Seeing their fishing gear can tell you a lot about a fisherman

I have an old saying that I started using when I lived and fished with a Swede and dear old friend named Håkan: You can always tell a fisherman, but you can’t tell him much. As anglers, we are quite set in our ways and often stubborn when it comes to our favorite techniques. Where we fish, who we fish with, and the gear we use can say a lot about the kind of person we are. Anglers are a special breed when it comes to their favorite fishing tackle, but truth be told, if we thought tying up the car keys and throwing them in for a cast would catch fish, we would. .

It becomes noticeable once you take a closer look at their gear, and you can really tell a lot about what they’re up to and how much fun they’re having on the water. What kind of stuff are you going to pick up? Here are 15.

1. Love a good fishing tackle sale

Whether it’s the volume of lures or the number of rod and reel combos, which one of us doesn’t like to see a big tackle explode? New hardware isn’t always cheap, but if you’re the type to keep your eyes peeled for a bargain, it becomes pretty obvious. Filling your basket to fill your collection isn’t a bad thing, but once you run out of places to put it all, you’ll have to face the music.

2. Think they’re a BASS Pro

Two fishermen fishing from a bass boat.

Getty Images: Neighborhood Victor

We all want a bass boat. In fact, we all want a fully equipped bass boat with all possible options. This isn’t always a realistic option, especially given the rising cost of fishing boats, but if you notice someone has their boat decorated with all the bells and whistles, you may have a pretty good idea of ​​his intentions. They want to make fishing part of their job, which as we all know is incredibly hard to do. Only the most dedicated and disciplined will reach the top, but there are plenty of people who will dream of it every night of their lives.

3. Never seen a rod they didn’t like

fisherman's fishing tackle

Craig Raleigh

From G. Loomis and Ugly Sticks models to Daiwa and Zebco models, an extensive rod collection says a lot about an angler. They want to remain versatile and have an option for almost every possible situation. Different lengths, actions, and power levels correspond to different scenarios, and if they don’t have something for everything, they feel like there are holes in their selection. The more the merrier, as they say.

4. They are very serious about fishing

Fisherman inside a fishing float holding a fresh catch

Craig Raleigh

This angler thinks long and hard about the gear he buys, buys nothing without a lot of thought, and uses every piece of gear he has. He owns a float tube, a skiff, a fishing kayak and a boat at least 16 feet long and uses one every weekend. It’s an extreme level of dedication that isn’t always achieved, but once you understand their approach, it’s clear that they REALLY mean it.

5. Pier and beach fishing is life

They are a special breed of anglers, and maxing them out means they go for a specialized type of gear. They can be seen on shore or on the pier every other day with an extra long saltwater rod and reel the size of your head, with at least 300 yards of heavy test line spooled over it.

6. They are a lord of the flies

A fly fisherman fishing in the Arkansas River in Colorado.

Getty Images: skibreck

When you walk into the house and see a fly tying vise before seeing family photos, you can be sure they have dedicated themselves to fly fishing in a way few others have. Once you’ve come this far, it’s hard to go back. Conventional fishing just isn’t their cup of tea, and they prefer to challenge themselves (or torment themselves?) by fishing only with a fly rod and a fly, trying to match the hatch to every opportunity.

7. Trout streams matter to them

Within the fly fishing community there is a group that is only interested in small streams that contain native trout and are just as excited about a little 4 inch brookie as they are about others would do it for a 160 pound marlin. The incredible array of fly rod and reel combos this person has is nothing compared to the array of fly lines, tippets and leaders hanging on the wall, all meant to cater to the clear water type of fishing. and cold they like.

8. For them, it’s all about largemouth bass

Largemouth bass hitting a soft plastic lure


Sure, they’re the most popular species of game fish in North America, but sometimes you can just tell that a big mouth is their primary target. When an angler has several tackle bags dedicated strictly to spinnerbaits, racks loaded with baitcasting rods in the mid-heavy to heavy seven-foot range, and at least one bigmouth lunker on the wall, then it’s a is a true bigmouth fisherman.

9. He’s a trophy hunter

I remember not too long ago I walked into a friend’s house (knowing what type of fishing he prefers) and saw two big muskies on the wall, at least 10 different combinations of fully equipped muskellunge rods on his pool table and the latest muskellunge video he made with his GoPro. This stuff can give you an idea of ​​the level of trophy fishing that some anglers live for. It’s the size and the fight that matters to these anglers.

10. They are a Catfish Catcher

Ictalurus furcatus at the Tennessee Aquarium.

Thomsonmg2000CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

There aren’t many fishing enthusiasts as passionate about their enemy as someone who lives to target whisker lips. One look at the collection of S-glass, composite and carbon fiber rods, as well as the amazing range of circle hooks and sinkers, will tell you that hardcore catfishing is their jam.

11. They fished on the ice once or twice.

The ice fisherman sits on the frozen lake


Ice fishing gear is very different from any other type. When the inside of his ice shack is nicer than his house and his ice auger hangs proudly next to the weedkiller in the garage, you can say it’s all about hard water fishing. There will also be a fair amount of cold weather gear like jackets, bibs and boots to make sure they stay comfortable in the subzero weather. Yes, that’s a high level of dedication, and they’ve proven it’s worth it.

12. They are a metal head

Fishing sinkers in plastic containersFishing sinkers are an integral part of any angler’s repertoire, but a bucket full of lead, steel, and tungsten weights will indicate that this angler tackles bottom feeders, or at least enjoys sinking their lure. deep in the water column quickly and efficiently. . There can be serious benefits to working your tenders this way, but again, you’ll never get the visible pleasure of a bass squashing a surface bait or a trout sipping a dry fly from the surface. Well, that’s not what they want to do anyway.

13. Has his own YouTube channel

Fishing in Costa Rica

Travis Smola

Many of us have a YouTube channel for entertainment and recreation, but for the hard-core fisherman who owns 10 different waterproof video camera systems, chances are he’s made a fishing video or 100 Online videos have become a huge source of information and inspiration, and many weekend anglers have managed to earn money and serious followings through their creation of useful and entertaining content. Maybe they sometimes feel like they’re talking to themselves, but there’s a meaning behind it.

14. They’re a Pond Hopper

Pond and cattails in the summer in Kenilworth Park and Water Gardens during the Lotus and Water Lily Festival

krblokhin/Getty Images

It’s the angler who has a fanny pack, an ultralight rod and a 12-piece lure set. They aren’t used to catching giants, but they seek out the elusive wild fish that hide in small, seemingly empty ponds. And when they manage to hang on to a big one, it’s like Christmas morning.

15. They are a great water fisherman

The new Penn Fathom reel on an Ally II reel.

Adrian Gray

Much like ice fishing, a great salt fisherman is going to have a certain type of gear, rare for any other technique. It can be any angler who has a plethora of combinations of freshwater and saltwater rods and reels, electric winches, telescopic landing net, multiple electronic fish charts, GPS systems and a big boat to do it all.

Please check out my book”The path of the hunter” from HarperCollins. Be sure to follow my Web pageOr on Facebook and Youtube.


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