I don’t think I’m a tackle tart, a reel, to me, is just something that holds line. It has to be functional and work properly, that’s all I ask of it, apart from being cheap, of course. I would have to be a multi millionaire before I even considered buying a top end reel that cost’s the earth and then the moon and stars to have a couple of spare spools to go with it. Apart from anything else the fishing I do just doesn’t justify it. If I fished the salt I might just go out and buy a reel that will cope with saltwater and fish that fight back, but even then cost and funtionality would take priority over hyped up marketing. No, I prefer reels that come with several spare spools and if I want more they will only cost a tenner.
Lines are something else I don’t buy a lot of, unless they are worn out. I find one I like and stick with it. The one I use most for fishing costs £25 and lasts me years. I have found another that I like a lot, I used it for my CCI test, but it costs nearly twice as much and only lasts half as long, guess which one I will fish with?
I even begrudge spending a small fortune on high end rods. My rod cupboard might suggest otherwise, but several of these were needed when I was learning distance casting. My wife wonders why I need ‘another?’ rod, she just doesn’t understand that rods do different things, one’s enough surely. You and I know differently, don’t we. Besides, I just don’t go out and buy a rod I like, it has to have a purpose, if it didn’t I would have a couple of Scott S4′s and a couple of Winston Bii x’s as well, not to mention a Z axis and/or a TCX or two.
A year or two ago I was the highest bidder for a ‘grab bag’ on a charity auction on Sexyloops. No-one knew what was going to be in it, but when it arrived I had a reel, some clothes, some flies, various fly tying tools, plus a hat full of other bit’s and bobs (including the hat) but the best of all were two rods, neither of which I would ever have tried, one was a St Croix Legend Elite, now a favorite fishing rod, and the other was a Targus Pro Series 906, which has become my all time favorite rod, it even got me through my CCI test, if I underline it by one it becomes a pretty good distance rod and if I put a #6 line on it becomes my favorite presentation rod. If the day ever comes that I take my Masters it will be the rod I will use.
Waistcoats (vests) and bags are a slightly different matter. I used to have just one waiscoat and it servered me well for years, but it was beginning to look a bit tatty. I bought a back and front pack system, it had loads of space, which, of course, I proceeded to fill. I carried everything for every eventuality and it ended up weighing a ton. If I just used the front pack the main weight baring strap was around my neck and as I have a problem with one of the discs in my neck I used to be extremely sore by the end of the day. I now use a similar system but the weight is on my shoulders, so I don’t have a problem fishing a long day. I really think I would be a bag person, if only I could find a decent one.
The other sundries I just buy as I need them. I do do through a fair number of leaders so I bulk buy them at the shows I go to. I steer clear of co-polymers, I think they are brittle, and I try not to use fluorocarbons because they just don’t rot away if you are unfortunate enough to lose a peice in a branch, or worse, in a fish. Nope, good old mono for me, most of the time.
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