W A L L E Y E   H U N T E R
Fishing Articles by Sam Anderson
Mak'n a List and Check'n it Twice
By Sam Anderson
As I pack up all the items in my Ranger 620 this year I am making a list about things that I will need for the open water fishing this spring and summer. In making this list I have come to realization that everyone should be making a list and checking it twice.
Christmas is coming and every sportsperson should look over their equipment to see what others can purchase for you for Christmas or at least enumerate some things that can be sent to the Jolly Old Man at the North Pole.
As long as we are discussing poles I believe that one of the most important items on your pole is your line. Line is an inexpensive gift that can be given to you by a child, especially if a parent is guiding his/her purchase. Remember to find out what type of fishing your sportsperson does. For example, if I am jigging, I prefer to use a monofilament line that gives me some stretch. The reason for this is that I am directly over the fish when jigging and I want the line to give a little when I make the hookset. This allows me to get the fish to the surface quickly and by adding stretch to the formula the fish can run and yet not get off because there is no slack in the line. Many fish are lost at the boat, so you want a line that gives you some leeway at the boat and will help the fish to stay hooked. The line that I use is not expensive line; it is simply new Berkley Sensation line, in 6 lb. or 8 lb.test. I do want my line to be abrasion resistant especially while jigging in and around rocks. I also want it limp so I can cast it a long way. Berkley has made this possible by using a new technique called a Complex Polymer Alloy, this makes it stronger, and super sensitive. Jigs cast easier, crankbaits go deeper and spinner baits run truer.
If you want more than just line as a gift try a Lindy No-Snagg Carolina Rig packet. This new and improved method of fishing is dynamite for those finicky walleyes. The Lindy No-Snagg Carolina Rig slip sinker also adds a new dimension to your fishing harness. I will put a Lindy No-Snagg on my line and then attach a short leader of lighter line, maybe 6 or 8 lb. test Berkley XL or Sensation line. The Lindy No-Snagg acts as a brush detector and keeps my jig out of the snags. If you do snag bottom, give the line some slack, and then give a sharp tight line yank which will pull it free. Or if you feel a tug on the line, set the hook on a fish. The method is easy, just simply drop your rod next to a log and wait until your Lindy No-Snagg touches a limb or brush. If by chance it touches nothing allow it to drop all the way to the bottom, walleyes like to hang on the edge of the timber also.
Yet another inexpensive gift for the sportsperson is a set or collection of Thill Floats. Unlike the more familiar and traditional bobber that snaps in place and is held stationary on the line, the Thill Float has a hollowed out tip for ease of line attachment. The stopper is a rubber snubber, rubber band, pretied knot, or a spring device that is placed on the line at the desired depth. The stopper can be reeled onto the spool and does not interfere with casting or retrieving. A split shot a foot above a small hook completes the outfit. Changing depths is a simple matter of sliding the float stop up or down the desired distance. Probably the most effective and useful slip bobber that I use is the Thill Float. These floats are pencil designed, but for use in shallow, windy conditions, or over the top of a gravel bar. You can't beat them for performance.
I like to attach a 1/16 or 1/32 ounce Timb'r Rock jig to the end of the line instead of a plain hook. The Timb'r Rock jig allows you to present live bait or plastic in all kinds of cover without fear of snags. Due to its unique "weight centered" design, it lands upright every time. The patented seven strand wire guard protects the hook point from hang-ups.
I like the color that a jig head adds, plus I need to add a little extra weight to pull the line down to the preset depth when using a jig head. If you use this slip bobber method, it will enable you to jig your bait vertically without positioning yourself over the top of the structure. With little or no wind you'll have action on the bobber. This can easily be achieved by sweeping the rod about a foot at a time. It might seem simple, and it is, but the results will astound you.
I would highly recommend some Cabela's clothing for the sportsperson. Cabela's has some of the best quality products and you can shop from the comfort of your living room rather than making a mad dash to the mall and fighting crowds. I personally like the Windstopper sweaters, and the Dry-Plus Thinsulate parka and bibs for deer hunting. Or the Gore-Tex Insulated pants for kneeling in the snow to capture a snapshot of the red fox as he hunts for his supper. Maybe even a pair of Cabela's hipboots or waders might be on the list for both you and your spouse.
These come in handy in the spring when wading the streams for trout and smallmouth bass. Don't overlook some great stocking stuffers like Lindy jigs, bottom bouncers, or a worm blower for your tackle box. Normark lures either Storm or Rapala are always great gifts and I think this year you can even find them packaged with a coffee cup. Berkley Power Grubs, and worms are also a good stocking stuffer and the tournament strength Power Baits are especially cherished not only on Christmas day, but on the opener as well.
If you want to give your sportsperson a gift that will make fishing easier and safer I would like to recommend a Drift Control Sea Anchor. A Drift Control Sea Anchor is a cone-shaped under water windsock, similar to those at airports that detect changes in wind direction. Drift Control Sea Anchors aid boat control in two ways. First of all, they slow your drift in strong winds. Secondly, you can use them to fine-tune subtle boat maneuvers in rough seas or heavy current.
Also, if you want to control your rods from becoming a tangled mess Drift Control offers the Rod Control Rod Sock made from rip stop nylon, these rod socks help to protect, better organize, and keep any different style of rod from getting tangled with each other. The Velcro straps on the base of the rod sock ensures that sock will stay on your rod, even during long runs across the water. They are available for two piece rods and all the way up to 8.5 feet in length.
If you want a special gift that the entire family can enjoy I would highly recommend the Polaris ATV Sportsman Twin 700. These are awesome machines and the reason that I prefer them is they have the all new 683 cc 4-valve, 4-stroke ATV engine. They have on-demand true 4WD with on/off switch - the power of true 4WD is all at your fingertips. Plus they have a 1500 lb. towing capacity and 150 lb. tongue capacity to provide a 20% higher payload over the competition.
Needless to say, don't over look the sportsperson in your life. Whether
they hunt with a camera, bow, gun, or fishing pole there are many
products that can keep the sportsman happy and enjoying the great
outdoors. Drop me a line at www.samanderson.com and Merry Christmas to
all of you.
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Since August 1, 1998