Chances are good if you’re reading this post, you are the serious angler who has everything – or at least your wife or girlfriend thinks you do. So as Christmas approaches, perhaps your best plan of action is to email a link of this story to her, and simply place the gift number in your email subject line: “Hint for Santa: I could really use No. 1!” There’s something here for any budget, and maybe she’ll return the favor with a similar note that makes your holiday shopping experience a bit less hectic.
1. Minn Kota Micro Remote ($99.99)
If you’re an electric-steer trolling motor guy, chances are good you own a Minn Kota bow mount with i-Pilot or i-Pilot Link. And why wouldn’t you – the made-in-the-USA motors are practically bulletproof, and you don’t need an engineering degree to run them. The motors come with a foot pedal and wireless remote, but many anglers choose not to wear the standard remote around their neck with the lanyard because it’s too bulky. To avoid looking like Flavor Flav in the boat, this Christmas ask for a Minn Kota Micro Remote. As the video below proves, the Micro Remote gives you full command of your i-Pilot or i-Pilot Link motor in a simplified and compact package. Heck . . . Santa could give Dasher, Dancer and team the night off and steer his sleigh with one!
2. Tungsten Bullet Weights ($5.99 to $7.99 per pack)
No one wants to get coal in their Christmas stocking, but tungsten is another story. Here’s the skinny: Tungsten is a popular material among avid bass anglers because its greater density than lead makes a tungsten sinker about 50 percent smaller. The only downside to tungsten is cost, and that’s why sinkers made from this magic material are the perfect “I want it, but I’m too cheap to buy it for myself” gift. Bullet Weights Inc. offers five sizes of Tungsten Bullet Weights – 1/8, 3/16, 1/4, 3/8 and 1/2 ounces – so there’s a perfect sinker for any situation. Best colors are black or watermelon; two to four pieces per pack. Use a high-strength braid and tie good knots.
3. Huk Performance Raglan Long-Sleeve Crew ($34.99)
If you tell your significant other you’d like No. 3 for Christmas and she pronounces the brand “Huck” instead of “hook”, please don’t laugh. Remember, Santa knows if you’ve been naughty or nice. Huk Gear not only looks great, but it’s designed to keep anglers comfortable and safe, too. Features on this Raglan Long-Sleeve Crew include: durable Poly knit with moisture transport to keep you dry; mesh vent at lower back to regulate temperature; anti-microbial so you don’t smell like a fish; sun protective so you don’t burn; and spandex (only a little, and it’s our little secret) for freedom of movement while casting and fighting fish. Huk shirts are available in a wide variety of bold color schemes, so don’t be shy.
4. FishUSA P-Line Aluminum Pliers ($18.95)
Pliers might not be the sexiest gift you find in your stocking, but these bad boys are so good your buddies might try to steal them. Unlike steel pliers that rust and become worthless when exposed to the elements, P-Line Aluminum Pliers don’t require special care and they’ll be ready to remove hooks from the jaws of anything that swims. Strong, durable pliers don’t have to be expensive, so if you have more than one boat, or if you’re prone to fumblitis over the water, ask Santa for two or three P-Line pliers. Still not convinced? Check out the video below from Lake Erie walleye guru Capt. Ross Robertson.
5. Costa Low-Light Polarized Glasses ($159)
We all have our favorite pair of polarized fishing glasses, and more than likely your go-to model, which probably has gray or amber lenses, works well for 75 percent of your good-light time on the water. But money is tight and you can’t justify forking over another $150-$200 to specifically target that other 25 percent, those low-light periods of early morning, late afternoon or heavy overcast. Time for the lady in your life to rescue you with new Costa Brine sunglasses. Be clear that she should order the Sunrise 580P lens (think yellow), which is high contrast and allows for maximum light transmission. Let her pick the frame color: black or tortoise. FYI: Built by hand in a workshop in Daytona Beach, Florida, Costas are examined by at least eight pairs of eyes before their head elf gives his nod of approval. All Costas have a lifetime warranty.
6. Minn Kota Premium Handle and Cable ($49.99)
If you skipped over the Micro Remote text and video (stocking stuffer No. 1), it’s probably because you’re a bass or multi-species guy who runs a cable-steer bow-mount Minn Kota Fortex, Maxxum or Edge trolling motor. You live by the KISS Principle, and to keep you fishing longer no matter how many times you stow and deploy your bow mount, Santa should slip an ultra-strong Premium Handle and Cable (part MKA-49) into your stocking. Simply replace the standard rope with this coated stainless-steel braided cable and never mess with it again.