GEARING UP FOR SPRING FISHING
BY RANDY LAUKSHTEIN
Spring is here, and it’s time to get your fishing gear back into good shape. First off, dig out your rod and reels. Check the rods closely for cracks and chips. Look at the wrapping that holds the eyes to the rod to be sure it is still in good shape. If not, call your local tackle shop to see if they do repairs. If it is good, then check the eyes themselves. See if the ceramic on the eyes are still there, and ensure that they are in good shape. If the eyes don’t look good, then it would be best to have them replaced.

Do a thorough inspection of your fishing reels. First, remove any old line still on the reel from last season. It is always best to start the season with new line. If you know how, this is a great time to take your reel apart for a good cleaning and greasing. If you do not know how, call your local tackle shop. They can tell you after inspection and cleaning if the reel is in good shape or if it’s best to get a new reel.

Now the fun begins with sorting out your tackle box. Remove all the tackle from the tackle box, and clean your tackle box thoroughly. Sort through all your tackle, and throw away any tackle that is rusted or in poor condition. This may be a good time to also remove any tackle that did not perform as you had hoped, and therefore now just takes up room in your tackle box. Check all of your good tackle and sort it into different sections for ease of finding when you place it back into your tackle box.

Boat engines should be checked every year by a professional technician. Do not roll the dice on this; your safety depends on it. Checking steering cables and hydraulics, gas lines, and electrical, are all very important things that should be checked on a regular basis. Check the hull of the boat carefully for cracks, and check all fittings that come through the hull for leaks. Finally, this is a great time to grease or even change the bearings on the axels of your trailer. Check the tires and the electrical wires for your lights, and do not forget to check your license plate and registration for your boat.

Now you are ready to go fishing, but there is one more thing to do. Go to your local tackle shop and see all the new things they have for your boat and tackle box. This is a good time to ask questions on what, where, and how things are on the water. Get yourself updated on the new fishing and watercraft regulations and laws so that your day on the water is nothing but pure enjoyment.

Safety first! Do not forget that you need to have life vests for every passenger, and it is always a good idea to carry flares, whistles, and a first aid kit.

Have a great spring season of fishing!