Well winter is almost over and its time to get the tackle out from its winter hibernation for a good cleaning in preparation for the new trout fishing season.

There are a few things that should be done each spring to ensure you tackle is on tip top condition before going out on your first fishing trip.

  • Check fly lines for cracks
  • Clean reel and apply lubrication
  • Wax rod furrels
  • Re-new knots for the line connections
  • Check rods for any cracks or chips.
  • Inspect cork handle
  • Check waders for leaks
  • Check fly selection
  • Inspect leader material
  • Re-new all licenses and permits

cleaning fly line

These are some of the main items that need sorting before a new season begins. Of these I would suggest checking the fly line and rod as the most important. 

“Checking the fly line for cracks”

When you put away your gear at the end of the previous season you would have probably left one or two fly lines still on their reels and depending on the place or storage there will no doubt be some coil memory left on the line from being stored so long in that position.

My suggestion to you before going to fish is you un spool the line onto a bucket of soapy water then after about half an hours soak slowly pull the line through a soft cloth squeezed in your other hand. While doing this check for any cracks or chips along the line and assess them for integrity.

If there are a lot then it would be better to purchase a new line than risk losing some trout to breakages. Working this process you will take any grime or dirt away as well as slowly get the line straight. Here is a couple of RIO products videos on how to do that and apply dressing to the fly line to keep it fishing well for years.

Some branded lines are better at keeping its intended shape than other budget lines so it will depend on this how many times you need to do this to really get it straight. I would be careful not to pull at it too hard for fear of damaging it but a gentle squeeze is all that is required.  If you are still having problems tying on end to a fence pole and walking away stretching the whole line out can usually do the trick.  If the line is really dirty then Gherke’s Line Cleaner can really get into the pores and do that for you.

Waxing the rod ferrules!

Another important part of gear maintenance is waxing the rod ferrules. The ferrule is where the rod sections join with one inserting into another. These can become smooth over time with building breaking the rod for each outing and when this happens it is quite likely that they will come apart during casting. If this happens the top section will either come away all together or slightly and if the later happens and you hook a fish there is a good chance the rod will break. So to avoid both of these scenarios you need to wax the ferrules regularly so they stay tight during a fishing session. As a rule I would always check the ferrules every half hour or so when fishing just to be sure but treating them with wax can make a big difference and they will usually stay intact for a whole session.

Hope you enjoyed this small post on getting ready for the season. In fact these techniques should be used the season throughout but especially at the start of a new trout fishing season. Any comments or questions please feel free to leave them below.

L.L.Bean Ultimate book on Fly Fishing!

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