Tips for Fishing Like a Pro on a Budget

Tips for Fishing Like a Pro on a Budget

We all watch a bass tournament on television and drool over the professional’s high-end rods and reels, endless boxes of lures, and high-tech bass boats that make a new truck look like a cardboard box. Then comes the commercials, and we’re inundated with ads for flashy new lures, advanced fishing lines, and space-age rod materials.

You might think that to fish like a pro, you need to spend your lifesavings on fishing gear, but that’s simply not the case.

With a little ingenuity, you can still fish like a pro at a fraction of the cost.

Wait for Spring and Fall Sales

If you go to a tackle store in the middle of summer, during the height of vacation and fishing season, you’re going to pay top dollar. But if you wait until early spring or late fall, you can likely find some excellent deals. Many stores have early-season discounts to attract customers, and you can often find deals on even the most popular new products. The same goes for fall, when retailers are hoping to unload their fishing tackle to make room for seasonal items like hunting equipment and winter clothing.

Be Patient When Buying New Lures

It’s been said that lures are not made to attract fish, but to attract anglers. Flashy colors, advanced engineering, and unique designs all have their place, but remember that tackle manufacturers are competing for your attention, and those bright colors and shiny attachments may do more to catch your eye than a bass’s.

Back-Fill Your Spools

One of the most practical steps you can take to saving money is backfilling your spools with old line. New line is essential for pro-level anglers, but the entire reel doesn’t have to be filled with top-end braided material. Use cheap or old line to start filling the reel, and then add the essential stuff towards the end.

Use Ebay’s Wholesale Fishing Equipment

You can find some major savings by purchasing in bulk, and Ebay’s wholesale fishing section gives you everything you could need. You’ll find reels, leaders, lures, hooks, tackle boxes, and everything else you could need for an entire season of fishing.

Refurbish Old Lures

Your lures will get chipped. They will lose paint and their hooks will rust and become dull. You could throw them out and buy a new supply, or you could purchase a few materials to refurbish them.

A package of new hooks costs about $10 and gives you enough to re-hook plenty of lures. If the hooks are still in decent shape, take some steel wool to remove the rust and sharpen the ends with a file. You can also repaint your lures with water-resistant paint.

Make Homemade Tackle

Making lures at home is something that fly fishermen know well, but you can get creative and take the practice to bass fishing too. You can create spinner baits, top water lures, spoon lures, and more, all with discarded items you have in your home.

Stay on the Lookout for Snagged and Discarded Lures

There’s no shame in it. If you fish long enough, you’ll eventually come across lures snagged in trees, hooked on a log near the surface, or sitting by the shore. Why not put them to use? You can use your refurbishing skills to give these lures another shot at life, and you’ll also help remove trash that other anglers have left behind.

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