When you’re a die-hard angler, taking care of your tackle, boat, rods and reels during the off-season can include some extreme boat prep measures. Of course, “off-season” could be anytime these days, because there are so many forms of fishing here in Michigan, but bass anglers will know what I’m talking about. So what do you do when the ice is shielding the boat from gliding across the winter water?
Ensuring your motor is ready to go in Spring is the first priority, and most marinas can winterize your boat in about two weeks. Normal battery maintenance is a must that’s often overlooked, and it can be as simple as checking and filling water levels. For those not keeping their boat in a warm storage unit or garage, a trickle charge on the batteries can help keep them from freezing during our long cold winters.
Prepping tackle starts by tossing out old worms, organizing spinner baits and square bills. Re-lining reels and sorting rods in addition to restocking necessary items will allow you to stay on the water as long as possible when the time comes.
A lot of boat owners take the time to empty out the entire boat to check on and clean every nook and cranny of the boat. While doing this it is important to pay close attention to expiration dates on flares, emergency medical kits and fire extinguishers. If anything needs to be replaced, this is the time to do so, because we all know how annoying it can be to not have a bandage on the boat when you need one.
Playing with electronic units, marking weigh points and even studying maps waiting for the day the ice melts can bring new water to explore.
When that ice breaks and the sun comes out, being prepared eliminates the stress of finding (or replacing) items when all you want to do is fish. If you’re a diehard, do yourself the favor and prep when you can! You won’t regret it.
What is your routine to make sure your fishing boat is ready for the Winter and Spring? Let us know in the comments!