Winter boat shows are always the best place to get a great deal on a new fishing boat, but once you tow your new prize home you’ll want to take some time to make sure its fully rigged for the coming season. They say a good fishing boat is only as good as the stuff you put in it, and there’s a lot of truth in that. So here are six essentials for getting your boat ready for the coming season. These aren’t accessories so much as necessities, which no good fishing boat should ever be without.

Rod Gloves

Rod Glove

How do you keep a bunch of rods stowed in the rod locker from tangling into one enormous mess? Wrap each stick in a Rod Glove before you stow it, and you’ll never face a tangle again. Picture a long synthetic sock that you pull over the rod from the tip to the reel and it’s easy to understand how the Rod Glove protects loose line and keeps adjacent rods from tangling. You can even get Rod Gloves labeled or in different colors so you can quickly grab the one you want at a glance. How did we ever get along without these things? Visit TheRodGlove.com for more information.

Lindy Tournament Marker Set

Lindy Marker Set

Find the hot spot and mark it easily so you can stay on top of biting fish. The internal ballast in Lindy’s famous barbell-shaped spot markers keeps them in place in even strong winds or currents, while maintaining a compact profile that stores easily in a three-market rack that can be easily mounted wherever you like. Different colors let you easily identify different ends or sides of a given spot at a glance. Visit LindyFishingTackle.com for more information.

Rapala Glove

Rapala-Glove

Originally designed to protect stray fingers when filleting fish, a couple of Rapala’s original Tuff-Knit fillet gloves are a must-have on any boat. Not only do they protect your hands from harm should they come into contact with the sharp gill covers or spines when handling fish, these unique gloves also cut through slime to give you a Velcro-like grip on even the slipperiest fish, making it far easier to unhook your catch and release it without harm. Available in three sizes and machine washable, they’re one necessity no boat should ever be without. Visit Rapala.com for more information.

Hot Foot

TH Hot Foot

The original Hot Foot from TH Marine is an essential for any fishing boat with console steering and an engine of 60 horsepower or more. The universal-fit device bolts to the floor, providing foot control of the throttle – just like an automobile’s gas pedal – so you can always keep two hands on the wheel while underway. Simple in design and basic in construction, the Hot Foot adds a considerable margin of safety to any boat that you drive from a seated position. Visit THMarine.com for more information.

AnchorMate

Worth Anchormate

Hauling up a heavy anchor is an invitation to a stiff back and chewed up fingers courtesy of constantly handling rough, wet ropes. The winch-like AnchorMate makes deploying or retrieving an anchor as easy as turning a handle. Easy to install at the bow or transom, the manually-operated AnchorMate provides the benefits of a power windlass on smaller fishing boats, where you’re using an anchor of 10 to 12 pounds. Visit WorthCo.com for more information.

Minn Kota Drift Sock

MinnKota Drift Sock

You want to drift in the wind, but the wind’s blowing harder than you’d like, and you’re drifting over the fish too quickly. So what do you do? Deploy a drift sock and your problems are solved. Acting like a parachute in the water, the drift sock slows your progress and gives you much better control. Minn Kota’s MKA-27 drift sock has weights at the bottom and floats at the top so it opens instantly when thrown into the water. Visit MinnKotaMotors.com for more information.

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