Wildhorse iced over and South Fork not far behind, many anglers are getting
ready to put their fishing gear away for the winter. A couple of weeks ago, we discussed
winterizing your boat, which many boaters know to do, but winterizing fishing
gear is also important. This week we will discuss fly fishing gear. Next week will be spinning gear.
first. Thoroughly clean and dry them
before storage. Many breathable waders
may be cleaned by hand washing or on the delicate cycle of a washing machine
with cool water. Do NOT dry them in a
clothes dryer. If you have Goretex
waders, add a water repellent treatment to them to help rejuvenate the water
resistant finish and then dry using a hair drier to set the repellent.
non-Gortex waders, hang them inside out to dry and then right side out. To store them for the winter, hang them by
the suspenders in a cool, dry place out of the sun. If you don’t have a place to hang them,
don’t fold them. Roll them up to avoid
creases. This will help prevent weak
spots developing on the crease which will lead to leaky waders.
boots and sandals, remove any laces, wash and dry thoroughly and store them next
to your waders. Add new laces if the old
ones are worn. If you have felt bottoms that are becoming detached, use a water
proof glue to re-attach the old ones or add new ones.
reel off of your rod, take the line off of your reel and clean both the reel
and line. For the reel, set the drag to its lowest setting, take the spool off
and remove any dry material with a brush or compressed air. Wash with a mild detergent, dry and reapply
lube to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Wipe excess lube off and store the reel in a neoprene reel case in a
cool dry place.
stretch the line to remove memory, and soak it in a mild detergent that doesn’t
contain any grease cutting compounds.
Rinse it off and dry it by pulling through a towel. For floating lines, apply a light application
of fly line dressing. Coil loosely and
store in a cool dry place.
rod apart and put a light coating of paraffin on the ferrules. Carefully wash the rod with a mild detergent,
dry thoroughly and apply furniture polish to the rod for protection. Check the ferrules for sharp edges and have
them replaced if found. Use a liquid
household cleanser to clean the cork handle, rinse and dry thoroughly before
storage. To help keep the handle clean
in the future, apply cork sealer.
of your fly boxes and make sure that none of the flies have rusted. Sharpen hooks and lightly lubricate any metal
hinges. Make sure everything is dry and
store in a cool dry place.
This is also a great time to completely empty your fishing
vest or pack and remove all the extra junk that you may have put in it during
the fishing season. You would be
surprised at what you have forgotten what you have put in a pocket. Re-organize the gear into appropriate pockets
and make a list of what you may need to replace (great list for Christmas
gifts). It is recommended that all
tippet and leaders be replaced annually.
spring comes all you have to do is put your line back on your reel, your reel
back on your rod and you are ready to go fishing.