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New Year, New Gear

The 2022 soft water fishing season kicked off for me a few weekends ago – no big fish to brag about unfortunately. My targeted species was a bust and while we saw some big spawning bass, they were OOO, and we let them do their thing. I was supposed to be in Algonquin last week but some unexpected challenges we had to postpone – it sucked as I had bought a lot of gear. To do something with the gear I thought I would share some of the items I am excited to use this summer.

1. Katadyn BeFree Water Filter – 1 Litre

Generally, I am really goof at keeping myself hydrated, on trips its important to counteract the adult beverages consumed the night before. On fly ins and backcountry trips where all water needs to be filtered it has been a bot more of a challenge. Most days I am nursing the last few sips prior to heading into the cabin or camp for dinner. Enter the BeFree - it’s a collapsible water bottle with a built-in filter – simply dip it in the lake and squeeze water through the filter into your mouth. I picked up mine from MEC - Katadyn BeFree

Katadyn BeFree. Image courtesy of

2. Recreation Barrel Works Expeditionr Canoe Pack – 125 L

I love my Eureka 75 Litre Pack Eureka Canoe Pack Review but for the trip that we had planned it wasn’t going to be enough for a 3 night, 4 day trip. I did some research and ended up getting this RBW pack. So far, I have only used it in the basement getting prepped, but I really like it and it has solid reviews. I picked up mine from Canadian Outdoor Equipment – a must visit if you are in the greater Toronto area – I could spend so much money in that shop! RBW Canoe Pack

RBW Expedition. Image courtesy of Recreational Barrel Works.

3. Pflueger President XL Reel and Fenwick HMG Spinning Rod

I love fishing at the cottage, I love fishing the Ned Rig and I love 2-piece rods for that purpose. I have an older 2 piece Fenwick Eagle that’s 7 feet, medium action – its’ great Cottage Fishing Set Up Over the past few years though I have found myself fishing a lot more finesse – Ned, Drop Shot and wacky rigging and I wanted a compatible rod (I have a bit of a tackle buying problem) I picked it the rod up at JB’s Fishing Depot (who do not have a website) and got the reel on sale at Sail (say that 5 times) President XT Rod is 6’9, Medium Light, Fast and the reel is a 25X

Pflueger President XT - image courtesy of

4. Klymit Static V-Luxe XL Sleeping Pad

Man - I bought a lot of stuff for this trout trip that didn’t happen! I am a side sleeper; I cannot sleep on my back. I had an older sleeping pad that I used on our trip last summer and found myself waking a lot with a sore shoulder. Algonquin Trip Report I ended buying this Klymit Pad – its much thicker, packs up smaller and got great reviews. One call out – it is not a winter bag or if used in the winter my reading recommended you use a under pad as well. Full specs here Klymit Static V Luxe

Klymit Static V-Luxe XL - image courtesy of Sportchek

So those are a few of the items I am excited to use this season and will get to use some very soon – fishing at the cottage starts in earnest on bass opener, a rescheduled camping trip in planned for July, Miniss Lake in August and probably another camping trip in the fall.



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