Tackle, gear storage tips and suggestions

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, December 7, 2016

One of my last columns was about having too much fishing “stuff.” That may or may not be the case for you, but no matter the amount of “stuff” you have, storage and organization of your “stuff” matters. 

Lures can get tangled if not stored in an organized way. (Photo by Rob McComas)

Lures can get tangled if not stored in an organized way. (Photo by Rob McComas)

Fishing gear, especially tackle, has a way of intertwining itself together. Thankfully, today’s market offers several options for storing and managing your gear.

Let’s start small. If you have a very limited assortment, lets say a few hooks, floats, a handful of lures and a stringer, the trusty ole tackle box will be the right match for you.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Though tackle boxes come in a variety of sizes, a small to medium box is good for the occasional angler. The fold out trays offer individual slots for lures, hooks and the like, while the bigger, open bottom offers room for a spare line spool, stringers, jars of Power Bait, etc. They are easy to carry, store, and you know all you have to do is grab the box and you’ve got all your essentials. Be sure to keep your tackle box dry though; once moisture gets in, it will rust all your hooks, which can be expensive.

When you have accumulated enough gear that you need a very large tackle box, or even multiple boxes, you might want to consider buying the clear organizer boxes like the Plano boxes. These clear boxes come in a variety of sizes, and some fit in a tackle system, which is basically a tackle box that the smaller clear boxes slide in.

These clear individual boxes have several benefits. First, they are clear so you can see what is in the box without opening it. They can be easily taken out and replaced with another box of different tackle for different kinds of fishing/times of year, etc. They can be taken by themselves if space is an issue. And you can write on the ends of the box with a Sharpie what the box contains, such as shallow crankbaits, suspending jerkbaits, etc. so you know what box to pull. It’s also not a huge mess if your tackle box gets turned over.

And, if you just have a ton of gear, a tackle bag is a great way to go. You can stuff the bags with the clear tackle organizers, rain gear, extra reels, etc. I like to use quart and gallon size Ziploc bags for my soft plastics. I write on a gallon bag with a Sharpie what the general category is, such as lizards, flukes, trick worms, etc., and then put all of that type of lure in that bag. They are fairly moisture resistant (not waterproof as you might think), and are cheaply replaced when they wear out. 

You can fill your bag with about everything you will need for a day, except rods, and go. It is an easy way to change types of gear easily, or to take with you if you are fishing with someone else.

A little prep time makes a day on the water go much better.