Trying to catch one last giant before winter claims the laskes of the North reuires special preparation.
The year is coming to a close but there is still a number of die hard musky anglers who will fish right to the bitter end. Whether you are taking advantage of the super late season regulations in the northern range of musky country or going through a cold streak in the South, being ready for cold weather takes a little preparation.
Here are seven things that might help you cope with the ultra-cold weather of late fall.
1. Extra Bilge Pump Cartridges
This is something many people don’t consider. Bilge pumps are just motors that are submerged in water. They work great in the summer but in cold temperatures — and especially on sub-freezing mornings — they can become frozen and burn out quickly. It is important to consider these in the fall because if you take a wave over the bow or for whatever reason get water in the boat, it is very important to get it out of the boat.
Most bilge pump cartridges are easy to change and the pumps themselves are readily accessible. Find out which brand of pump is installed in your boat and buy an extra cartridge to keep in your boat. All you need is a cheap pair of wire strippers and butt connectors to connect wires. Splicing the wires in the boat may not be ideal but it will get you out of a jam. This problem can be fixed with little technical knowledge.
2. Water Repelling Spray
In the late fall, water and freezing temperatures are always a tough combination that we must constantly fight. Simple tasks such as deploying the trolling motor and opening a rod holder can become more difficult. A majority of musky fishermen use a sliding shaft trolling motor system which can become difficult to deploy in cold weather, and even very dangerous. I have placed myself in some tricky situations using too much force trying to get the trolling motor head in the water. Also, when trolling or using live bait, the rod holder (especially a clam-type holder like a Down East Salty) can freeze, which makes it hard to get the rod out of the holder.
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December 2018/January 2019