It happens to the best of us: we plan the perfect fishing trip with friends, load up our tackle, poles, life jackets, live bait from The Store, change of socks… all the good stuff. And then we get to the lake, and we don’t have… something. Live Canadian Crawlers, Leaf Worms. Pliers. Our lucky sinker for checking depth. It’s never the same thing twice, but it’s always something.
It is better to be over-prepared than to realize you are missing something important as you set out to cast your first line. Wouldn’t it be cool if someone came up with a handy list of fishing supplies to ensure you have what you need when you get to the water? A list like that would likely include:
Primarily, you should always pack for the type of fishing you are planning to do. The rods, reels, and lines should match the type of fish you hope to catch.
- In addition to your primary fishing rod, pack a backup. If anything happens to your primary rod, as you will not be forced to cut your trip short. Likewise, take an extra reel with it as well. Seriously. You don’t want to lose your best equipment and must finish your trip with a Barbie rod & reel, though some people have good luck with that. Fishing net – to scoop up the fish
- Long-nose pliers – for removing fishhooks
- Knives – to clean the fish on the spot
- Ice chest – to keep the fillets cool
- Tape measure – to document your catch
Take several spools of line with you, as you never know how many snags or breaks you might have. It’s never a bad idea to bring two tackleboxes, a large one that can be your backup and a smaller one that you take with you by the water. In the smaller tacklebox you should have extra hooks, sinkers, swivels, and corks. If you use artificial lures, pack your favorites plus extras, but if you use live bait make sure you have plenty to last you the whole fishing trip. If you run out, most locations of The Store sell live bait!
The more you are prepared for your Wisconsin fishing adventure, the more fun you’ll have. So don’t be afraid to take extras of EVERYTHING! You will appreciate it when you need it the most.
- Hat – offers protection from the sun and rain, looks cool
- Extra pair of socks – in case the ones you are wearing get wet
- Extra pairs of shoes – same reason as the socks. You know it’ll
- Waders – if you plan to leave shore and go into the water
- Pants – they offer better protection than shorts, especially from those Wisquitos
- Jack or vest with lots of pockets – this is good kinda everywhere
- Windbreaker – yes, even in the summer. You know how the weather can turn.
- A change of clothes – even if you are heading home after your excursion, it is nice to have dry clothes for the drive
- A towel
- Fishing license – make sure you have the right one for the place you plan to go
- Waterproof bag – for your cell phone and wallet
- Map – especially if you are unfamiliar with the area, also food for marking down your favorite fishing holes
- First aid kit – for unexpected cuts and scrapes
- I-gogs Sunglasses
- Insect repellent (for horse sized Wisquitos)
- A good knife and multi-tool – the one you wear on your belt to open bottles or slice summer sausage
- Toilet paper – depending on where you go and the facilities that are nearby
- Camera – to capture your prize, catch of course! Why just a camera? You don’t want your phone geotagging your secret fishing cove!
- Some snacks and drinks (or rather, lots of snacks and drinks!)
Snacks and Drinks
Most importantly, make sure you stop at The Store to stock up on all your favorite snacks and drinks! Grab your favorite sweets, but also something salty. A hot cup of coffee for the AM, bottled water and soda for the PM.
- Trolli Sour Brite Crawlers
- Swedish Fish
- David’s Cookies
- Old Trapper Beef Jerky
- Bigs Ranch Sunflower Seeds
- Cheddar Bugles
- Planters trail mix
- Hot grilled chicken and swiss sandwich
- Hard boiled eggs
- Oh Snap! – Dilly Bites, Pretty Peas, Carrot Cuties, Cool Beans, Hottie Bites, Sassy Bites
- The Store hot Coffee
- Fiji Water
- Simply Lemonade/Simply Raspberry Lemonade
- Coconut water
Obviously if you took all this stuff, you won’t have any room for all the fish you catch! But half the fun of fishing is forging your own way and finding out exactly what works for you. The other half is getting the inside scoop on other people’s secrets – their lucky cove, that one hidden lake that nobody else knows about, and the best sale on snacks. So, spill: what’s YOUR favorite fishing snack when you’re out catching nothing but a sunburn at your best Wisconsin fishing hole?