Native Fishing Buddy

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December 22, 2010 By Neil Taylor

Native watercraft accessories: “The Fishing Buddy”

Native Watercraft and their related companies (Watertrail Paddling Gear) address all the needs for accessorizing for their fishing watercraft. There have been design changes to the actual boats that have all needs addressed for the kayak angler. There are other accessories that can be a great investment for the owner of their boats. Two great options in the same category are the “Fishing Buddy” and the “collapsible Fishing Buddy.” The basic needs these address are:

  1. Rod holders for “extra” fishing rods, spinning or baitcasting
  2. Tackle and supplies storage
  3. Easy access to #1 and 2.

The full size Fishing Buddy has significantly more space than a “milk crate”, which was the old standard for fishing kayaks. It is also enclosed for weatherproofing, keeping the contents drier than someone utilizing a porous “milk crate”. There is a shoulder strap and side handles plus a thin bungee cord on the lid for pinning down an item to the lid of the buddy. The Fishing Buddy has six rod holders that are removable if desired. The angler who doesn’t have six rods may want to use the other rod holders for other accessories, such as their pliers, perhaps a stake-out pole, fish gripping tool or other item that will fit in those tubes. The insulated center section can be used for tackle and supplies or, if desired, cold drinks. There are two side pockets that can be utilized for items such as leader line, scissors, bags of lures or pliers. The top lid and the side pockets have “easy to open” Velcro fasteners keeping all sections watertight but easy access.

The “collapsible” Fishing Buddy is an item that can be an option for the minimalist angler who doesn’t have nearly as many fishing rods. It is different in construction and not an insulated bag but quick-drying mesh. There are two rod holders, side handle straps, one side bag compartment, two other side compartments and two tool holders built in. This is an easy-folding collapsible aluminum frame, durable and light.

Both models are a big improvement on the “do-it-yourself” crates of the past. With heavy use, these bags don’t show any deterioration and with the handles, are much more comfortable and less tedious to carry.

The Fishing Buddy (my tackle “Organizer”) can cover a multitude of other purposes- A look in my Fishing Buddy:

  • It has abundant room to keep tackle trays inside the main comparment, which you can easily access immediately behind the angler. (Tip: Labels or color codes on tackle trays are helpful for limiting search time for a particular tray of lures.)
  • It has leader line spools in the side pockets. It also has spare spools for my fishing reels, if needed for a “quick changeout” of a serious tangle of line.
  • The side pockets are also contain needle nose pliers, a “de hooker” tool and a scissors, all necessary items during a day of fishing.
  • In the main compartment, there are always other supplies and “tools” safely stored such as: Extra sunscreen, a knife, knife sharpener, spare batteries, digital camera in a dry bag, first aid supplies, a handheld flare gun, VHF radio and handheld GPS. The end result? As a guide or “the angler”, I have complete “peace of mind” knowing I have all the tackle and supplies I need with me for my fishing trips.

One of the biggest overall benefit of the Fishing Buddy: It makes for easy “setup” and “breakdown” before and after trips. Rather than five trips with an arm full of different items, why not make one trip with the easy carrying handles on the Fishing Buddy? You just might want to make the Native Fishing Buddy your all-purpose “organizer”.

For more information on these accessories: http://www.watertrailgear.com/overview.cfm?select=bag

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Neil Taylor
Full time kayak fishing guide, Neil was an advocate for conservation since before the time he started guiding. Outdoor writer, speaker and radio show host, Neil connected closely with Captain Mel Berman and did many positives with Mel to promote ethical angling. After Mel passed away, Neil managed www.capmel.com and eventually became that web site’s owner.