Fishing is an activity that requires a lot of patience and skill, and can also be quite competitive. It involves using a rod and reel to cast a line into the water with the goal of catching, and typically releasing, a fish. Competitive fishing typically has teams compete against each other for the biggest catch, and some fishermen compete year-round in tournaments and special events.
Fishing is versatile and can be done in any body of water, whether on a team or individually.
Fishing can involve a lot of equipment, whether you’re just starting out or are a seasoned professional. Ensuring that you have all the supplies you need is key to enjoying your time fishing, while also staying safe and following local guidelines for recreational fishing.
Check out our Fisherman’s Tackle Starter Kit below to see what gear we recommend for first-time fishers.
Fishing Tackle Starter Kit
1. Fishing rod and reel combo
The most basic and important piece of fishing equipment. A good rod and reel will help you land your catch and make the experience more enjoyable, whether you’re fishing on a boat or on the shore.
2. Fishing line, hooks, bait and lures
A good fishing line can make a huge difference in your success, as it affects the way that your bait and lures work on the water. Fishing line and tackle are essential pieces of fishing gear, and you will need to choose the right type and weight for the fish you’re trying to catch.
Lures come in a variety of shapes and colours that help attract fish to your line. Live bait, like worms, is often used to attract fish, as well as frozen bait like shrimp. A stringer can be used to hold live bait/fish, and a cooler or bucket to keep everything chilled.
3. Life Jacket
Whether you’re in a boat or standing at the water’s edge, it’s imperative that you wear a life jacket while fishing, and be safe near the water at all times.
4. Fishing hooks and weights
Different types of hooks are needed for different fishing conditions, and weights are used to help the lure or bait reach the desired level in the water.
5. Fishing License
You'll need a fishing license to fish in most bodies of water. Fishing licenses are available for conservation and sport fishing purposes, and will have catch limits specified for each license. For fishing in Ontario, you’ll need an Outdoors Card along with a fishing license if you are aged 18-65.
If you want to start fishing in Ontario and are under 18, or over 65, you won’t require an Outdoors Card. You will, however, need a government-issued ID with you that displays your name and date of birth. Examples include, but are not limited to: a driver’s licence, Ontario Photo Card, or a Canadian passport.
6. Tackle box or custom tackle bag
With all this fishing gear in tow, you’ll need somewhere to store it. Traditional bait and tackle boxes are available from retailers like Cabella’s & Bass Pro Shops, and Canadian Tire.
You can also design your own custom fishing tackle bag and store your gear in style.
7. Protective clothing
It’s important to protect yourself against the elements while fishing, especially in full sun. Keep your skin covered by wearing a long sleeve shirt and a wide-brimmed hat that will reduce the amount of sun on your face.
You can also opt for polarized fishing sunglasses to protect your eyes from the glare of the sun of the water, and provide better visibility. Whether you’re fishing on land or out on the water, waterproof boots or waders are also a great idea.
Design your own long sleeve fishing jersey or hooded jacket to keep you warm and dry both on and off the water, for all seasons.
“Fishing.” Ontario.ca, https://www.ontario.ca/page/fishing
“Fishing Licence (Canadian Residents).” Ontario.ca, https://www.ontario.ca/page/fishing-licence-canadian-residents.