UPCOMING EVENT: HIGH SCHOOL FISHING - 2019 - Pickwick Lake

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

Gift Ideas for Every Angler

Gift Ideas for Every Angler

Picking out a holiday gift for an angler can be a pretty tough task if you aren’t intimately familiar with their fishing needs, but it’s not impossible. Almost any of the below would be worthy gifts, and with a little tweaking they might be adaptable for someone who is particularly difficult to shop for. If none of the below fit the bill or budget, then there’s always the old standby of a Tackle Warehouse gift card, which will be appreciated by any angler.

Below, we’ve endeavored to outline some good options in each category of tackle. If you get it in your head to buy an angler a rod or reel, you should probably ask what model that person would like before you pull the trigger. As for rods, a medium-heavy-power, fast-action rod is probably the most versatile, but most intermediate or advanced anglers already have a few of those. So, asking can prevent an otherwise excellent gift from being redundant or getting less use than a slightly different model would.

 

Lew's Custom Speed Stick

Rods

Shimano Zodias: $190-$200

Shimano has been building out the Zodias line of rods over the last couple years, and they’re sharp-looking rods that feel great in hand. They have models for just about any spinning or casting application, but one that is really sweet is the 7-6, medium-heavy-power, moderate-fast-action glass rod (ZDS176MH-G). It features some fiberglass in the construction for a softer action, and Alex Davis says it’s the best Strike King 6XD rod going. It’s great for casting most deep-diving crankbaits but is still extremely lightweight and simply incredible at keeping fish hooked.

 

Daiwa Tatula Elite: $180

The Daiwa Tatula Elite sticks might take a little getting used to on the cosmetic front, but they feel great and come in a bunch of different actions designed by pros who are among the best in the world at each specific technique. The spinning rods feel particularly nice, and Cody Meyer designed a 7-foot, medium-light-power, fast-action model that is the deal for drop-shotting and can pull double duty for other light stuff like a Ned rig or a neko rig.

 

Lew’s Custom Speed Stick Series: $130-$170

The Custom Speed Stick Series from Lew’s has a rod for pretty much everything. Spending about $150 on a rod is virtually guaranteed to get you a really good stick these days, and the Custom Speed Sticks live up to that. They’re light, they look good and they’ll hold up well to years of action.

 

Abu Garcia Vendetta: $80

Checking in at about $80, the Vendetta is a solid budget offering from Abu. The Veritas is very popular as well and just a bit more, and between the two series there’s probably a rod to fit the bill.

 

13 Fishing Defy Black: $60

13 Fishing offers a lot of rods at lower price points, and they’re actually quite good. It’s hard to expect too much from a $60 rod, but the Defy Black rods look amazing and fish well for what they are. If you’re looking for a budget rod that will impress the angler on your list, you’d do well to consider something from 13 Fishing.

 

Shimano Curado K

Reels

Lew’s SuperDuty: $180   

The SuperDuty is an absolute tank of a reel. It’s not the lightest reel around, but for flipping and frogging it’s hard to beat. It’ll last and last, and the drag is good to go for whatever size fish you’re catching. The standard model is best for most bass applications, but the Lew’s SuperDuty Wide Spool is a dynamite option for folks who like to chunk big swimbaits.

 

Shimano Stradic Ci4+: $230

The best isn’t usually cheap, but the Stradic Ci4+ has been the choice spinning reel for so long for good reason. There are no downsides to it. It’s light, buttery smooth and the drag is good. Depending on your gift recipient’s fishing style, you’ll want to buy either the 2500 or 2300 size. It’s a kingly gift that almost any angler would be hyped about.

 

Shimano Curado K: $180

For a long time the Curado was the go-to reel for many. Though it has a lot of competition these days, the new Curado K is a good one. The K is sleek and black (unfortunately not green), and it’s smoother and nicer than its predecessor in just about every way. It also comes in an 8.5:1 gear ratio, which is increasingly popular and great for flipping and many non-cranking techniques.

 

Okuma RTX: $100

Priced right, the Okuma RTX is Matt Arey’s spinning reel of choice, and he particularly likes the drag. A good drag is a great way to set a more affordable spinning reel apart from the pack. If you can’t spring for the Stradic or perhaps the person you’re buying for doesn’t use spinning gear much, this could be a good choice.

 

Abu Garcia REVO S Gen 4: $130

The first generation of Abu Garcia REVO reels was a revelation for many. Now on Gen 4, the REVO S is still a very affordable option for a baitcasting reel. It’s not going to feel like a $200 reel, but it’ll get the job done for sure.

