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Getting Ready for the Season

By SChaconas - Published January 04, 2011 - Viewed 1036 times


January is a busy month for me. I probably won’t be on the water but 3 or 4 times, but I’ll be getting ready for shows/seminars/sponsors/articles, and the new season.
First shows. I have them all booked by now and have to confirm my travel and hotels. I also start to get my clothing and the “right” food and snacks to take along. I also clean out my truck, as I will be nearly living in it when on the road. I am also calling show promoters and tackle shops to get signed up for their events. I publicize my appearances on Face Book, email and any way I can to get a good turn out for me and the show or store. I carry a good supply of BoatUS ANGLER Magazines to hand out.
Next, I have to get all of my baits ready for tank demos…along with the rods and reels with appropriate line. I need to cut hook barbs off so I don’t hook those fish in the tank. I prepare several tackle boxes for each seminar. If I’m doing a top water seminar, I have different poppers…walking baits, and a few buzzbaits. Each one is specifically chosen to conform to my seminar. I pack up small boxes with different style hooks, some with jigs, others with weights…so I have just about everything I need for all seasons.
For my seminars, I create Power Points, for 2 reasons. One to get organized, and two, I might actually use them at some locations if they have the equipment set up for these presentations. This is the best way to keep my seminars current.
I also take this time to organize my written articles. I am always amazed how many I have started, but never quite finished. Once they are organized into one folder on my Mac, then I can get to them to wrap them up. I also look at photos to see which I might use for upcoming articles. I size them and get them cropped and ready. I also have to keep up with my 3 monthly columns and my weekly fishing reports for Comcast sports.
For the new season, I go through all of my lures. Take some out, add some others to try or expand my arsenal. I also repair any baits, like using touch up paint from Jann’s Netcraft. I also replace all of my trebles, especially the feathered trebles from MUSTAD. Starting the season with sharp hooks is a MUST. For spinnerbaits, I check/change skirts and sharpen hooks, and polish or replace blades. For this inventory, I make sure I have what I need based on the past. I do this for all of my lures, and organize my soft plastics into large plastic bags - tubes, worms, creature baits, etc. I remove what I didn’t use before and tweak what I have. Year after year, this gets easier.
I also repair my reels and rods. Replacing guides and tips of my rods, cleaning and servicing my reels…often replacing many of them with new gear. I strip line off each one, putting fresh line on them when I start fishing.
I send all of my sponsors a detailed report on my on and off the water activities, including media exposure and how I have been able to promote their products. Next comes putting in my product requests with my sponsors. This sounds easy, but it isn’t. I need a good efficient list of what I will need, replacing worn or lost gear…and getting some of the new stuff to evaluate and to put into the hands of my clients. I keep a very organized inventory to help with this. 

I also have to renew all of my licenses, First Aid, CPR, and get everything in line to take delivery of my new Skeeter in late February, like my new DEKA AGM batteries, ordering a new custom cover from Aurora canvas…even lining up a new Nissan Titan to tow it with from my friends at Passport Nissan.
Conditioning is also part of my January. It’s not the same as being in “fishing shape”, but I power walk with my wife along with weigh lifting. I even have special walking shoes from TEVA to keep me on my feet. During the weekends, we walk for 3-4 hours twice and add some weekday treadmill and exercise bike with a light weight workout to stay in shape. By March, I’ll be on my feet for 8 hours casting 2000 times a day.
Oh yeah, if I am even remotely free to fish on a nice day…when the phone rings and one of my buddies wants me to go out, I have a traveling tackle box that I fill with the baits of the season and a few key poles…January has 31 days, and I use them all!

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