New Fishing Gear for 2011

February 22, 2011 by  

by Bob Jensen

While there’s still lots of ice-fishing to do, open water fishing is getting closer every day. I’ve enjoyed the ice-fishing season, but am also looking forward to putting a boat in the water. When the time arrives that we’re casting a lure instead of dropping it through a hole in the ice, I’ve got some new stuff that I’m looking forward to using. Some of this stuff is new to the fishing world, some of it is just new to me. Following is some of the stuff I’m looking forward to trying in the 2011 open water fishing season.

New Fishing Gear

Some new fishing gear for 2011 are here!

Mapping systems that you put in your depth-finder aren’t new, but they are kind of new to me. I’ve been experimenting with them on a limited basis over the past few years, but this year I plan to really figure this thing out. It has become so apparent to me that these map chips will not only help you catch more fish, they’ll make your boating safer.

The maps from LakeMaster are what I’ve been seeing the most of. They are very accurate, and quite easy to use. You’ll need a sonar that has split screen capability. You can see where your boat is on a structure by watching the map side of the screen, and you can see if there are fish underneath your boat by looking at the sonar side of the screen. Really interesting stuff!

A new bait that I’m looking forward to using is Northland’s Fish-Fry Minnow Trap. This is a blade bait that has the Live-Forage appearance. The bait looks just like a minnow, and the line attachment goes in the dorsal fin. It can be cast or vertically jigged and comes in three sizes. It looks very life-like, and although it may have been designed for ice-fishing, I’m betting it will be an outstanding bait for a wide variety of fish in open water.

A brand new line of baits comes from Berkley. The fish catching abilities of their Gulp! and PowerBaits is well known. They’re introducing a new line of soft baits called HAVOC. There are four different styles of baits that were designed primarily for largemouth bass, but the bait-style called The Deuce is going to catch a wide variety of fish. The Deuce is kind of like a twin-tail Power Grub. It will work great on a plain jig, or as a trailer on a rubber-legged jig or spinnerbait.

Last item: Anglers everywhere know that Cabela’s GuideWear is great outer wear for many situations. It is an important part of my outdoor clothing. I wear GuideWear in the boat, on the ice, and to football games. It looks and feels great, and does an outstanding job of keeping the elements at bay. Somehow the folks who design the clothing at Cabela’s have found a couple of ways to improve GuideWear. They changed the zippers to make them engage easier, and they’ve also added a gusset to the bibs to do an even better job of keeping rain out. If you have never experienced GuideWear, now would be a great time to do so.

There are other items I’m looking forward to trying in the open water, but I’ve still got a couple of ice-fishing trips lined up that I’m looking forward to. Late ice is going to be exciting, and so is the open water season when it gets here. Anglers who live in the Midwest have a lot of fishing options, and I like that.

To see all the newest episodes of Fishing the Midwest television, visit fishingthemidwest.com


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