When you’re out on a skiff your boat bag is your magicians’ kit, your source of angling sustenance, your lifeline when things go awry on deck
For a while you can get by with all kinds of stuff hanging from a lanyard around your neck, pockets bulging with a couple boxes that hold a limited selection of flies. But unless you’re dialed in to the area you’re fishing – and like really dialed in – you’re going to need more. Here’s the breakdown of what goes in my bag.
First off, you’re wearing polarized sunglasses, right? Great. Do not fish without them. Stow an extra pair in your bag. That way when you drop your original pair into the ocean, or a hinge breaks, or a nosepad comes loose, you’ve got a backup.
Next up: pliers. These can be hardware-store needle-nose jobs, or fancy aircraft aluminum deals. Either way, they need to have side-cutters for cutting heavy mono and wire.
Throw an extra cap in your bag. Caps are even easier to lose than sunglasses; just a bit of wind or boat speed can deep-six the one you’re wearing. A backup is easy to pack and invaluable if you do lose yours. I’ve fished with guides who’ve lost their caps to the wind. Capless, their fish-spotting abilities suffered greatly.
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