As a Wisconsin resident, Gary Parsons from The Next Bite knows a thing or two about winterization. Not only does he winterize his Mercury Marine rigged boat once the temps drop, but he also takes time to store his rods properly, reels, tackle and even electronics for the winter. Taking this extra step with your gear ensures that when you’re ready to hit the water in the spring, you and your equipment are ready to go.
• Remove tackleboxes from storage lockers and open them up to make sure they are dry inside. After drying, stack tackle boxes in an area where they will stay dry. A great way to store new lures is to package them in plastic bags inside of tackleboxes or plastic storage containers.
• Check for any rusted hooks or lures and remove them from the boxes. Rusty hooks can lose their sharpness, which could cost you that next catch.
• Store all line in a dry area at room temperature.
• Rods can be stored in many ways from hanging to rod racks, or even laying horizontal on the garage rafters. I just keep mine in the rod storage that I transport them in during the summer months. As long as they are dry and straight, they will be just fine. An additional step you can take is to remove the reels from the rods and lubricate them before use in the spring.
• Store life jackets in a dry area, especially the inflatable types. Check the inflatable jackets to make sure that you know which CO2 cartridges to purchase over the winter for spring installation.
• Keep hooks and plastics organized and in dry storage.
• Remove electronics from the boat and bring inside to store in a dry, room-temperature atmosphere.
• Bulky items can be stowed on shelves in tote boxes.