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How to Pack Tackle for Your Canadian Fishing Adventure

Written by: KOP Staff

One of the most stressful aspects of preparing for your fly-in fishing trip is trying to decide what to pack and what to leave behind in terms of fishing tackle.  With weight restrictions and space being a premium on a fly-in, prioritizing what kind of tackle to bring on your trip is an important consideration.
We encourage anglers to think about the following before deciding on what kind of tackle to pack:  What lake will I be going to?  What kind of fish do I want to catch?  What time of year will I be fishing?  Answering these questions will really help you reduce your tackle.  Here are some ideas to help you pick some tackle that we know will put fish in the boat and smiles on your faces:
Rods and Reels
We recommend anglers bring two-piece rods in shorter rod tubes to help keep your gear safe.  For bass and walleye, bring a few 6’6″ to 7′ medium or medium-light action spinning rods spooled up with 8-10lb test monofilament or 10-20lb test braid. We also like to have one bait-cast rod in the 7′ length to use for bottom-bouncing for walleye and throwing some larger bass baits.  Pike anglers looking for bigger pike should stick with a few 6’6″ to 7’6″ long medium-heavy action baitcast rods spooled up with 30-50lb test braid or 17lb test monofilament.
-1/8 to 3/8oz jigs (heavier jigs for fishing current areas, lighter jigs for fishing the shallows).
-5 to 10 packs of soft-plastic baits such as:
     -3″ grubs in white, yellow and chartreuse
     -3″ to 4″ paddle tail minnow baits in white, shad or smelt
-Little Joe style spinners (single hook for minnows, tandem for crawlers).  Hammered gold, chartreuse, silver and white blades are all you need
-Bottom-bouncers 1oz to 2.5oz (these keep your spinners on the bottom where the walleye are and help keep you out of the snags)
-Rapala Husky Jerks (#10-#12).  We love the clown, blue/ orange, gold colours.  Toss these out a long cast-length behind the boat, put it in gear and hold on.
Northern Pike
-12″ to 20″ Titanium or steel leaders
-Rapala Husky Jerks (#12) and X-Raps (#12)
-Spoons like the classic Daredevil, Johnson Silver Minnow (3″ to 5″ long)
-Bigger soft-plastic swimbaits like the Storm Swim Shad, 5″ to 7″ Fluke-Style baits (rigged on wide gap jigs or off-set worm hooks)
-1/2oz to 3/4 oz spinner baits (white or chartreuse)
-In-line bucktail spinners (larger Vibrax/ Mepps)
Smallmouth Bass
-1/8oz to 3/8oz tube jig heads and mushroom head jigs to rig plastics on
-1/0 to 4/0 off-set worm hooks to rig plastics on
-3″ tube jigs (brown, pumpkin, green pumpkin)
-4″ senko-style stick baits (white, green pumpkin)
-4″ to 5″ Fluke Style baits (white)
-Rapala X-Rap (#10) in white
-3″ topwater baits (Rebel Pop-R, Rapala Skitter Pop, Tiny Torpedo)
-Vibrax/ Mepps Spinners
We also recommend you pack a few pairs of pliers and hemostats as well as side cutters for hook extraction.  Hemostats are much lighter than most pliers and do the job just as well.  A fish handling glove really lets you keep a firm grip on a fish while removing hooks and holding your trophy for a quick picture.  Also, bring a small assortment of fluorocarbon or monofilament leader material in the 8 to 12lb test range for walleye and bass if you like to fish with superlines (braid).  Pike anglers will definitely need to bring an assortment of leaders to help land fish and save lures.
We hope this helps you out as you hit the tackle shops and go through your gear before your Kashabowie Outposts fishing adventure!
-KOP Staff