How to store fishing gear over winter?

Proper care of your fishing gear is very important to preserve the materials they are made from.

Store your rods some place safe to avoid damaging.

The end of fishing season means that it is time to clean and store you fishing gear.
This is a chance to look at a couple of things that can cause troubles in the spring when you head back to the water. A good angler does not necessarily mean being very good at maintaining fishing gear.
By taking a little time and effort, you can ensure that your gear will be ready for next season.
This will also extend the life of your fishing gear and, by storing it, you will know what to purchase during the winter months as this is the time to buy at discount prices.

Expensive rods and those with natural cock handles and grips require more care, as for the cheaper rods very little maintenance before storage is necessary.

First of all you need to wash rods with fresh water and let air dry.
If you have a jointed rod, disassemble it and also wipe each section with water.

Once this first step is done, lubricate all the cork handles and grips so they stay moist. Cork wax can be purchased in most shops (this wax consists mostly of lanolin - a substance derived from wool-bearing animals such as sheep).

Then check all of your line guides and make sure that there are no scratches, cracks or frying and that all the guides are securely attached to the rod. Replace all the guides if you find your lines have worn a groove in the guide. A nick in the guide can cut your line and you will lose your favourite lure or your personal best.

Store your rods some place safe to avoid damaging. Placing the rods on the sealing or on the wall of your garage is often the best way. Simply attach some hooks or a custom made fishing rod holder and place the rods there.

Fishing reels are probably the most expensive piece of equipment for most anglers and very often one of the most neglected pieces of equipment.
Regular maintenance can preserve your fishing reel for many years and the process is rather easy.

First of all, it is recommendable to remove the fishing lines and store it on a larger diameter objects or spools to avoid a ‘line memory’ problem. This problem occurs if you don’t remove that line from the reel and in the spring you will notice that the line has become very curly and will not straighten out properly when casting and retrieving your baits. If the line is old, strip if off and take it to one of the line recycling centres in your area.

After you remove the lines, the next step is to disassemble your reel. Remove the handle and spool, wash all the dirt with regular, warm soapy water.

After rinsing, use a soft cloth to polish and dry the reel without scratching the surface. Some people use air compressor for this purpose. Once the reel has dried, lubricate all the moving parts inside the reel and the crank receiver. There is a wide range of products that can be used as lubricants such as all-purpose oil, Vaseline, gun oil or special fishing reel lubricants available in most fishing tackle stores. It is important to use a sufficient amount of oil on moving parts.
Store your reel in a lock bag to keep the moisture in and dust out. Some people attach the reel back to the rod and use a wrap that goes around the reel.

As far as the line is concerned, there isn’t much to be said.
As mentioned, most anglers recommend monofilament or fluorocarbon line to be stripped off the reel. Leaving the line on the reel will cause a ‘line memory’ problem - if you don’t remove that line from the reel and in the spring you will notice that the line has become very curly and will not straighten out properly when casting and retrieving your baits.
Some anglers, in order to make it easier to spool new line in the spring or to save some money, leave some twenty to thirty yards of monofilament or fluorocarbon line on the reel as ‘backing’.  This way you don’t have to recycle the line that’s been on the reel and still is in good shape.

Proper tackle storage is all about organisation.
Take time to get it in order. Always store your tackle in a dry spot to avoid any rusting problems on hooks and lures.

Waders are made of synthetic material or rubber and their proper care is very important.
Clean them with freshwater and dry thoroughly. Boot style waders should be packed with newspaper to help keep the boots in proper shape.
Roll them up; do not fold because this will create cracks and creases that will leak. Place them in a garbage back, preferably black to block out light.
You will want to store them in a cool and dark location out of direct sunlight.
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