 

Fishing tackle

Hard Baits

Duo Realis Spinbait: $14

Spy baits are about the hottest thing going now, and the Duo Realis Spinbaits in the 80 and 90 sizes are the most popular ones. They’re also annoyingly pricey to purchase for yourself, making them a perfect holiday gift to give or receive. A shad or minnow color would be perfect for anywhere, and a perch color could be a nice addition if you’re shopping for someone up north.

 

Jackall Rerange: $15

Jerkbaits are pretty hot right now, and there are a lot of options you can’t go wrong with such as a Lucky Craft Pointer, a Luck-E-Strike STX with new hooks and split rings or a Megabass Vision 110. If you’re looking for something new, the Jackall Rerange could be a good one to try. Alex Davis loves it in cold water, and it casts a mile with Jackall’s new weight-transfer system.

 

River2Sea Whopper Plopper 110: $17

Whopper Ploppers catch the fire out of bass, and the new 110 size is a great offering that’s a little more castable than the 90 size and not as intimidating as the 130. There are no bad colors, but black and bone are the most popular.

 

Z-Man/Evergreen ChatterBait Jack Hammer: $16  

It’s very expensive for a vibrating jig, but is a very good vibrating jig. Probably a luxury more than a necessity, the Jack Hammer will catch fish and impress anyone who receives it. The 3/8-ounce model is probably the most versatile size, and there isn’t a bad color in the bunch.

 

Strike King 6XD: $6-$7

The Strike King 6XD is a staple deep crankbait, but deep cranks are easy to lose in brush or line or on a pesky stump on a ledge. As such, it’s always good to stock up on them, and you can’t really go wrong with a classic. There are other excellent deep crankbaits out there, but it’s hard to match the price and performance of the 6XD.

 

Soft Baits

Soft Baits

Jackall Crosstail Shad: $5

The Crosstail Shad is a smallmouth staple, and next year’s Costa FLW Series Northern Division figures to feature at least two tournaments dominated by brown fish. If your angler lives in Florida this might not be the ideal buy. In other parts of the country, an angler can never have enough drop-shot baits.

 

Gene Larew TattleTail Worm: $4.50

The TattleTail comes in a variety of sizes, but the new 8-inch model is particularly sweet. It’s great on a big shaky head during ledge season and will work as well on a neko rig or wacky rig for times when you want something a little bigger. You can never go wrong with green pumpkin.

 

Castaic Jerky J: $6

Slinging a Jerky J on the back of a big Scrounger has caught a lot of fish the past few years, and it figures to produce again this summer on the Tennessee River. The 5-inch size is pretty affordable, but the 7-inch size is a little on the expensive side for a soft plastic. Either would make a great gift.

 

Keitech Swing Impact FAT swimbait: $6-$10

The Swing Impact FAT is perhaps the most versatile swimbait ever and almost certainly the most beloved by smallmouths. The new 6.8- and 7.8-inch sizes are very tantalizing, but all the smaller sizes work as well, and they come in just about any color you could want.

 

Strike King Rage Craw: $5.50

Simply put, the Rage Craw is a staple that should be in every tackle box. From a trailer to a standalone flipping bait, it’s extremely versatile, affordable and fishy.

 

Berkley XCD Superline Cutters

Extras

Berkley Superline Cutters: $10

These little dudes are cheap, and they cut braid with ease. Anglers can always use another cutting tool, and these fit the bill perfectly.

 

Flambeau WP3012: $8

Jody has been using a handful of the Flambeau WP3012 boxes as his primary terminal tackle boxes for a couple years now. You’ll see little to no rust in them, and they are great for tossing in a bag quickly for a day as a co-angler or fishing with a buddy. Two or three of these can take care of most terminal tackle needs.

 

6th Sense Peg X Stoppers: $2

An angler can never have enough pegs, and the ones from 6th Sense are good and cheap. There are other options, but the entire genre makes a great stocking stuffer.

 

T-H Marine G-Force Trolling Motor Handle: $33

Jody has been running one of these for about a year now. Now worrying aobut having your pull cord break is very freeing. The handle itself is nice enough, but the steel cable is the deal for longevity. Having no stretch in the equation makes it a little easier to pop a sticky trolling motor up, too.

 

Jewel Hound Dog Lure Retriever: $9.50

The obvious draw of this is the cute/terrifying dog shape, but even if it looked like nothing special it’d be worth owning. Coupled with some cord or heavy braid and an old reel, you’ll save a ton of money on crankbaits and the like with a good lure retriever.

 

Tags: jody-white-and-jesse-schultz  article 

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