Once you start fishing, you tend to start buying a lot of gear. At a certain point in your fishing career, you will have multiple rods, multiple reels, and more than multiple lures. If a buddy calls you up short notice, asking the dumb question of whether or not you are down to fish, you might only have an hour to prepare. With all this gear you have acquired over the years, it is very possible you may forget something. This is where your well-organized inventory list comes in handy. It helps you visualize what you need to bring. It also tells you what you need to buy next time you find yourself in the local tackle shop. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve come home from a TAM (Tackle Acquisition Mission) and realized that I forgot to buy that pack of Senkos that I ran out of last time i was on the water.
The first step in taking inventory is finding what medium you will keep your list on. My personal inventory list is on Google Sheets, but if you aren’t much of a computer person maybe a pocket sized note pad, would be better. Google Sheets is good for people with smartphones because their inventory is always on them, and they can make changes wherever they are, as long as they can connect to the internet. The reason I said POCKET SIZED note pad is because you can bring it out on the water, or into the tackle shop. The most important part of choosing your medium is that your list can be viewed wherever you are.
The next step you should consider is what type of information will you store on this list. This is another way your medium can affect your inventory, typically, an online spreadsheet maker will be able to store more data. Some people like to have a lot of information, others like to keep it to the basics. For the minimalists, a note pad would be sufficient. Some basic forms of data you should include are: quantity, brand, type of bait, and colour. Other forms you might want are: price, things you need to buy next time, and baits that are your most productive.
The last step is actually taking the inventory. This can take a while so you may want to break it into chunks, for example maybe just do crankbaits one day, then soft plastics the next. Once it is finished, enjoy being the most organized angler on the water! The key is to keep it up to date, if you don’t it will be useless to you.
I started taking inventory because of fly tying so that is the feature image of the article but it is the same concept for fishing gear. I plan on doing my fishing gear inventory this spring before fishing season!