Fishing Gear photo

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Tackle bags and boxes are on my mind this morning. I started sorting out my bass-fishing bag over the weekend, with an eye to replacing or adding whatever I think I’ll need next season. Given our oddly snowless winter here in the Vermont mountains, spring doesn’t seem all that far away.

Over many years, I’ve tried boxes and bags of every description. But I’ve been most happy with a Cabela’s Tackle Bag that holds six Plano 3600 boxes on end. As you can see in the photo, I label the end of each box with a fat Sharpie as to contents, which makes for an easy grab when I’m fishing.

There’s a “top” box for various topwaters, a “jerk” box for jerkbaits, and so on. Most important is the “rigging” box that holds various hooks, sinkers, swivels, bobbers, and sundry tools and devices that I use to construct on the water, whatever rig suits what I’m doing at the time (we’ll get into that rigging box sometime in another blog post).

As a youngster, I lusted after those big boxes with accordion-like fold-out trays to display countless baits in easy view. In eventual reality, though, I found folding and unfolding the box to be more trouble than it was worth.

The same goes for hard-sided boxes with drawers that open horizontally. A great idea in theory, but not so great in practice–partly because of high overall weight and limited capacity. I tried several different ones over the years and finally gave up.

Having ultimately settled on soft-sided tackle bags, I started getting bigger and bigger ones on the “more is better” theory. Wrong again. Turned out I’d need a team of assistants to carry one of those giant things, most of the contents of which would never see that light of day (or water) anyway.

So I’ve settled on the moderately sized bag in the photo. Enough is enough. The matter of a box or bag being able to hold all the world’s tackle turned out to be no longer important. What’s most important–at least for this old guy–is being easy to use.

But I’m always open to suggestion. Got any better ideas?