered bed of my truck so that when I go fishing, I have all these things at my fingertips.
Organization and knowledge of where items are–either in your tackle boxes, boat, or vehicle–will improve your success this year. As I prepare for the season, I think of what it is like to prepare my taxes and how organized I have to be.
The only trouble is I know where my fishing equipment is but I have misplaced the receipt to those crankbaits I bought last August with that candy bar.

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