Over the years I have learned that there are some things you can forget and still have a great fishing trip, while leaving other items behind could result in an early return back home. While I’ve never had to cut a trip short there have been times when I wished I had remembered to pack a certain item. Now I make a checklist every time I’m getting ready to head out the door, whether it is for an overnight trip or just a few hours. This helps to ensure I bring everything I need, and it also takes some of the stress out of packing. Here are few of the things that are always on my list, and that you don’t want to forget when you go on your next fishing trip.


If you plan on standing in the water a pair of waders or extra pants are essential, unless you enjoy wearing wet clothes all day. At the very least you will want to bring an extra pair of dry socks, trust me your feet will appreciate it at the end of the day. A brimmed hat is something that I never leave home without, especially when I fishing in the bright summer sun. I also recommend bringing a light jacket if you are going to be casting in the early morning.



It has always surprised me at how many anglers forget to bring a towel, even a small one. A towel is a versatile piece of gear that should be standard in every angler’s kit. It can not only be used to help you stay dry and comfortable, it can also help you keep your expensive gear functioning properly. A towel can be used to wipe corrosive salt water off of your rod and reel, and remove dirt and mud that you might not want to touch with your bare hands.


Tackle box

Some anglers go so far as to carry two tackle boxes just to make sure they have everything they need. This isn’t always necessary, unless you are planning on an extended trip. A few items that you will want to make sure are always packed in your tackle box include your lures, bait and extra line, along with a knife and pair of long nose pliers. When you have to remove the hook from the mouth of the fish, you will be glad that you packed at a pair of pliers. I also recommend bringing a tape measure so you can accurately document your catch.


Miscellaneous items

There are a few other items that you don’t want to forget, the most important being your fishing license. Forgetting this small item could result in expensive fines and your trip being cut short. Insect repellent is always advisable, along with a bottle of sunscreen. A first aid kit is another piece of gear you don’t want to leave home without.

These are a few of the items that every angler should have, and can keep you from having to cut your fishing trip short.