Your first deep sea fishing trip is going to be an amazing adventure. That’s pretty much guaranteed.
The big question remains: what do you need to bring with you?
For the first time angler, deep sea fishing can be something of a mystery. Coming along with that mystery is what you need in your backpack.
Read on and we’ll give you all the information you need when it comes to tackle choices, clothing, and everything else you should make sure is in your bag before setting out and into the blue.
Getting the Tackle Right
Your tackle is one of the most important things to get right from the outset. Where you’re headed out will largely determine the size of rod and reel that you need, but as a general rule, you can stay prepared for a blue water trip by making sure you have the right stuff on hand when you hit the charter boat.
Rods and Reels
The central part of your fishing tackle is always going to be your rod and reel. After all, pretty much everything else can be changed out while you’re on the water.
While most charter companies, like ours, offer rods, reels, and tackle many of you have a favorite rod you may want to bring along.
For deep sea fishing, a medium-heavy, 6′ to 7′ pole is pretty much the standard. A medium pole can be used for lighter fish, it really depends on what your target species consists of.
You’ll want to go with braided line for your reel for the most part. It’s much stronger than the regular monofilament lines. Something in the range of 20lbs-50lbs is ideal for most people, but if you’re going for particularly big game you may need to go higher.
Hooks and Lures
Hooks are another source of concern for many anglers. The truth is that hook sizes aren’t standardized between brands so it can be hard to figure out exactly what you need. Circle hooks in the range of 4/0 to 7/0 are ideal for most people.
If you’re bringing your own lures, then you’ll want to do research on the fish species you’re targeting. Each species has their own individual tastes and you may be best off using those which are included on the boat by those who know what they’re doing.
The Other Essentials
Apart from the regular stuff, you’ll also want to ensure that you pick up some swivels, weights ranging from 4oz-10oz, and anything else you might think will help you out on the water.
Each angler usually has a preferred setup but if you’re still completely in the dark find a service which offers tackle. You’ll learn quickly, especially if you’re going out on a regular basis.
Dressing properly for your trip can make a big difference in how comfortable you are. After all, it can get quite a bit colder on the ocean than you’ll be experiencing on land.
In addition to the regular temperature being lower, you’ll also have to deal with the increased wind chill.
Of course, it can also get quite warm on the ocean as well, depending on the weather. This means it’s best to dress in three or four different layers so that you can change your dress at your leisure to remain comfortable.
For most people that will mean at least the following:
- A heavy jacket with a hood
- A lighter jacket underneath
- A base layer or light hoodie
- A t-shirt or other casual undershirt underneath
That will give you four different variations of upper body wear. Others may wish to do the same with their lower body or at least pull on a pair of good pants over shorts.
The important thing is being able to adapt to whatever the weather may bring.
Other Necessities for a Deep Sea Fishing Trip
If you’re on a charter boat, then it’s important to be aware that different boats have their own rules for what you are and aren’t bringing on.
For instance, many will forbid alcohol entirely but our charters will allow you to bring beer as long as it’s not in a glass bottle. No hard liquor, however.
You’ll also want to bring some snacks, something for lunch, and probably a camera of some sort to document your catches.
Some of the other things people have found useful include the following:
- A collapsible ice chest
- A hat
- SPF 30+ sunscreen
- Polarized sunglasses
- Seasickness medications
Just make sure to double check your bag the night before so that you can rest assured that you have everything you need.
Sunscreen is important no matter what time of year or the weather while on the open water. Between the lack of shadows on the boat’s deck and the fact that the water will be reflecting some of the sunlight, it’s easy to get burned even in weather you wouldn’t normally consider to be a threat.
Deep sea fishing can be an exhausting matter, even for those who are used to it. Some simple suggestions can make your trip go a lot easier.
The biggest one is this: don’t drink heavily the night before setting out. It will increase your chances of getting seasick and a hangover can definitely ruin a day on the water even if everything else goes well.
On top of that, you’re going to want to make sure that you’re in decent physical shape. If you’re planned out a bit further it may be time to spend a little bit of extra time in the gym before your trip.
Start making sure you’re extra well hydrated in the days leading up to your trip as well. Starting to drink more water three days or so beforehand can make your trip a lot smoother.
Lastly, if you’re prone to seasickness, then you’ll want to take your medication about an hour before embarking so that it’s already in full-effect before you arrive in a choppy ocean.
Are You Ready?
If you think that you’re adequately prepared for a deep sea fishing trip, then what’s holding you back? It’s about time to go on the trip that you deserve.
Getting ready isn’t nearly as much fun as hitting the water with the intent of bringing in a brand new fish story.
If you’re thinking about contracting a charter fishing boat to take you out for the time of your life, then we urge you to book with us and set up a brand new adventure.