It’s been too cold and weather too rotten for most sensible folks to fish recently, so it is a good time to sit by the fire and reread Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac, or yes, clean and organize a tackle box.
Since my Almanac copy has been misplaced, it’s time for the tackle box,, or yes, tackle boxes.
Over the years, I’ve attempted to reduce tackle and boxes. I used to maintain a Canada box, boat box, small boxes for vehicles, bass box and a general storage and backup box. Now. I’m down to a Florida, an Indiana, a car box, and a general storage box.
So it was with great interest I read my friend T. J. Stalling’s blog about tackle box reduction. T. J. is a 45-year tackle industry veteran. He is a marketing guru and and “Crazy Ideas” guy at TTI-Blakemore Fishing Group (Home of Road Runner Lures and six hook brands including Tru-Turn, Daiichi, XPoint, Team Catfish, Mr. Crappie and StandOUT Hooks).
Most of us carry tackle we never use, so why carry or haul stuff around we don’t use.
It reminded me of years ago when I golfed in a league with an elderly friend George Kerr. George only carried three golf clubs: a putter, driver and a five iron. He hit the ball straight down the middle He could beat the socks off most younger guys.
Back to T’J’’s blog...
“Imagine the clutter of nearly 50-years of fishing in both salt and fresh waters. You would think there are eight tackle boxes in the boat. That is not the case.
“There are two bags, one for freshwater and one for salt. Total weight may be 25-pounds. A few “collections” reside incased in glass shadow boxes. These will never see water again.
“A list follows.
“Shad Assassins by Bass Assassin top the list. These are one of the most versatile baits ever made. I will change it up to Skippy Fish or Bang’s Vapor Shad too. We rig them with Daiichi CopperHead or Buttdragger Hooks. It is often the first bait we cast at sunrise.
“Creature style baits are next. Lizards crawfish, and frogs really work. Naturally, these being “fat” baits, the Daiichi CopperHead hooks are the winner. Bass of all varieties crush them. Culprit, Bass Assassins and more come to mind. Try these in cover or off deep points on a Carolina rig.
“There are times that nothing but a spinnerbait will do. Strike King’s Bleeding Bait series is an obvious favorite. Choose variations of white and or grey first.
“Road Runner heads a plenty. Selections include; original, barbed, pro-series, glow heads and Randy’s Rollin Runners. They all have a situation that fits.
The small plastics are a surprise. Colors include; white, black, pink, monkey milkshake, orange, and five variations of chartreuse. That adds up to about 10-colors. “The variations of each really add up to about 20. While the color spectrum is totally covered, choosing transparent or opaque is often the first decision. Brands include Southern Pro, Mid-South Tubes, Lake Fork Shads, Bobby Garland, and Bang-shads. Many of these plastics pull double-duty as drop-shot baits.
“Several hard-baits reside in the box. Strike King’s Diamond Shad and a few topwater lures.
“The “hook box” is jammed with everything you need for nearly every technique. You cannot catch fish without them, so the selection is broad.
“That is about it for fresh waters. This is proof enough you do not have to fill the boat with tackle. Just choose wisely.”