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Old 03-20-2005, 04:24 PM
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The Essential Angler - Equipment

Well we have discussed some of the pitfalls of spending time in the "Out-of-Doors" as well as some essentials to pack. Now comes the "What to Pack Them Essentials In" part.
Again, every person and every situation is different, but good and bad packing systems can make or break a great fishing adventure. I lean towards quality and away from "Bargin Price". It might take you a little more time to save up the "duckets" for a quality piece of packing equipment, but when you get to the end of the trail and your arse is not draging and your hips are not burning..... oh yea, it's worth every bit!
Needless to say, there are many products on the table. From "Day" style packs and fannys, to full blown "Multi-Day" units for serious backcountry trips.
I have 2. The first is a 2000+ cu. in. day pack, that I will combine with a good ,spaious, fanny pack that holds 2 water bottles. This allows me to comfortably pack in all the essentials that I will need for the day. I am going to stop here and talk for a moment about the key word....DAY....meaning 24 hours!
When you spend time in the out-of-doors, figure this way as a good rule of thumb.
"I'm going to the xyz river for a few hours, honey. See you later".......This is a "Day" trip...24 hours, and you should have the ability to stay that long if the occasion arises!
"I am going to the xyz river with the guys, honey. I will be back tonight or early sunday" this is a "Multi-day" trip and you should have the ability to stay that long.
For a Day trip, or a Multi-Day you should always include your Survival Kit! Both of my packs have waist belts with good padding. This allows the weight to be carried on the hips as well as the shoulders. Packs, no matter what size, should have stash pockets and exterior lashing or harness systems for small or bulky items (food to fly rods) My small pack is a climbers (rock) pack that I have adapted for my needs.
The Pack should contain the following;
Made of a good pack-cloth material (500 Denier min) Waterproof!
Plenty of outside storage
Zipper systems that are easy to use, with Storm Flaps
Larger packs should have more than 1 access point to the Main compartment
Lashing options on the outside
Double seal top entry
Padding on shoulder and waist straps should be generous, not skimpy
A large pack should have an adjustable"ladder system" shoulder unit to fit torso
Internal frame (my favorite) but some like external
The pack should be able to accommodate Rod Tubes for extended, hands free travel
Note; The more adjusting you can do to the equipment, the more comfortable you can make it for you!
Lets talk about waterproof for a moment. No pack that I have owned in the past 30 years has ever been 100% waterproof! With that said, some are 99% and others are only 50 or so. The better the pack is made, the longer it will hold off the moisture. There are things such as pack covers that help, and having a change of clothes wraped in a plastic garbage bag helps alot!
Both my large and day packs were bought on sale, the 2 purchased for under $200.- for both, not a huge out-lay by any means. Researching is key. You can visit sports stores and hicking shops and try on a bunch.....for free!

Once you purchase the system that best suits you, you need to know what will go into it...... So next we will talk about First Aid and Clothing.
Here is a pic of my "Multi-Day" pack

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