What do you get for the angler you love?

Sometimes Mom catches the bigger fish!

Sometimes Mom catches the bigger fish!

It is so difficult to buy for the man in your life.  You know that if you get him something other than fishing stuff, it'll just be a so-so Christmas.  And at the same time, it's overwhelming to pick the right gear for him because there's so much out there.  Just step into a Bass Pro shops and you will discover quickly that you are in over your head.  So what do you do?  Here are a couple of suggestions:

1.  Gift Cards Rock.  You can get your man a Tackle Warehouse gift card at a 10% discount during their 12 days of Christmas sale (www.tacklewarehouse.com).

2.  Buy him a day on the water with a fishing guide!  Instead of getting him more stuff that he doesn't know how to use, get him a day on the water with an expert that will help show him how to be successful with a few focused techniques (cough/cough...shameless plug for my guide business...consider a day walleye fishing in Michigan or smallmouth fishing on beautiful Lake George in the Adirondacks in Upstate New York!).  Check it out at www.nofishleftbehind.com.

3.  What kind of fish does your man/son enjoy fishing for?  Talk to a local tackle shop and get a couple of key plastics and hardbaits that work in your area.  One option that is almost fool proof - get your man a jerkbait, seriously.  Rapala's shadow rap shallow and deep options will catch smallmouth and largemouth bass, northern pike, walleyes, and perch.  All you need to do is get a couple of colors (they offer 24 options - now you know what I meant by overwhelming) that imitate the baitfish in your local lakes (perch/bluegill/smelt/etc.).  If you post a comment/question I promise to try and give you my best thought on colors for the area/kind of fish your man targets. 

4.  Probably the most important tool in fishing is the actual fishing rod itself.  I fell in love with FavoriteUSA's Summit this year.  It's the lightest rod on the market.  I like the 6'10" L spinning model.  They are a little pricey but well worth every penny spent.  You can find them at www.favoriteusa.com.  They have all kinds of other options for all kinds of budgets.

5.  Last, consider putting a card under the tree with a couple tickets to a sports show where he can actually "feel" the products and talk to pro's about the deets on the tackle.  Here in Michigan we have the Ultimate Fishing Show in Novi, MI about two weeks after Christmas.  Check out this link for more info.

Ultimately, you want to get him something that he will use and enjoy and not just another piece of equipment that just takes up space in the garage.  We at No Fish Left Behind love to help people learn and develop as fishermen.  Leave a comment and we would love to help you in this process!  We hope you have a blessed Christmas celebrating the central figure of Christmas - Jesus!

Smiles are priceless!  Give your man a fishing memory of a lifetime!